(1950s) was to lay perforated pipes underground in greenhouses which were
used for growing tomatoes. These pipes were connected to a stationary engine
(like a traction engine without the traction that was towed from site to
site) and the steam from the boiler was pumped through the pipes to sterilise
the soil. Very effective too apparently, but I just remember it as miserable
-------- Original Message --------
Some offline comments indicated my suggestion of steam as an ideal herbicide
was funny or a joke.
Maybe funny, indeed, but I am serious. There are several devices which use
steam to prepare a seed bed.
In my memory from years ago--I mean decades--is a picture in National
Geographic magazine of Amish farmers in the Midwest using an ancient steam
tractor. They would drive the tractor to the field, and then connect a large
pipe from the tractor's boiler to a metal box about 4 feet by 6 feet by 6
inches high. Tamp the box around a patch of carefully prepared planting soil.
An hour or so of steam from the tractor's boiler would completely sterilize
the upper few inches of a good sized seed bed. Non toxic yet very effective.
On Dec 15, 2009, at 5:25 PM, Diego Knop Henriques wrote: