Science: Soil Saver

Dr. Charles Allen Thomas, world-famed as a chemist but known to his neighbors as an amateur farmer, was annoyed by the farmland that he owned near Dayton, Ohio. Some parts of the same field yielded well, while other parts yielded badly. Chemical analysis showed that both patches had the same supply of plant nutrients. What was the difference?

Many other farmers had noted the same thing, and there were many theories. But Dr. Thomas, a research chemist who is now president of the great Monsanto Chemical Co., was in a position to spend time,...

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