- Project Runeberg -  Through Siberia - the land of the future /

(1914) [MARC] Author: Fridtjof Nansen Translator: Arthur G. Chater - Tema: Russia
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Full resolution (JPEG) - On this page / på denna sida - XIII. The colonization and development of Siberia

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After the hosts of colonists that have poured into
Siberia in recent years, it was only to be expected that
most of the easily accessible land favourable for agri
culture should be already tåken up ; but if one would
ask how many there is still room for in this country,
it would be difficult to find an answer ; for if we con
sider the boundless expanses that are still lying idle
and how insignificant the cultivated tracts are in
comparison, it is easy to see that, for the present at
any rate, the resources of new land are practically
inexhaustible. It is true that a large number of colonists
are now obliged to seek a home away from the open
and almost ready grass land, and to go into the taiga,
where the work of clearing is more difficult. But the
forest soil is good and fertile, and when it is once cleared,
this part of the country too has a great future before it.
beans, maize, oats, barley, hemp and flax are sown ; winter rye much
more rarely, as there is little snow in winter and it may be easily frozen.
To every dessiatine are sown about 9 poods of wheat, 8 poods of summer
rye, 11 to 12 poods of oats, 9 poods of barley, etc. The following are
considered good yields : of wheat, 100-120 poods per dessiatine (19*5
to 23*4 hectolitres per hectare, or 21*6 to 25*9 bushels per acre) ; of
winter rye, 80-90 poods (17-19 hectolitres per hectare, or 18’8 to 21
bushels per acre) ; of oats 120-140 poods (37*6 to 44 hectolitres per
hectare, or 41’7 to 48-8 bushels per acre), etc, and of potatoes,
1000-1200 poods (1500-1800 kilograms per hectare, or 12 cwt. 1 stone
to 14 cwt. 4 stone per acre). A medium crop, on the other hand, is
about as follows : wheat 50-60 poods per dessiatine (9*B to 11’7 hecto-
litres per hectare, or 10’8 to 12’9 bushels per acre) ; winter rye 50 poods
(10’5 hectolitres per hectare, or 11*6 bushels per acre) ; oats 65-75
poods (17 to 23’4 hectolitres per hectare, or 18’8 to 25*9 bushels per
acre), and potatoes 500-700 poods per dessiatine (750-1050 kilograms
per hectare, or 6 cwt. to 8 cwt. 2 stone per acre).
It may further be mentioned that in Tomsk, which is considered
the most fertile district in Siberia, the most important crop is summer
wheat. From 6to 8 poods are sown per dessiatine ; the yield is large,
averaging over 70-80 poods per dessiatine (13*6 to 15’6 hectolitres
per hectare, or 15 to 17*3 bushels per acre), and in some years it may
be as much as 150 poods or more per dessiatine (29 hectolitres per
hectare, or 32’1 bushels per acre).

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