The Garden Guide

Book: Gardening Science - Soils, Manure and the Environment
Chapter: Chapter 2: Manure

Sheep and deer dung manure

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1288. The recent dung of sheep and of deer affords, when long boiled in water, soluble matters which equal from two to three per cent. of their weight. These soluble substances, procured by solution and evaporation, when examined, contain a very small quantity of matter analogous to animal mucus; and are principally composed of a bitter extract, soluble both in water and in alcohol. They give ammoniacal fumes by distillation, and appear to differ very little in composition. Some blades of grass were watered for several successive days with a solution of these extracts; they evidently became greener in consequence, and grew more vigorously than grass in other respects under the same circumstances. The part of the dung of cattle, sheep, and deer, not soluble in water, appears to be mere woody fibre, and precisely analogous to the residuum of those vegetables that form their food after they have been deprived of all their soluble materials.