How do you know when to plow your fields?
We have sandy clay loam soil, when you can squeeze a handful of soil without seeing water, and the ball crumbles easily. Also when the soil turns up with a shine to it, this is a good indicator it is too wet. Stamp your foot in one place several times and if you see water it is too wet to do anything. We plow in Oklahoma to rid our fields of cheat type grasses (downy brome, marshall rye grass etc.) Till they become a problem we don't waste the aditional fuel needed for plowing.
Did the invention of the oxen collar improve farming because oxen could plow much faster than horses?
No. It just made it easier to control the oxen as they were being used to plow fields and for the oxen to pull the plow, and it made it more efficient to be able to use more than one ox to use for plowing. But it never made oxen plow fields faster than horses do. Horses are always going to be faster and more high-stepping than an ox will ever be.
They don't. Plowing is done only to break up pastures or hay fields that are being converted into crop land. The cultivator, not the plow, is the main tillage machinery that is used to break up harvested fields in the first step to preparing the soil for seeding. The plow is NOT the only tillage machinery that is used to till the field, unlike that which is used to "prep" fields on farm games like…