Antique tractor seats as bar stools
  • On a concrete lawn, a display of garden statuaries
  • Sprucing up your outdoors with the unusual
  • " />
    Auction Finds

    Antique farm plow for my garden

    It looked like a farm plow to me. This vintage-looking metal implement sitting there on top of a chest in a back room of one of my favorite auction houses.

    I was drawn to it because of its appearance – and the thought that it would look fantastic in my small back-yard garden. It was so large, though, and my garden was so small that the plow would likely smother the poor thing. It also attracted me because it looked so out-of-place among the wooden bedroom furniture, dining room tables and other such pieces in the room.

    It was one of those things you see at auction or in a store that imaginarily speaks to you, reaches out and touches your arm, and wills you to stop and at least take a look. The implement seemed to be in good condition and still had some of its greenish paint.

    In researching farm plows later, I found that this was not actually a plow but a manual or hand cultivator, used it seemed to aerate the soil once the plow has actually turned it over. There was no mule or horse to pull it through hard, rocky and stubborn soil. The only animal in front of this piece of farm equipment or behind it was you the farmer or gardener. It did bring back some very old memories – I assume they were memories and not scenes I’d seen in some hardscrabble movie like “Sounder” – from my grandfather’s farm, of hand-pushed plows with metal blades slicing the soil.

    I also found in my research that around 1837, a blacksmith named John Deere – yes, that John Deere – built a polished-steel plow with a curve that allowed dirt to slide right off it, according to the company’s website. Before then, farmers had to continually wipe away clumps of dirt that clung to their cast-iron plows as they worked.

    His invention was a blessing for farmers trying to cut through the prairie soil in the Great Plains area west of the Mississippi River and east of the Rocky Mountains. For the next 80 years, horse-drawn plows were the backbone of the Deere business.

    In 1863, Deere made a riding cultivator, and four years later, a walking cultivator that could be manually pushed. That one became very popular among farmers because it cost less.

    Manual cultivators were at the heart of home gardening until small garden tractors took over in the 1950s, according to the Encyclopedia of American Farm Implements & Antiques by Charles H. Wendel (2004). The book includes drawings of cultivators from the late 1800s until the early 1900s.

    I don’t know how much the cultivator sold for at auction, but I did find two similar ones on eBay – both Planet Jr. and weather-beaten – that sold for $99.99 and $120.

    If I’d had bought the one at auction, though, it’d be sitting pretty in my backyard – not for sale.

    Tagged as: , ,

    Leave a Response

    Please note: comment moderation is enabled and may delay your comment. There is no need to resubmit your comment.

    bbc galapagos las islas que cambiaron el mundogalapagos cruise reviewsbest cruise ships galapagos islandsbest family galapagos cruisebest time to go to galapagos and machu picchubest time to go to peru and galapagosbiotech bedrijf galapagosbiotechnologiebedrijf galapagosbudget galapagos boat toursbudget galapagos cruise pricescaracteristicas de las islas galapagos antiguascaracteristicas de las islas galapagos flora y faunacaracteristicas de las islas galapagos mas antiguascaracteristicas islas antiguas galapagoscaracteristicas islas mas antiguas galapagoscelebrity cruise galapagos machu picchucelebrity cruise lines galapagos islandscelebrity cruises galapagos machu picchucelebrity cruises galapagos reviewscelebrity cruises galapagos xpeditioncelebrity xpedition galapagos 2014celebrity xpedition galapagos cancelledcelebrity xpedition galapagos cruisecelebrity xpedition galapagos cruise 2014celebrity xpedition galapagos excursionscelebrity xpedition galapagos machu picchucelebrity xpedition galapagos price