30 JULY 1948, Page 17


HARVEST has begun, and though nothing is sure till the grain is threshed— on the field or off—the yield is likely to be bumper. Since Sir John Boyd Orr with other specialists insists on warning us that starvation is round the corner, even in the West, much more in the East, the joy in harvest should return to something of its old supremacy, with the feeling that belts will not have to be further tightened. In a good many districts harvest- and haysel (a word worth recovering for general speech) are coinciding, for oddly contradictory reasons. In East Anglia, alleged to be the dry region, rains have been too continuous to admit of stacking ; and incidentally the tripod system has more than justified itself. In Western England, on the other hand, grass grew late and cutting was postponed, and, owing to what one farmer described as a period of drought, the hay has been saved in excellent condition. A good deal of it was pressed and trussed on the field. Potatoes, which come second to corn—of whatever sort— seem to be very much of the same quality, heavy in yield and good in quality. The promise has persuaded a large number of private persons to keep a pig. It is not a " gentleman that pays the rent "; but it is a gentleman that solves most of the household caterer's worst difficulties.