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美国语文第三册 第85期:印第安玉米(01)

Few plants are more useful to man than Indian corn, or maize. 很少有别的植物像印第安玉米(也叫玉蜀黍)那么有用。 No grain, except rice, is used to so great an extent as an article of food. 除了大米以外,没有哪一种农作物像玉米一样被如此广泛地用作粮食。 In some countries corn is almost the only food eaten by the people. 在某些国家,玉米几乎是人们唯一的食粮。 Do you know why it is called Indian corn? 你知道印第安玉米这个称呼是怎么来的吗? It is because the American Indians were the first corn growers. 那是因为美洲的印第安人是最早种植玉米的人。 Columbus found this grain widely cultivated by them when he discovered the New World. 哥伦布发现新大陆的时候,也发现了印第安人大面积地种植这种农作物。 They pounded it in rude, stone bowls, and thus made a coarse flour, which they mixed with water and baked. 他们把玉米放在粗糙的石碗里捣碎,做成粗粝的玉米面,和上水就可以烘烤成玉米饼了。 Indian corn is now the leading crop in the United States. 印第安玉米是美国目前最主要的农作物。 In whatever part of this land we live, we see corn growing every year in its proper season. 在我们生活的这片土地上,无论哪个地区,每年在相应的季节,我们都可以看到玉米茁壮生长。 Yet how few can tell the most simple and important facts about its planting and its growth! 然而,尽管并不复杂,又有多少人能够说出这种作物是如何种植和生长的呢! Corn, to do well, must have a rich soil and a warm climate. 要让玉米生长得好,必须要有肥沃的土壤和温暖的气候。 It is a tender plant, and is easily injured by cold weather. 这种柔弱的植物很容易被寒冷天气摧毁。 The seed corn does not sprout, but rots, if the ground is cold and wet. 如果土地变得又冷又湿,玉米的种子就不会发芽,而会腐烂。 To prepare land properly for planting corn, the soil is made fine by plowing, and furrows are run across the field four feet apart each way. 为种植玉米而准备的土地,必须通过翻耕使土壤适于种植,一块地分成许多小块,任一方向每4英尺以土沟分隔。 At every point where these furrows cross, the farmer drops from four to seven grains of seed corn. 在土沟纵横交叉之处,农夫撒下4-7粒玉米种子, These are then covered with about two inches of earth, and thus form "hills" of corn. 埋在大约两英寸的土壤之下,这样就形成了“玉米堆”。 In favorable weather, the tender blades push through the ground in ten days or two weeks; 只要天气适宜,十天到两周之后,柔弱的种子就会扎根在土壤里, then the stalks mount up rapidly, and the long, streamer-like leaves unfold gracefully from day to day. 很快枝茎破土而出,越长越高。一天一天过去,丝带一样的叶子也优雅地舒展开来。 Corn must be carefully cultivated while the plants are small. 在玉米还是幼苗的时候,必须细心照料。 After they begin to shade the ground, they need but little hoeing or plowing. 然而当它们长高,盖住了土地之后,就几乎不再需要耕作了。 来自:VOA英语网 文章地址: http://www.tingvoa.com/html/20170301/440400.html