Àiteach / Agriculture

Informant Origin
Tiree
Location
Eilean Thiriodh, Goirtean Dòmhnaill (Barrapol) [Tiree, Barrapol]
Notes
  • [NOTES: the original title of the questionnaire is “Land Cultivation”.]
1. Land division and allocation
(a) Specific portions or allotments into which arable land is divided
sgrìob (f)furrow.
drilleadh (f), drillich (pl)drill.
iomaire (m), iomairean (pl)strip.
gàrradh-calvegetable plot.
gàrradh-buntàtapotato plot.
feannag (f), feannagan (pl)lazy-bed.
druim (m)ridge.
gàrradh (m)walled field (pìos beag de ghrunnd).
achadh (m)open field. Achadh-coirce. Achadh-eòrna. Achadh-seagail.
(b) Various types of arable land
grunnd gun chinneasfallow ground.
grunnd falamhfallow ground.
falamhFallow not practised much in Tiree – crofts too small.
talamh àitichte (m)ploughed land, cultivated land.
talamh àiteach (m)land suitable for cultivation.
talamh glas (m)unploughed land.
talamh làidir (m)unploughed land.
(c) Actual dividing and allocating of land, e.g. casting lots
[crann]a’ dol a chrann, a’ cur a chrann – casting lots. Casting lots in Barrapol, Tiree was used most commonly in the dividing-up of seaweed on the shore amongst the township crofters. Two bodaich would draw aside from the group. One felt his pockets for objects (e.g. a pipe, a knife, a penny, etc.) and the other decided which lot each object represented. Then the first bodach held the objects in the palm of his hand for picking. Never more than ½ doz lots.
[crìochan]boundaries. Crìochan of lots marked out by furrows with ceaba, or by tangles (stamhan).
a’ togail chrìochanconstructing boundaries.
a’ càradh chrìochanmending or maintaining boundaries.
a’ tomhas chrìochanmarking boundaries (done by pacing).
(d) Land owned or held under leases of various duration
croit (f), croitean (pl)croft.
fearann (m)farm.
tactack.
fearann a’ diùcthe state on Tiree.
an oighreachdthe estate on Tiree (uaireanan).
caiticheann (m)common grazing.
feurach (m)grazing. Feurach-cruidh. (Dh’fhaodadh e a bhi air a’ chaiticheann [q.v.] no air a’ chroit-fhéin.)
machaire (f)sea-meadow.
sliabh (m)hill-pasture.
2. Harness of a horse
(a) The harness of a horse as used in the performance of different tasks
(b) Different parts of the harness for carting
bit (m), bitichean (pl)bit.
stàgbar attached to bit by chain and situated below jaw so as to control horse.
srian (f), srianan (pl)reins (ropa caineaba – hemp).
srònach (f), srònaich (pl)strap across nose (leather).
smeachan (m), smeachain (pl)fine string going round jaws to keep the headstrap from moving over the ears.
claigeann (m), claigeannan (pl)headstrap, going round back of head (leather or rope).
na blindersblinders (only used in Tiree when driving a trap or machine).
sùgan (m), sùgain (pl)collar (connlach air figheadh taobh-a-staigh agus learach taobh-a-mach).
na hemshames (tied at top with hemp).
a’ bhoisflat part on collar before coming to hooks on hames.
hamestrapstrap / chain (generally hemp) joining hames together.
guailleachan (f), guailleachain (pl)shoulder slings or chains (traces).
srathair (f)saddle.
driomal (m), driomalan (pl)chain in saddle groove.
am belly-bann (m)belly-band (hemp).
a’ bhriogais (f)collectively parts round hindquarters and tail.
(c) Different parts of the harness for ploughing or harrowing
sìnte (f), sìnteachan (pl)backstrap and chains going back to the swingle trees.
na gaidheachanguys (for preventing horses from separating too much in two-horse ploughing).
3. Carts
(a) The common farm-yard cart
cairt (f), cairtean (pl), cartach (gen)common farm-yard cart.
cairt-chopaich, cairtean-copaich (pl)couping cart.
càrn (m), càrnan (pl)a cart without sides or a back, for carrying timber.
(b) Different parts of a cart
1. Body
bocsa na cartachbody of cart.
na trimssole-beams or two main beams lengthwise.
spàrr-thoisich, spàrran-toisich (pl)front cross-beam.
spàrr-dhéiridh, spàrran-deiridh (pl)rear cross-beam.
slot (m), slotaichean (pl)other cross-beams below body, and between front and rear ones.
ùrlar na cartach (m)bottom of cart.
taobhanan (m)side boards.
beul na cartach (m)gunwale (a’ dol mu’n cuairt na cartach air fad, mar bhàta).
deireadh na cartach (m)dropdown back-board for discharging.
toiseach na cartach (m), toiseachan nan cairtean (pl)front-board on which driver sits.
plòtan (m and f), plòtain (pl)chocks (separating trams from axle).
cìoch an roth, cìochan na roi[sic] [pl] hub.
2. Trams
3. Wheel and axle
roth (m), roithean (pl)wheel. (Not “rothan” in Tiree.)
aiseal (f), aisealan (pl)axle.
an cearcall (m)iron tyres (hoop / ring).
na fullysfelloes.
cìoch an rothwooden hub.
4. The plough
(a) Different kinds of ploughs
crann Galldaall iron, 2 horse plough with steel mould board (sgiath).
crann Gàidhealachall iron 2 horse plough with cast iron mould board (sgiath). Had wooden handles locally made.
[plough]Both metal swing ploughs not controlled for depth. Driver had to control depth.
(b) Parts of a plough in detail
an tarraing (tarraing a’ chruinn)the part to which main swingle tree is attached.
bonn a’ chruinnthe head to which the sock is attached.
sgiath (f), sgiathan (pl)the furrow board or mould board.
druim a’ chruinnthe part to which furrow board and earth board are attached.
barr an t-suicthe point of the sock.
sgiath an t-suicthe “winged” part of the sock.
osan an t-suicwhere the sock fits on to plough.
coltaire (m), coltairean (pl)coulter.
spàg (f), spàgan (pl)stilts.
soc (m), socan (pl)share.
smuiseal (m), smuisealan (pl)hooking device between “druim a’ chruinn” [q.v.] and “an tarraing” [q.v.].
5. Harrows and swingle trees
(a) Different types of harrows
cliath (f), cliathan (pl)harrow.
stoc (f), stuic (pl)3 or 4 main beams, always wooden. Made of ‘giuthas geal’ or larch when being used for light sandy soil. Made of ‘darach’ when being used for heavy, clay soil.
fiaclan na cléithtines (sia fiaclan anns a h-uile stoc).
ludagan nan cliathanhooks joining two harrows together.
(b) Swingle trees
greallag (f), greallagan (pl)swingle trees. Swingle trees in two horse ploughing / harrowing composed of three main components: 2 ‘greallagan’ (nearer horses) and 1 ‘amall’ (nearer plough / harrow – bigger and heavier). But if only one horse used, then one ‘greallag’ used.
6. Spring work
(a) Fertilisers and fertilising
1. Fertilisers
innearmanure.
innear-each (f)horse manure.
innear-cruidhcow manure. (Chan e …-chruidh.) The best manure was that in a 2-3 year old “Dùnan” on which grass would be growing.
innear-chal (f)pigeon manure. Obtained from caves in Ceann a’ Bhara. An innear as treasa. Bha i tioram mar mhin, agus bha feadhainn a’ cumail a-mach gum b’i an innear as fhèarr – na bu bheairtiche.
innear Ghalldaartificial manure (imported).
Seaweed
barr deargtop or flower of tangle (Laminaria digitata). Separates from the actual tangle-stock (stamh) in April/May. Then it comes ashore and commences rotting in the sun. Rotting forms it into a jellied mass known as “bruig”.
bruig (f)form of barr dearg [q.v.] collected for fertiliser.
cìob (f)[kind of seaweed.] Reddish in colour and most often found in October. Grows on actual rock. Takes a long time in rotting due to cold weather (winter-time). Good for potatoes.
feamainn dhubh (f)bladder wrack (Fucus vesiculosus). Grows close inshore and has to be cut from the actual rock. Not so fine as “a’chìob” [q.v.]. Tha i anabarrach math airson talamh-buntàta cuideachd.
caraichdein (f)carrageen (Gigartina stellata). Collected in August. Car bog, spongy. Car buidhe cuideachd.
duileasg (f)dulse (Rhodymenia palmata). Car buidhe agus dearg a-mach a season. Bha caig [sic] duileasg ’nad bhial dìreach mar a fhuair thu an tràigh i.
feamainn chìoran, feamainn chìreadhchannel wrack (Pelvetia canaliculata). Even spongier than caraichein [sic – caraichdein above] [q.v]. Dorcha-buidhe. Bha iad ’ga truisneachadh airson leigheas crodh air an robh tart. Gheobhadh tu i air na creagan mar a bha an làn ìseal.
sgeannagan (m)[kind of seaweed.] Buidhe. ’Ga fhaotainn mar a bha an làn ìseal aig am [sic] sam bi de’n bhliadhna. ’Ga chaigneadh ’nad bhial cuideachd. Table-knife in shape.
caragan (m)[kind of seaweed.] Ri ’chaigneadh. Cha mhór nach robh e dubh.
slamhcan (m)[kind of seaweed.] (Enteramorpha intestinalus). Sleamhainn. Makes pudding – not very good. Green weed / fungus on rock. Brackish water.
2. The actual work performed, e.g. transporting seaweed/manure to field
a’ feamanadh (verbal noun)the act of transporting seaweed from the shore (ann an cairt).
a’ cur fodha na feamainnthe act of putting seaweed into furrow (le forc no gràpa).
3. Implements used for lifting, carrying and spreading manure or seaweed
gràpa dìreachgraip used for spreading of both ‘innear’ and ‘feamainn’ on field before ploughing. Sometimes known as ‘gràpa cartach’. Crois a’ ghràpa – handle. Cas a’ ghràpa – shaft. Na meuran (always 4) – prongs. (Chan e “meòir” ann an Tiriodh.)
gràpa cartach[See gràpa dìreach.]
gràpa cromgraip - air a uisneachadh air uaireanan airson ’ga toirt as a’ chairt. Na’s fhaide na gràpa dìreach [q.v.].
bara (m)barrow. Toiseach a’ bhara. An aiseal. An roth. An t-ùrlar. Na taobhan. Na casan. Na spàgan (f) (spàg – sing.).
(b) Turning and tilling the soil
1. Implements used for turning or tilling the soil
ceabaordinary garden spade.
gràpafork.
2. Parts of the implements used
3. Words used in connection with tilling the soil, e.g. digging
a’ gearradh sgrìobdigging a furrow (le ceaba, nan robh luachair ’sa leithid ann).
an druimfirst two furrows when starting to plough, face to face. Dheanadh iad druim le chéile. Daonnan nuair a bhiodh tu a’ treabhadh.
claise (f), claisean (pl)between each ploughed section.
(c) Seed planting
1. Names of seeds planted and words used for sowing or planting them
coirce beagnative to Tiree – only type of oats to grow on sandy soil.
coirce mórother forms of oats such as “sandy oats”, “yielder”, “onward”, etc. Imported types. Used for grinding.
eòrna dà shreathused as malting barley and for feeding.
eòrna ceithir sreathan  (or eòrna mór)’se sin a bu mhotha a bha iad a’ cur an Tiriodh. Also for feeding and for making barley bread and barley porridge – brochan. Also used for malting.
eòrna mór[See eòrna ceithir sreathan.]
seagalrye. Used for feeding. Only stuff that would grow well on sandy soil.
2. Names of any special sack, basket etc. used for carrying seed when sowing or planting
peall (f), peallan (pl)sack formed around neck and shoulders from a blanket.
3. Names of any special implement used for planting
[dibble]Dibble used in Tiree.
7. Summer work
(a) Cleaning and weeding potatoes
a’ glanadh a’ bhuntàtaweeding and cleaning (le làmhan).
a’ cur iomaearthing (ridging them up, putting soil up onto ridges).
“hough” (f), houghaichean (pl)hough.
(b) Thinning and weeding other crops
tanachadhthinning. Tanachadh an tuairneip – thinning turnips (act of). (Also applicable to carrots.)
an ath-chuirthe transplanting of cabbage (planted from seed).
8. Autumn work
(a) Hay making
1. The implement used for (a) cutting (b) raking and turning (c) lifting and stacking
corran (m), corrain (pl)sickle.
speal (f), spealan (pl)scythe.
clach-speal, clachan-speal (pl)sharpener.
ràsal (m)hay rake.
forc (m), forcanan (pl)hay fork.
2. Name the parts of the implements mentioned
[speal]An t-iaruinn. Gaidh. Na h-òrdagan. An crann (snathe). American snathe (below) used. Previously Scots snathe used (forked type)
seòl na spealpiece of canvas mounted on a wire behind blade at snathe to ensure that all grass was swept forward.
3. Various stages of hay-making
a’ spealadhscything. Speal mi.
a’ gearradhcutting.
a’ tionndadhturning.
a’ sprìodadh feòirspreading and leaving hay light (airing) (le forc).
a’ tioramachadh feòirdrying.
rucannan-achaidhhay-cocks.
a’ deanamh rucannanstacking.
(b) Corn cutting and securing
1. Implements used for cutting, raking, binding, lifting into stacks etc.
speal
ràsal
forc
2. Bands (for tying corn), sheaves, stooks etc.
bann (m), bannan (pl)bands for sheaves. 8, but more usually 10 sheaves in each stook (adag) in Tiree. Reef knot for sguaban-coirce. Bann-eòrna (at sguab centre) for sguaban-eòrna.
a’ ceagal[sic] tying.
3. Stack making (in yard)
làrach a’ rucastone foundation (hay). Only in damp clay ground. Wooden tripods only used in the field – i.e. with rucannan-achaidh [q.v.].
làrach a’ mhulainstone foundation (corn). Only in damp clay ground. Wooden tripods only used in the field – i.e. with rucannan-achaidh [q.v.].
ruca (m), rucannan (pl)haystack (rick).
ruca-achaidhsmall haystack in field [(wooden tripods used).]
ruca mórlarge haystack in stackyard (anns an iodhlann).
prapag (f), prapagan (pl)hay coil (mun do rinn iad rucannan).
mulan (m)cornstack.
4. Methods of carrying or transporting corn from field to corn yard
By cart
Then by
[slide feòir]rig lifter (flat wooden slide). Mu naoi traighean (troighean) a dh’fhad agus sia traighean (troighean) a liad. Bha “trims” ann mar gum biodh air cairt, agus dà roth bheag. Air a tarraing le each.
Then by
forc-feòirhayfork.
and
rasalhayrake.
[corn]Corn: 8 or 10 sguaban (sheaves) – 1 adag (stook); 10 adagan – 1 stuca; 8 stucannan – 1 mulan.
[ruca]haystack in yard. Na casan (cas sing.) (4 altogether). Clachan. The horizontal rope (in the form of a spiral from the top of the ‘ruca’) has no special name, but its placing on a stack is known as ’ga shiomanachadh.
cruach (cruach feòir)hay, oblong with rounded hipped ends.
sgian-fheòirfor slicing sections of stacks, esp. cruachan [q.v.]. Done vertically like a saw.
mulancorn-stack in stack-yard. An ceann (thatched with seileasdair (iris) or [sic]: – Am bodach (½ doz sheaves). – Bann. – Crios. – Sìoman-sgéith. – Am màthair shìoman. An cal(a)ba. An t-sreath (outer row of sheaves). (Ears of adag to centre.) Biadh a’ mhulain (inner row of sheaves).
[calaba][See mulan.]
(c) Potato lifting and storing
togail a’ bhuntàta[potato lifting.]
1. Implements
gràpa-buntàtaDìreach (cas a’ ghrapa [sic]).
2. Sack, creel, barrow etc. used for carrying potatoes in field and to steading
[poca]Potatoes put into a poca.
3. Where potatoes are kept or stored
polag (f), polagan (pl)potato pit. About 3' deep, 3' wide, up to 20' in length, 2' high (above ground level). Potatoes covered with layer of hay. Then covered with “ùir”. Then covered over by “sgrothan”, which had been cut with a “lair-cheab”. Better if potatoes were allowed to breathe as they sweat – toll beag no dhà mura biodh reothadh ann. Ma bha coltas reothadh ann, dh’fheumadh tu an dùnadh.
4. Potato diseases
(d) Other crops (Lifting and storing)
1. Implements used for lifting
clipeadh na’ tuairneipcutting leaves from turnip (done with a scythe blade or “sgian thuairneip”).
2. How and where crop is stored
sabhal (m)
iothlann (f)
3. Diseases/insects which attack the particular crop(s)
fochan (m)affects young crops of oats, barley, etc., which start wilting away before they mature. Cure to roll over with a heavy roller. (Only occurs in clay soil.)
toranach (m)affects crops when growing.
[insects]No insects in stackyard or barn. Only weevils but don’t diminish value.
finneagan an fheòir (f)[weevils?]
coirce-madaidhsmut. Oats go black like soot with a fungus disease. Must be dressed with mercury solution to kill it (but not with feeding oats). Soaked in fermaldihide [sic] [formaldehyde?] nowadays.
cnoidheag (f), cnoidheagan (pl)maggot in turnips.
9. Winter work
(a) Land drainage
1. Drains, ditches etc.
dìgean (f)ditches.
dreanaichean (f)drains.
2. Implements used
spaid mhórrutting spade. A’ chrois. A’ chas. An t-osan. A’ chluas. Ceann na spaid.
grapa crom[sic] to haul turf out. An grap [sic] fhéin. An t-osan. Cas a’ ghrap [sic].
(b) Potato cutting for seed
1. Instruments used
sgian
sùilean a’ bhuntàta
2. Different kinds of potatoes
buntàta luathearly potatoes.
buntàta anmochlate potatoes.
buntàta ruadhOrkney reds.
(c) Corn threshing
1. Implements used
an t-suirsde (f), suirsdeanan (pl)(An ‘r’ is often sounded in Tiree.) An iall (f) (de chraiceann caorach – the ‘iall’ was made of ‘sùgan’ in the distant past). Am buailtean (caltainn). An lacharan (m), lacharain (pl).
2. Threshing
a’ bualadhthreshing. A’ bualadh arbhair.
dannsa na suirsdemanipulating the actual flail.
a’ spoth an t-sìlseparating the straws from the seed.
(d) Grain winnowing
a’ càthadh[grain winnowing.]
1. Devices used
fasganadh (f), fasganadhan (pl)vessel used for winnowing seed (airson a’ mhuill a chur air falbh). 18" in diameter and fairly shallow (c. 2") with a solid bottom of sheepskin (wooden).
criathar (m), criathair (pl)deeper than “fasganadh” [q.v.] – c. 4" and with a perforated sheepskin bottom (done with a red hot knitting needle or ‘dealg’). Airson fras a’ sgeallain a chur as an t-sìol. (Wild mustard – finer than oats or barley.)
2. How constructed and materials used. Winnowing
10. Permanent structures/buildings for storing crops
(a) Stack-yard
iothlann (f)stackyard.
am bealach (m), bealaichean[pl] gateway.
(b) Barn and parts of a barn
an soranopening in wall to allow wind to enter when winnowing. 2½' high x 2' wide. Ma choinneamh an doruis fhéin.
lobht’ an t-sabhailraised portion on top of which corn is stored.
11. Modern implements and machines
an sgiancutting implement in mower of binder.
bailaichean[sic] bales.
ràsal a’ bhindera binder’s large spoked wooden wheel.

DASG
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