The Formation of Vegetable Mould
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The Formation of Vegetable Mould book
Worms have played a more important part in the history of the world than most persons would at first suppose. In many parts of England a weight of more than ten tons of dry earth annually passes through their bodies and is brought to the surface on each acre of land. So that the whole superficial bed of vegetable mould passes through their bodies in the course of every few years. Castings when dry often crumble into small pellets, and these are apt to roll down any sloping surface. Archaeologists ought to be grateful to worms, as they protect and preserve for an indefinitely long period every object, not liable to decay, which is dropped on the surface of the land, by burying it beneath their castings. Worms periodically expose the mould to the air, and sift it so that no stones larger than the particles which they can swallow are left in it.