Wet Wheat Pickler

Interviewee: John Cavanagh
Location: Wyalong
Theme: Pests

In the early decades of the 1900s parasites in wheat seeds caused enormous damage to crops. At Wyalong see how the early methods of treating wheat were carried out. With the wet seed pickler it was necessary to soak the grain in a solution of water and copper sulphate ('bluestone'). This was labour intensive, had to be undertaken the night before sowing and the bluestone adversely affected germination. A better method was the Hudson dry pickler which involved circulating the wheat in a revolving barrel containing a dry solution of copper carbonate said not to affect germination. However, it was the inventions of a young South Australian farmer, Alf Hannaford from Riverton, from 1915 which contributed much to the development of seed cleaning and grading machines for farmers and contractors.

Stage 5 Education Resource: Education Resource - Wet Wheat Pickler (PDF, 255.2 KB)

Museum: Wyalong Museum