Farmers cotton on to new soil test using their Y-fronts
A Co. Limerick farmer, who is always up for the craic, is burying his underpants in the interests of science.
This unique form of soil testing has been tried in Scotland, Canada and America so why not Ireland? Paudie Ryan, a dairy farmer in Cappamore, combines farming with entertaining on stage with the Rearcross Drama Group. A number of years ago he created a character called Cllr Paudie in the midst of an election campaign and even erected signs.
The underpants burying trend has been reported in media round the world in recent weeks as the the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board in the UK are actually urging farmers to bury their cotton smalls in pastures to test soil quality.
The Department of Agriculture and Teagasc have yet to issue similar below the belt instructions.
“If, after two months, the underpants are exhumed intact, the soil is sterile and lifeless. If nothing but an elastic band remains it is thriving,” said the UK experts.
After doing his own research, Paudie says there is “method in their madness”.
“I have around 90 acres of variable land. It is actually very suitable for the experiment because some of it is very rich, free draining and productive, and other parts are more low-lying and less productive.
“The ground I put my undies in would be very productive and rich and free draining. There was an abundance of worms and other biological activity.