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BC Historical Books

BC Historical Books

Farming in Vancouver Island Vancouver Island Fruit Lands (B.C.) 1910

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Vancouver Island
Vancouver Island Fruit Lands
Carmichael and Moorhead Limited
District Offices :
Vancouver City Agents :
Sole Agents for United Kingdom and Belgium:
Sole Agents for France:
The Publishers wish to thank Mr.
Fleming, and Mr. Leonard Frank for the
photos contained in this issue. Acknowledgments are also made to the Vancouver Island
-Development League and many other friends
for their invaluable help in preparing the
Some thirty years ago, when the Esquimalt and Nanaimo
Railway was built (.now the Vancouver Island division of the
Canadian Pacific Railway) the Government granted to the railway,
by way of a contribution, a large tract of country which included
some of the finest farming land on the Island. Up to recent times,
however, no systematic attempt had been made to assist in its
development. Settlers came there and prospered exceedingly as
the Province badly needed farm produce, and is even now importing hall its supply. But these settlers had to make their own roads
and clear their own lands. The Vancouver Island Fruit Lands
Company was formed, by concession from the Railway Company
to colonize the Railway holdings. After surveying the ground the
Company has chosen for immediate development the portion indicated on the map (enclosed with this book) and is looking for
farmers to take up plots of 10 acres and upwards. The terms of
concession are liberal enough to allow the company in subdividing-
the land, to construct roads giving access to each individual farm.
while yet offering the land on very advantageous terms to genuine
settlers, whose farming may be expected to furnish goods traffic
to the Railway.
The Company has experienced men on the spot, -whose duty it
is to give practical' information to the man who wants to make
a new start in a new country, where opportunity offers great
reward to the industry of all. A settler can make arrangements
with the Company for clearing a portion of his selection, for the
building of a house, and for the necessary outbuildings. An investigation farm is being established in each district to aid the
settler in a practical manner. Some blocks of land are now being
converted into semi-ready farms.
If the reader after studying this booklet, is interested in hearing about the agricultural, fruit-growing and poultry opportunities
on Vancouver Island; if he wants to know how he can get, at the
lowest price and on the best possible terms, a farm of such a size
as he can command the capital to work; if he wants to know how-
to secure a beautiful home in a new and prosperous land, he
should  write  at  once  to  one  of the  addresses on  the  title  page.
Vancouver Island is 185 miles long, with an average width
of 40 miles. It lies so close to the mainland of British Columbia
that for two centuries after its discovery it was not regarded as
an island at all, but as a peninsula standing out from the
Canadian coast. The Island is an integral part of the Province
of British Columbia commercially as well as politically, and its
importance is indicated by the fact that A^ictoria, the capital
city of the Province, is on Vancouver Island. Vancouver City
(including suburbs), just opposite the Island, on the mainland,
has 200.000 inhabitants, and is the mainland terminal of the
Canadian Pacific Railway, Canadian Northern Pacific and other
transcontinental railways.
When the Hudson Bay Company opened the first post, Vancouver Island was a land of virgin forest, penetrated only by the
Red Indian. Today it is prosperous and civilized, with fine harbours, railroads building from end to end, and a population
devoted to farming, forestry, coal and copper-mining, fisheries
and manufactures. Victoria (with suburbs) has a population
of over 65,000, and the city's value as assessed for taxation, is
about SI 12.000.000.
Nanaimo, the Newcastle of Vancouver Island, has 10,000
inhabitants, and has been shipping coal to the mainland for
more than half-a-century. It has a flourishing timber trade,
herring fisheries, and manufactures. Other towns on the seaboard facing the mainland are Ladysmith (coal), Chemainus
(timber), Duncan (farming and residential), Cumberland (coal),
Parksville (agriculture), Qualicum (seaside resort). On the
Western seaboard Alberni and Port Alberni are rapidly gaining
prominence.    The latter city, on a magnificent harbour, is the
[Page Seven]
centre of a rich timber, coal-mining and agricultural region, with
salmon and deep-sea fisheries, and there are waterfalls within a
radius of twelve miles capable of developing 50.000 horse-power.
Property within the city limits is assessed (year 1913) at
$3,322,442.00, and the City of Alberni at SI.519,160.00.
Alberni Valley is about 20 miles long and from six to eight
miles wide. It is destined to become an important agricultural
district. It is distant 134 miles from Victoria and 55 miles from
Nanaimo, with which place it is connected by the Esquimalt
and Nanaimo Railway. The Canadian Northern Pacific Railway
is building from Victoria to the northern end of Vancouver
Island via Port Alberni, and will traverse the valley. A very
large area of good agricultural land can easily be brought under
cultivation by clearing and drainage. The soil generally is a
clayey loam and very productive, being well adapted for fruitgrowing and dairying. A considerable part of the holdings of
this Company lies within the Alberni Valley.
The opening of the Panama Canal is bound to increase
enormously the trade and to raise the value of land on Vancouver Island. The great railway companies realizing the future,
are hurrying new lines from Victoria to the northern end of the
Island. These lines will open up one of the most beautiful
agricultural districts along the Eastern coast between Nanaimo
and Comox. All that country between Alberni, Comox, and
Port Hardy, with its agricultural possibilities, water powers,
timber, splendid natural harbours (Nootka, Quatsino), and romantic scenery (Strathcona Park) is bound to become a densely
settled district with prosperous little towns lying in fertile
One of the factors tending towards rapid development is
the great annual increase in the number of holiday tourists. To
encourage this the Provincial Government are spending large
sums in developing roads and making easy of access the beauties
[Page Eight]
of Stratficona Park, with its unbounded wealth and variety of
natural scenery. The tourist traffic not only brings to the
Island a large amount of hard cash, but also creates a demand,
Avhich already is far in excess of the present supply, for all
manner of farm produce.
The coasts of British Columbia and Vancouver Island are
the only parts of Canada which are free from severe winters.
Vancouver Island has for farming purposes the finest all-
round climate in the world, having cool summers and moderate winters without an)- extremes. The Isothermal lines.
denoting 40 degrees (8 degrees above freezing) in winter and
60 degrees Fahrenheit in summer, intersect at Vancouver
Island and produce as nearly as possible both ideal summer
and winter temperature.
There are no blizzards, hot nights, thunderstorms, long
winters, killing frosts, or sudden changes. The distinguishing
climatic characteristics are uniform temperature, absence of
summer or winter extremes, pure air, and bracing oversea
breezes, comfortable cool nights, and sufficient moisture, with
the resultant perennial verdure and purest water.
In Appendix A (page 39) will be found tables showing
the temperature, rainfall, snowfall and bright sunshine for the
three years last past at Victoria. In the West and North
parts of Vancouver Island the rainfall is more abundant but
the winters are just as mild.
Before giving in detail the working figures for the various
kinds of produce which can be raised on the farms offered for
sale by the Vancouver Island Fruit Lands Limited, it is desirable to tell the enquirer where he can dispose of his crops.
Obviously the fact that certain produce costs a certain amount
to raise and has a certain value when sold does not secure a
profit to the farmer unless he can bring his wares to market.
What then is the state of demand and supply in the
markets accessible to Vancouver Island farmers?
The answer is complete and satisfactory. The cities of
the Island and the mainland could use double the amount of
farm produce that is grown. Fifty per cent, of the vegetables,
fruit, eggs, poultry, and other farm commodities used in British
Columbia (which, of course, includes Vancouver Island) have
to be imported over a tariff wall.
A list of the farm produce imported into British Columbia
and its value, compiled from Government returns, will be found
in Appendix E (page 44), showing total annual imports, officially
valued at $15,803,545.
The whole of this produce could have been grown locally if
there had been farmers to raise it; and this is why the Provincial Government takes such untiring pains to attract capable
settlers to agricultural lands, and why it taxes them so lightly.
Vancouver Island itself and the British Columbia mainland
form for all practical purposes a single market. The distance
is so small and communications are so good that it makes no
difference whether a farm is on the Island or on the Continent.
[Page  Ten]
Steamers admirably adapted for farm freight deliver produce at
Vancouver in four-and-a-half to six hours from time of shipment, while trains from the farming districts take but two
and five hours to reach Nanaimo and Victoria respectively.
A tendency of agricultural life in British Columbia is the
development of Co-operative Associations, whereby the producer and consumer are brought into closer touch, mutually
benefiting by the elimination of the middleman. These Associations which are assisted by government loans, enable the
farmer to get the best prices for his produce with the least
amount of trouble to himself.
The current market prices for various produce are shown
in Appendix F (page 46).
The accessibility of the lands for marketing purposes carries with it in natural course, the greatest facility for getting
in the farmer's own supplies. He is in no isolated loneliness
remote from centres, like the early pioneers of Winnipeg.
Within a very few hours he can obtain from Victoria or from
the City of Vancouver anything that he wants—not only fertilizers, tools, chicken food, and similar farm requirements, but
also every article of home use known to the civilized world.
It is not always easy to realize that new countries like British
Columbia are no longer in the pioneer stage, but have houses,
shops and hotels which would compare favorably with those
Vancouver Island is pre-eminently the home of mixed
farming. The excellent marketing facilities, growing population, equable climate, abundant rainfall, and the absence of
blizzards, snow-storms, heavy frosts and violent winds, all
relieve the farmer, whatever lines he may adopt, from the ruinous risks which cannot be wholly avoided elsewhere. But a
mixed farm in Vancouver Island is as nearly free from hazards
of any kind as any human enterprise can be. As it is security
above all things that we are anxious to offer, we particularly
recommend mixed farming. A settler may prefer to devote
most energy and the greater part of his capital to one or to
another of the varied modes of production open to him, according to his individual taste, and for this reason rather full details
are given of some among them; but we advise variety. There
is not a district in the Island where diversified farming may
not be carried on more profitably than any special branch of
the industry. The farmer derives a continuous income by
studying the needs of his locality and adjusting his production
to the demand. He can go in for dairying, grow hay and a
little grain, keep poultry, hogs and sheep and raise a great
variety of fruits and vegetables. His hay and roots will support cows, each yielding a considerable yearly profit. Sheep
and pigs find a ready sale at all seasons. Turkeys as well as
other poultry can be reared to bring an early profit, and all this
livestock has a particular attraction for that reason. Fruit, a
very important and lucrative crop, needs time. While the
trees are reaching the productive stage (and they must not be
allowed to bear until well established), vegetables, small fruits
and the dairy will earn an income, and the smaller livestock can
wander in the young orchard, getting part of its living and
doing good to the soil.
[Page Thirteen}
Potatoes, turnips, beets, mangolds, carrots, and other roots
all grow in profusion wherever their cultivation has been attempted. Potatoes sell for about $15.00 to $20.00 a ton. The
Dominion census places the average yield of potatoes for all
Canada at about 6y2 tons per acre. Carrots, turnips, parsnips
and beets sell at an average of about 50 cents a bushel.
Besides natural grasses and vetches, which afford excellent
grazing for cattle, sheep and horses, cultivated grasses grow in
profusion wherever sown. Red clover, sainfoin, alsike, timothy
and brome grass yield two crops in the season under favorable
conditions. Hay from rye grass, orchard grass, timothy and.
red clover averages 2 to 3 tons to the acre and sells for about
$20.00 a ton.
Celery is' grown as yet in limited quantities only, but the
soil and climate warrant its production on a large scale. Properly grown and packed it commands an unlimited market, and
should be a very paying crop.
Indian corn, melons and tomatoes are profitable items in
the output of a small farmer, and are successfully grown, the
demand exceeding the supply. On the West Coast of Vancouver Island, cranberries are easily grown, and as they are
much liked in Canada they should prove a lucrative crop.
Experiments have proved that the soil and climate of parts
of the Island are admirably adapted for the growth of flowering
bulbs, and a considerable business in these has already been
established. The market is a good one, for bulbs are in demand, the bulk of those used in North America being imported
from Europe. The Pacific Coast uses 50,000,000 every year.
The profit derivable from bulbs is estimated at over $2000.00
Bees are also beginning to attract attention and should
become a very profitable side-line. A considerable quantity of
[Page Fourteen]
local honey of first-class quality is found in the markets and
is eagerly bought.
On the mainland of British Columbia hops are grown,
averaging 1,500 lbs. to the acre. Most of them go to the
British Market, but local breweries, Eastern Canada and Australia are buying more every year. An exhibit of British Columbia hops at the New Zealand International Exhibition, 1906, was
much commended and was the means of opening a new market.
There is no reason why hops should not be grown on Vancouver
Island, and the facilities for shipping will be greatly improved
with the opening of the Panama Canal.
Grain, though of course grown in enormous quantities on
the Prairies, is not a large feature of Vancouver Island farming.
Wheat is only cultivated for fodder and poultry-feed. Barley
and oats can be grown, but the small acreages which yield such
good profits on the Island do not favor grain crops, as the land
can be utilized to greater advantage. Rye is grown to a limited
extent, but is used for fodder.
Horse-breeding, even on a small scale, pays well. A
farmer with a couple of Clyde mares should be able to raise
two foals a year and get a certain amount of work
out of the mothers. These foals sell as yearlings for $100.00
to $125.00. If the farmer has enough pasture, they can be
kept until they are rising four, when they are ready for breaking and can be put to work. Strong, heavy four-year-old
Clydes are worth $300.00 to $400.00 or even $500.00. There
is a steady demand for heavy draught horses. Hackney breeding is also worthy of attention, and a good stamp of "general
purpose" horse that can plough and draw a good load and yet
trot in harness, is always in demand.
A settler with a good team can earn $7.00 per diem when
working out at odd times.
While different settlers adopt different methods to bring
their wild lands into cultivation, they have one desire in common, namely, to obtain as soon as possible some return from
their land without incurring much extra expense. This can
best be done by purchasing a small herd of Angora goats.
They will thrive on what will not support a cow, even where
sheep will scarcely live, and the underbrush on logged lands
may be kept under control or destroyed by properly utilizing
the land as pasturage for these animals. When the brush is
killed, the cost of clearing is materially reduced and there
is greater protection against forest fires. With the small
timber to be found on these lands the fencing of ten or twenty
acres is not a very formidable task. This amount of land will
support a flock of 20 to 30 goats. They will need a shed to
stand in when it is very wet and a little hay during the worst
part of the winter.
The mohair from the clipping will bring in a small sum,
the natural increase will supply you with goat mutton once in
a while, the milk is excellent for young children, the skins can
be made into fine rugs, and when you are ready to clear out
the stumps you will find that the goats have paid their way
by clearing the land of brush, briars and ferns.
A registered buck and 20 does should cost not more than
S75.00 to S125.00, the annual value of the mohair should run from
S25.00 to S30.00. the kids would easily be worth another $30.00,
and the cost of maintenance is almost nil. So Angora goats will
not only help to clear and manure the land, but will at the same
time produce an annual revenue but little less than their original
cost price.
Dairying is a most profitable industry on Vancouver
Island, especially in the production of cream, the skim-milk
being fed to pigs. An advantage of the industry is its contribution to the soil.
The dairy pays handsomely, especially where the farmer
is not obliged to employ skilled labor for milking and butter-
making. The establishment of co-operative creameries at
Duncan, and in the Comox, Nanaimo, and other districts, has
made it possible for farmers to conduct dairying operations on
a liberal scale, and these associations have had great commercial
success. The cream is generally delivered three times a week in
summer and twice in winter. As a rule several farmers club together, taking it in turns to collect and deliver all their cream,
thus saving a great deal of time. If preferred, the cream can be
shipped to the cities by rail or steamer.
On arrival at the creameries, the output of each farm is
tested for percentage of butter fat. cheques being forwarded
monthly in payment. Thus a steady and reliable income is
assured to the farmer in proportion to the number of cows in
milk. In addition he shares the profits of the creamery as a
commercial enterprise, according to the number of shares
which he holds. Butter fetches a high price—the Duncan
creamery getting generally 5c. a pound more than other creameries on the Island and Mainland. In summer the price of
butter is from 30c. to 35c. and in winter from 40c. to 45c.—
the retail prices being from 35c. to 50c. according to the time
of year. The British Columbia Government encourages by
liberal financial assistance the building of creameries at points
in the Island where they are needed.
[Page Seventeen]
With the growth of cities and towns the business of supplying milk and cream for domestic use is becoming a profitable and important branch of dairy farming in localities where
the railway run is short enough for supplies to reach the town.
The abundant rainfall and mild winters especially favor milk
production the year round.
Careful trials have shown that by feeding cows wholly on
green forage crops in the stables, from two to five times as much
milk can be produced from one acre as from pasturing the same
land. Many more cows can be kept on a given area and the
productive capacity of the land can be rapidly increased. The
saving of manure and its application to the best advantage is
one of the great gains of soiling.
For this system of feeding a variety of green crops must
necessarily be grown in succession, so that there may be a
continuous and certain supply. The following are recommended for this Island: Red clover and timothy sown separately in July and August; crimson clover and barley sown in
August and September, and wheat and rye sown in September
and October—all these for use in winter and early spring.
Oats, spring barley and peas sown in early Spring; vetches,
also corn and soy beans, planted in May; cowpeas, corn, millets,
and Hungarian grass, sown in June—these for cutting in the
summer and fall. Two crops from the regular mowing lands of
grass and clover will fill in the gaps, and to supplement the
winter feeding the output of a silo is an advantage but not a
necessity. At least 110 lbs. of green forage should be provided
daily for every 1.000 lbs. weight of cow—this on an average,
as the quantity should vary with the character of the forage.
One of the points of gain by soiling is saving the food
expended by the animal in its exertion to procure its food at
pasture. Unlike the horse, a cow does not require much
exercise to keep it condition.    It is a mistake to water but once
[Page Nineteen]
a day, if they can be induced to drink two or three times a day
it should be done.
The minimum space allotted to a cow is 600 cubic feet.
but double this amount is preferable. The stalls should be
from 2>y2 to 4 feet in width, the length depending on the size
of the cow; in rear of the stall there should be a shallow drain.
16 to 24 inches wide, into which the droppings will fall. Use
no damp material under a cow. no rotten straw, and no moist
earth or sawdust. An excess of bedding is undesirable, as the
manure becomes too bulky and is lessened in value per load.
A good combination is 5 or 6 lbs. straw and 10 or 12 lbs. of dry
earth or sawdust. Let the cow byres have plenty of ventilation and yet be free from draughts, and see that the stalls are
regularly cleaned and disinfected; heat and flies reduce not
only the quantity but also the quality of the milk.
In figuring the profits from dairying a great many items
that might easily be overlooked should be taken into consideration : Capital invested, time consumed, price of feed, expense
of transportation, life of cow. etc. One of the things which
should not be overlooked in this connection is the value of the
manure in improving the soil. The actual money received is
only one of the benefits that must be considered in figuring
the gains and losses. The general average compiled from
statistics seems to indicate a return of from $100.00 to $200.00
per annum per cow. It must be remembered, however, that
as in every other occupation, the rewards are to him who works
diligently, patiently, intelligently and perseveringly.
Where good land cleared and in cultivation costs more
than $300.00 per acre, the dairy farmer is advised to adopt the
soiling system of dairying. It is only by this method he can
realize his ideal of making one acre support one cow.
The farmer will also find the rearing of the best of his
heifer calves a very profitable undertaking, as there is a strong
and growing demand for .young stock of good milking strain.
[Page Tzcevtr]
These will sell readily at remunerative prices, good grade cows
being now  worth  from  $80.00 to $100.00 each.
For the dairy farmer, as well as the mixed farmer in
general, pigs are a useful and profitable item. A farm with
five to twelve cows or over has large quantities of skim milk
to dispose of, and the best use to which it can be put is to turn
it into fine dairy-fed pork, for which there is a heavy demand.
A breeder can get $3.50 a head for six-week pigs, and many
farmers instead of breeding pigs, buy them as soon as their
cows come into milk. The live-weight value of dairy-fed hogs
is about 9c a pound and the mixed farm that has a few brood
sows can use up all its waste. Culled fruit, potatoes, and all
kinds of farm and garden refuse make good pig-food. In
summer the pigs make their own living by ranging over wild
land, rooting and eating all sorts of grass, etc. They do good
by cleaning land of bracken, digging deep and taking it out.
Roots can be grown plentifully for the benefit of the pig in winter.
When getting ready for sale meal is given along with other food.
There is a splendid local market for pork in all the towns, and in
Vancouver there are big packing houses which will take all the
pigs that can be obtained.
No branch of farming pays better than poultry and eggs,
and none begins to show profit more quickly. All the favorable
conditions are here, and chickens are successful}- raised on
nearly every farm. The great bulk of poultry produced on
Vancouver Island is not from extensive poultry farms, but
from small places, country homes or farms of a few acres.
Fruit and poultry do so well together that wherever there are
even a few fruit trees we find hens also. Their number need
not be great, but even from the products of a small flock there
[Page Twenty-One]
is something on which the beginner in the country can depend.
It is common in these districts to see chickens about the stumps
of the newly-cut trees.
This is a branch of farm work that the women and children
can manage while the breadwinner earns their living. All sorts
of fowl are found here—geese, turkeys, chickens, ducks, guinea
fowl, and pigeons.   There are conditions favorable for all.
Table fowl sell from $7.00 to $12.00 per dozen wholesale.
Chickens sell at from $4.00 to $8.00 per dozen wholesale.
Ducks sell at from $8.00 to $10.00 per dozen wholesale.
Geese sell at from $1.50 to $2.00 each wholesale.
Turkeys sell at 28c to 30c per lb. wholesale.
One must understand the business of poultry-keeping
thoroughly to make a success of it, and for this reason it is
best for a novice to begin slowly, learning as much as possible
from good books on the subject and from poultry papers, and
as he profits from experience, gradually enlarging his plant.
The work is interesting and not hard, but requires very careful
attention to details to ensure success. Nearly all failures in
the poultry business can be attributed to persons beginning
quickly on a large scale, before knowing thoroughly all the
important points connected with this industry. Housing the
birds can be done very reasonably in this climate, open wire
front houses facing the south being found to give good satisfaction. Wheat comprises the bulk of the feed, besides which
bran, beef scraps, and shell are generally fed; the latter can
be had for the hauling in many places near the coast. As to
breeds, White Wyandottes, Plymouth Rocks, and Rhode Island
Reds will be found the best, while for a strictly "egg farm" the
White Leghorns cannot be beaten; but whatever breed is determined on, a good laying strain should be- procured.
Government bulletins on poultry farming are supplied free
of charge, and the Vancouver Island Development League
published a very practical treatise from the pen of a successful
poultry farmer on the Island—this booklet can be had free by
application to the Secretary.
[Page Twenty-Two]
Fruit farming in British Columbia has been much advertised, and for those who wish to take up this branch of endeavor, some phases of the business and some statistics are
given—See Appendix D, page 43.
We would wish, however, to warn the reader who proposes to go in for fruit exclusively against a too optimistic
outlook. No settler should take up the growing of large fruits
as a commercial undertaking unless he is prepared to plant at
least 20 acres of good shipping varieties and can afford to wait
until the trees come into bearing. The reason of this is that
adequate profits only come to those who are able to ship fruit
in carload lots, the profits in sending small consignments is
very small.
The disadvantages which apply to the growing and marketing of larger fruits do not affect the small fruit industry.
Berry crops have the advantage of reaching maturity and
giving profits the second year after planting. Strawberries,
raspberries, loganberries, blackberries, black, red and white
currants all grow well and produce large crops. Gooseberries
also find a ready market. The greatest drawback is the labor
required for picking, but in settled districts this is generally
done by children, who are glad to earn pocket money. The
settler can market at high prices a portion of his crop and sell
the balance to a jam factory if one is in operation in the district,
or if not he can bottle or jam the fruit himself, as all home made
bottled fruit or jam commands a high price in town or country.
Valuable information on all branches of fruit growing and
packing is found in the Government publications, which are
obtainable free of charge.
[Page Twenty- Three]
It is most important that a man should not take up more
land than he can work with the capital at his command, nor
should the whole capital be sunk in land; money must be reserved to work it. No mortgage can be put on the land unless
the title is in the name of the occupier, but the most practical
plan is to buy no more land than there is money to pay for
either at once or within three or four years, and to work meantime. Should new capital be required later, the holder will
then be free to raise it by mortgage, and at the same time hold
his property, which he cannot do by any of the instalment-
purchase plans. It may be pointed out that, owing to the
steady growth of population and the enormous trade increase
which is bound to result from the opening of the Panama Canal
(which will bring Vancouver 6.000 miles nearer to England
by sea), land in Vancouver Island and the other parts of British
Columbia adjoining the sea coast is bound to rise largely in
value during the next few years. No risk therefore, is entailed
by purchasing land at a reasonable price, and if in a few years'
time the settler should wish to realize on his investment, he
should be able to sell his holding at a good profit.
It must not however, be supposed that you can purchase
at Prairie values. The value of agricultural land on Vancouver
Island cannot be compared to that of the Prairie Provinces.
Vancouver Island is bound to be a densely settled country. The
southern and midland portions are becoming popular districts
for those whose means enable them to leave the strenuous life
of the Prairies with its extremes of temperature, for the
climate and beauties of the Island. It is reasonable,
therefore, that the land should cost more than in other parts of
Western Canada, but it is worth more. The isolation and solitude of the Prairie farms in Manitoba and the North West
are a serious handicap.    A family sees no new face for months
[Page Twenty-Five]
  e lower picrure
represeofs Fbe
same Pype of land
r>ear Parksville
under profitable
cuiriuarion, bofb
" >ese properties
re available
for sel'Memenl'
lo Clients of
Island  Fruil'
at a time, whereas in .Vancouver Island there is an attractive
social life, and the pleasures of humanizing intercourse and
sport, denied to the dweller in the remote plains of the mainland. These advantages alone would be worth paying for but
on the business side also the higher price per acre of Vancouver
Island will pay for itself in greater all round productivity, better
climate and higher prices.
A man could start a 20-acre forest farm with an available
capital of about $3,000.00, of which at least $2,000.00 must be
cash in hand. The following capital account represents the
mean figures of four different estimates, the result of actual
Outlay required.
Twenty acres at $40.00 per acre  $ 800.00
Five acres cleared  and  stumped. $200.00....    1000.00
Small house         400.00
Chicken  houses  and  outbuildings       200.00
Furniture        125.00
Wagon  and  implements         150.00
Light  horse          150.00
Pigs  and  chickens            50.00
Seeds and fruit trees          50.00
Fencing, gates and sundries       100.00
If only $2000.00 can be found in cash, a portion of the
purchase price can usually be spread over a short term of years
or obtained on mortgage at about 8 per cent.
In considering these figures it must be remembered that
all labor on clearing, stumping, building and fencing has been
allowed for at the rate of $2.50 per day for axeman and $4.00
for carpenters, and the estimates are strictly based on what
it would cost to take hold of a piece of average timbered land
[Page Twenty-Eight]
and   establish  a  comfortable   home,  and   a   revenue   producing
property at short notice.
A practical agriculturist, reading the above figures, will no
doubt remark that by the time it is put into cultivation, land
in Vancouver Island is not so cheap after all.
He should however, remember that the initial cost of the
land is of less importance than the question whether, from a piece
of land that has cost a certain figure, when improved a substantial living can be made. This can be done undoubtedly
on Vancouver Island, and while the settler can live comfortably on his land and have an assured income, his holding will
increase in value and add to his capital.
[Page  Twenty-Nine]
On taking up wild land the first difficulty confronting the
beginner is how to make a start. On general principles we
would recommend the following procedure.
If his property is some distance from a hotel or boarding-
house, he should purchase a tent and camp outfit, the whole of
which should not cost more than $25.00 to $50.00. Having
camped on his property, unless there is a running stream, the
first thing to be done is to dig a well. Good water is found
on all these lands at a depth of from 15 to 20 feet. The next
thing is to clear a site for the house. In doing this it will
probably be necessary to hire help or a team of horses to get
the stumps out of the ground.
For building the house a carpenter (who can be obtained
locally) should be employed; for the better class of buildings
we would advise architect's plans and specifications,, which
can be obtained at our office, but for the simpler forms of
bungalows the local carpenters will give plans and estimates
and make all arrangements for lumber and building materials.
The new settler might assist in the building, but unless he is
a carpenter he Avill find it more profitable to start a vegetable
garden for home use. By the time the house is ready for
occupation he should have got sites prepared for such outbuildings as he intends to erect. As soon as these are completed he will be in a position to get a cow, a few laying hens
and maybe a pig, but he must remember that for all these he
will have to buy locally, at the start, a certain amount of feed.
The next undertaking is to commence clearing a few acres of
ground around the house. How to do this is fully explained
in a bulletin on land clearing issued free by the Provincial
Agricultural  Department.
[Page  Thirty-One]
A Royal Commission on Agriculture is now collecting
evidence as to the best method by which the Government can
help the farming industry, and there is no doubt that one of
their recommendations will be that Government assistance in
some form or other should be given the settler to help him clear
his land.
The great thing .to remember is that as much land as possible should be cleared and ready for spring sowing. The
extent of this will vary with the settler, those who can devote
all their time to it and can pay for hired labor should by the
end of the first year have quite a few acres under cultivation,
whereas the settler who has meanwhile to earn his daily bread
by outside work and can devote only his spare time to his own
property must not expect much more than a small vegetable
No new settler should expect to be able during the first
year to make a living off his holding of wild land. Till he has
brought some of it under cultivation he can nearly always
obtain work either as a farm hand (in which case he would
get board and lodging in addition to wages—see Appendix G.
page 47) or else working in the lumber mills or on Government
roads, or possibly casual labor for a certain number of days each
week. During all this time he will not only be able to put by
some money but will also be utilizing his spare time in converting his holding into a revenue producing property.
Unless the settler has his own team it is better to hire a
man to plough the first clearing. The soil, according to locality,
may require a dressing of lime or chemical fertilizer, but it is
important that newly broken virgin soil be well worked so as
to expose it to the air.
What to plant on the clearing is a matter for individual
taste, fruit trees and berry bushes might be planted with a
view to future profit and meanwhile vegetables for home use
could be grown between them, but the main idea should be to
grow firstly such things as are necessary for home consumption and afterwards produce for the market.
[Page Thirty-T-u'o]
The Alberni and East Coast districts of Vancouver Island
are neither pioneer lands nor lonely tracts. When a man
moves his family into this comparatively new country in order
to establish a home, he need not wait for the advantages of
civilization to follow him. Roads have been constructed.
Schools and churches are established. Post offices are within
easy reach. All the facilities of business are at the settler's
disposal. A well supplied general store can always be found,
also good hotel accommodation. Families have all the social
environment which would be theirs in other communities.
Nature repays bountifully the labors of the settler; when his
day's work is done she provides as generously for his recreation.
It is to be expected and hoped that most settlers on these
farms will be family men. The facilities for bringing up and
educating children are therefore important. A grave wrong
would be done to them if they were taken where schools were
lacking or inferior. Men have been rightly deterred by this
consideration from taking up pioneer work in the interior.
The education available is equal if not better than in any
other part of rural Canada or U. S. A. Every child from 7 to
14 years old must attend school, and all public schools, including secondary schools, are free. The Government builds
a school house, pays a teacher, and provides for incidental
expenses in every district where 20 children between the ages
of 6 and 16 can be brought together, and the Public Instruction
Authority has power to assist schools where there are even
as many as ten children. Contiguous areas can combine in
order to bring together the necessary number of pupils to earn
the Government grant. The Council of Public Instruction is
authorized by the law to grant a subsidy towards a Schoolhouse
where there are less than 20 pupils. In practice, there are
educational   facilities,   provided   either   by   Government   or   by
[Page   Thirty-Three]
local funds for all children, and the spirit of the law is that
education is compulsory and universal. There are high schools
at Victoria, Duncan, Ladysmith and Nanaimo, and one is to be
established at Alberni, and there are many excellent private
boarding schools to which the older children can be sent as they
grow up, funds being provided through the progressive prosperity
of the farm. The colleges of Victoria and Vancouver are affiliated to McGill University, Montreal, and the Legislature recently
passed an Act providing for the establishment of a University
of British Columbia. The buildings are already in course of
erection at Point Grey, the choice residential municipality of
Vancouver City, and 2,000,000 acres of public land have been set
apart to provide, by their sale, an endowment fund for this great
educational establishment.
Progress is the note of the whole idea of migration to
Vancouver Island. Settlers are not expected to be rich when
they land. In a large majority of cases their whole capital
is laid out on the purchase of a farm and the reserve fund
necessary to work it. Little by little however, as more and
more land is brought under the plough, the income increases,
debt is paid off, and money begins to be deposited in the bank.
There is thus a surplus for education ; the children who while
young went to the rural school provided by the Government,
can presently be transferred to a high school or one of the colleges in Victoria or Vancouver, which are within easy reach;
later, they will go to a University.
To the small farmer in England the idea of sending his
sons to a University seems visionary, but the teaching here
does not unfit them for following their parents' life. On
the contrary, classes in scientific agriculture, on the chemistry of soils, and on similar subjects, send them home as
valuable assets in the improvement of the family fortunes.
Some of course take up professions, and thus it will come
about that a man who went out with no more capital than a
stout heart, a good wife, and a pair of strong hands, will have
earned a farm, added to it, and educated his family, till, in his
[Page Thirty-Five]
later years, he has doctors, lawyers, or clergymen among his
sons, while others are enlarging and improving the freeholds
which his own courage and industry enabled him to acquire
for them.
Apart from home gardening, lawn tennis, and the other
amusements (which can all be made available if the settler will
take the trouble to provide them for his family), Vancouver
Island affords an almost unlimited variety of field sports. The
opportunities for fishing and shooting are unsurpassed, and for
general and varied outdoor recreation the island has no equal on
the continent. This may sound exaggerated, but it is literally
true. For the motorist there are splendid roads leading in different directions from the cities, and some of these, particularly
the famous Island drive, are not exceeded anywhere in the
world for rugged grandeur and striking beauty. The run from
Victoria to the Alberni district, by the Island and Canadian
highways, is a scenic marvel.
The golf player will find in Victoria, Duncan and Ouali-
cum, links which rival the best on the continent. He can
indulge in his favorite sport all the year round without any discomfort, and at least ten months out of the twelve under ideal
Cricket, tennis, football, Government rifle range shooting.
hockey, lacrosse, baseball, bowling on the green, motor-boating,
yachting, canoeing, trap-shooting, bicycling, riding, driving,
sea-bathing and sailing are among the sports and pastimes
which can be followed during the year, and indeed there is not
a month in which sport of various kinds is not available.
Appendix I (page 51 et seq.) contains a detailed account
of the field sports and fishing available in Vancouver Island,
which is resorted to by wealthy residents on the mainland of
British Columbia, and also by visitors from Eastern Canada
and the United States, for sport which the settler will find
either at his own door or within easy reach.
[Page  Tliirly-Sez-en]
First comes the man who has made his money on the
Prairies, and no longer finds it necessary to work for a living, but
intends to enjoy the rest of his life in a pleasant climate with
congenial surroundings.
Next the man who by homesteading in the Northwest is
able to command a small amount of capital and now wishes to
continue farming nearer civilization. Following him is the man
who on account of his own health or that of his family is unable
to stand the severe winters of Eastern and Northern Canada,
and last, but by no means least, the tradesman and unskilled
worker. All these types are keenly desired as settlers, and all
can find a prosperous and happy home on the Island. But we
want to lay special emphasis on the opportunity presented to
the last named. There are thousands of men who earn good
wages all spring, summer and autumn, and whose savings might
profitably be employed in starting a farm, whereas too often they
are eaten up by the expense of living in the cities during the
winter months, when they find it difficult to obtain employment.
[Page  Thirty-Eight]
Aver. Temperature
.    35.36 inches
22.5 inches
29.5 inches
Yearly Snowfall....
.      8.8 inches
16.35 inches
3.2 inches
Bright Sunshine	
.   1878 hrs. 36 mh
i.    1932 hrs. 36 min.
1661 hrs. 12 min
The Tables for 1912 given below show the equability of temperature
and ratio of rainfall and precipitation. It will be seen that even in
November, December, January, and February, there is considerable
bright sunshine registered. The equability of all these conditions have
been generally the same for the past twenty years, and because of the
intersection of the isothermal lines, cannot be otherwise than perr
ent.    Living conditions, therefore, are u
lequalled in
Vancouver Island.
MONTH   BY   MONTH   (1912).
1912.             Jan.    Feb.    Mar.    Apr.      May    June
July    Aug.    Sep
.     Oct.    Nov.    Dec.     Tear.
Highest temperature 52.5      53.9      5S.3      6LS      84.2      S5.9
Lowest temperature 23.5      2S.5      27.2      30.2      37.9      41.2
7.1 IL "i
3'_33    Tm   35S4      °l'%
Duration of Bright
1S.30 193.06 1S6.5
H7.42    32.4S    2,54 1,1.12
In reducing snowfall to rain,  1 inch of snow
■ eauivalent to 0.
The above are figures for one year.
from 1902 to 1911 at Victoria show'that
is  50.06  degrees.    The  highest   summer
and the lowest 38.6 degrees.    Lowest a-i
degrees   and  the   highest  53.16   degrees.
25.57 inches, and the snowfall 8.68 Whe
The recorc
the yearly a
erage winter
The   yearlj
s of the ten years
-erage temperature
was  88.5  degrees
temperature 28.07
rainfall   averages
[Page Thirty-Xine]
as yearlings at from $80 to $100.    There is a good demand for Hackneys.
Light, useful horses can be purchased from S150 up.
Pigs. Pigs pay well and are good scavengers, thriving on culled fruit
and skim-milk, or they can be safely turned loose on wild land. They
will practically make their own living while doing an immense amount of
good to the land, turning it up deep and taking out the bracken. Roots
can be grown with profit for winter feed, but in getting ready for sale
some meal is fed also. Young pigs sell at about six weeks old for $4
Dairy-fed hogs sell (live-weight) at from 9c. to 10c. per lb. and the
average price of dressed pork for the past few years has been 16c. per lb.
Sheep. The late Dr. A. T. "Watt, who kept the largest flock of South-
downs in  the  Province, writes:—
'.'Nowhere in Canada is there to be found so equable a climate or an
environment so suitable for sheep as in the area comprised in the
southern end of Vancouver Island. Nowhere on the Continent do
sheep thrive better than in the country bordering- the North Pacific.
Recent reports show that in the adjacent State of Washington the average wool clip per sheep was 8yi lbs.—the highest in the United States,
'the sheep kept in British Columbia are mostly of the medium or short-
woolled breeds, since the greatest profit here is in mutton. There is,
however, a consensus of opinion that, for such sheep, the wool clip
averages high."
Mr. J. D. Reid, of "Glenrosa," owner of a registered flock of Oxford
Down sheep, says:—
"I have always found sheep farming most profitable. With ordinary care and judicious management 120 per cent, lambs may be depended
upon, and fat lambs readily realize $5 per head. Hand feeding is rarely
necessary, and the expense of running a flock of sheep is small."
Mutton commands a price ranging from 15c.  to 22c.  per lb.
Hay.    Rye   grass,   orchard   grass,   timothy,   red   clover   and   oat  hay
yield about 2 to 3 tons per acre, and the price averages $20 per ton.
Oats. Oats yield from 40 to 60 bushels per acre, selling at prices
from $25 to $30 per ton of 60 bushels.
Potatoes. Potatoes yield from 6 to 8 tons per acre, or with chemical fertilizer up to 10 or 12 tons.
The following figures show what has been done on Island farms:—
"Nine-tenths of an acre of bottom land produced 12 tons; 3 lbs. seed
potatoes produced 68 lbs.; 60 lbs. Earlv Thoroughbred produced
1.500 lbs."
Hops. Hops have been grown with great success in the Duncan
and Cowichan districts.
Peas. Peas produce from 30 to 40 bushels per acre, and sell at $3.00
per bushel.
Consulting "Agricultural Statistics, 1912," published by the Department of Agriculture, we find the average yield per acre for various
crops on Vancouver Island to be as follows: —
Wheat  29.5 bushels      Hay       2.2   tons
Oats    62.1       " Potatoes     7.2
Barley   33.7       " Other root-crops   9.7
Rye   24.0      " Other   crops    12.6      "
Grain  hay   2.0 tons Market-garden    crops 11.5
[Page Forty-Two]
The cost of purchasing 20 acres of land on the terms offere
this Company, and of setting out 10 acres has worked out in pra
as follows:—
Twenty acres at $40 per acre       !
Ten acres cleared and stumped at $200 	
House costing at the rate of: one room, $200; two rooms. $350;
three rooms, $500; five rooms, $900 (say three-roomed)	
Wagon  and  implements 	
Preparing land for trees 	
Cost of trees. 480 at 25c. each 	
Setting out at 10c. each 	
Fencing and gates	
The following are conservative
with trees in the older settled distr
the following periods respectively:—
Just   planted     $300      Three years   $600
One year      400      Four years      800
Two  years      500      Five   years      1000
=  the  establishment  as  outlined  at the be-
>e worth approximately as  follows:—
Then ten acres adjoining the orchard, which have only been partially
cleared through the household wood supplies having been cut from
them, will be worth at least $100 per acre, which brings the value of
the establishment to $12,250. which should throughout the life, of the
owner vield a net income, after all expenses have been paid, of at least
$1,000 per annum.
As no returns can be expected from the trees for at least five years,
it will be necessary to make expenses by growing root crops, small fruits,
onions,  etc.,  and by keeping poultry  and  pigs.
[Page Forty-Three]
10,368 Horses     $1,508,720
11,500 Cattle — beef   690,000
1.804 Cattle  — dairy     182.030
229.610 Sheep   867,890
3,131 Swine      47,005
3,326.595 lbs. of Poultry   548,787
Total value  of  Live Stock .
7.070.000 lbs. of Butter  1,414,000
3,718.857 lbs. of Cheese   580,984
2,090,000 gallons  Milk    629,000
Total  value  of  Dairy  Produce	
4,348,437 lbs. Bacon, Ham, etc  728.166
4.854.869 lbs.  Mutton,  Lamb    447,569
6.884.287 lbs.  Pork   1.140.331
2.420.620 lbs.   Lard  332,748
Total value of Meats
11.464.230 lbs.  of  Apples         256,324
7.594.150 lbs.  other  Fruits        265,663
172,987 lbs.   Berries            92,941
tal value of Fruits .
5,616.000 doz.   Eggs   ..
515,889 lbs.   Honey
Total value of Eggs and Honey   1,398,575
704,899 lbs.   Malt     18,024
103,800 tons  Hay   1.710,982
2,410,810 bush. Grain, Barley, Wheat, Oats, Rye 2.397,675
Nursery   Stock     149,136
Miscel.—Canned  Meats, Jams,  etc  396.995
Total     4,672,812
Total imports of Farm Produce for 1912.... $15,803,545
Referring to the above figures, the imports of butter and milk for
the year 1912 increased by 2^4 million pounds and lyi million gallons
respectively over the figures for the previous year, proving how increasingly great is the demand for dairy produce.
[Page Forty-Four]
The   following   statistics   of   poultrv   production   and   import   into
ish Columbia for the year 1912 are furnished by the Government:—
5,404.000 lbs.
SI. 351.000
3,437,750 doz.
2,344,595 lbs.
S 422,027
1,872.000 doz.
982.000 lbs.
3.744.000 doz.
S 126.760
7,730,595 lbs.
9,053,750 doz.
These figures indicate the
Vancouver Island.
splendid opportunity
or the poultryman
On comparing the above with the figures for the previous year we
find that although the population has increased bv nearly 100,000. the
imports of poultry have decreased by 2.310,220 lbs., showing the remarkable strides that this industry is making on the Island.
[Page Forty-Five]
Flour,  per  sack.  50 pounds
Bran, per sack.  100 pounds
Wheat, per sack.  100 pounds
.$1.75 to $2.50
Oats, per sack, 100 pounds ....
. $1.50 to $1.70
Barley, per sack.  100 pounds
$1.50 to $1.70
 SI6.00  to  S20.00
Celery,   two  heads  	
Onions, per 7 lbs	
Potatoes,   per   sack  	
Potatoes, new. 4 pounds  	
Cauliflowers,   each   	
 25c.  to  30c.
Cabbage, per pound 	
Asparagus, per pound 	
 35c.  to  40c.
Eggs per dozen	
Cheese,  per pound 	
... 20c. to 30c.
Butter,  per pound	
 40c.  to  50c.
Oranges, per dozen 	
 25c. to 50c.
Lemons,  per  dozen  	
 20c. to 30c.
Apples, 40  pounds  	
.$1.25  to $2.50
Raisins, per pound 	
.... 25c. to 60c.
Bananas, per dozen  	
 30c. to 40c.
Cod. fresh, per pound 	
Cod.   salt,   pei   pound	
....10c.  to   15c.
Halibut,  fresh, per pound ....
 10c. to  15c.
Halibut,   smoked   	
Salmon, fresh, per pound 	
 10c. to 15c.
Salmon,  smoked  	
Oysters, per dozen 	
 40c. to 50c.
Shrimps, per pound	
 25c. to 30c.
Smelts, per pound 	
.... 10c. to 15c.
Herring, per pound 	
Finnan Haddie. per pound ....
Beef, per  pound  	
 15c. to  30c.
Lamb, per pound 	
  20c. to 30c.
Mutton, per lb	
 15c. to 25c.
Lamb, forequarter 	
. $1.50 to $2.00
Lamb,  hindquarter	
$2.25 to $3.00
Veal, per  pound	
Geese. Ducks,  Chickens,  per
Fowls, live weight, per pounc
 13c. to 15c.
Ham,  per  pound  	
Bacon, per pound 	
.... 32c. to 35c.
Pork, fresh, per pound 	
.... 20c. to 25c.
Lard, per pound 	
 '■ 25c-
[Page Forty-Six]
For rea
sons o-iven in
the text the comp
lers of
his wor
c are exceed-
ingly  desire
us   of  attracting  to   \ ancouver
working  men.   whe
ther skilled
or unskilled
About all  that
s demar
eled  of
hem is that
they shall be ambitious
and hard-working.
The m
an with
a trade has.
naturallv, advantages; bu
t character is mor
5 important than
skill.   There
is opportun
ty  for all.  a
nd a man of grit
and  de
on  can  look
forward to
a great degre
e ot prosperity.    A voung
couple, pre
pared to show   enterpris
- and  self-denial.  t
an do f
most anxiot
s to get mar
ried families on to
the Ian
There  1
s  seldom  an
' lack  of  work in
ver  Isla
nd from the
beginning o
: March to the end of October.
ters ear
-l $4 per day.
and unskille
d workmen $2.50 per day of ni
te hours
.    The c
ost of board
and lodging while at work need not exceed $30 per month, or less than
that if the circumstances admit of the workman cooking for himself.
Allowing $10 for travelling and $20 for personal expenses, the following
statement shows what cash balance would appear at his credit at the
end of October, allowing for 10 off-days in 35 working weeks.
A Carpenter:—
35  working weeks of 6  days,  less   10  off-days:  200
days at $4.00 per day   $800 00
Eight months' board and lodging, at S30 per month      $240 00
Travelling  and   incidentals     50 00
        290 00
Amount saved in eight months   $510 00
Unskilled Workmen:—
35 working weeks of 6 days,  less   10  off-davs:  200
days at $2.50 per day   S500 00
Eight months' board and lodging at $30 per month      S240 00
Travelling  and   incidentals     50 00
        290 00
Amount saved in eight months   $210 00
Many unskilled workmen earn $3 per day of 10 hours, and first-
class carpenters $5.00 per day of 9 hours.
Farm hands get from $30 to $45 per month with board and lodging.
Granting that the ambition of the reader is to acquire a ten-acre
selection and to occupj- the periods of off-work in clearing and preparing
it to produce whatever he has fixed his mind upon as a source of income later, the tables given in these Appendices show approximately
what amount of capital is required.
[Page Forty-Seven]
Any of the reputable land companies will help a bona-fide settler
by agreeing to sell him a small selection of land on long terms of payment, such as one-fifth of the value in cash and the balance in five equal
annual payments, the balance unpaid bearing interest at 7 per cent, per
annum as offered by this Company.
A man with an initial capital of $250 working at the farm hands'
wage of $30 a month for eight months of the year, paying $80 on account of ten acres in advance and a furrlur S< 4'a; ;'v :,",^ianuv ■.' :be
second year, may reasonably anticipate the following results if he does
effective work on his ranch during the four months when he is not
working for wages. He can erect a temporary cabin which can be
turned into an outhouse later on, and if the land is not heavily timbered,
he can make at least one acre ready for planting.
His cash account would stand as follows
Capital at outset  $250 00     Provisions     4   months    on
Wages earned 8 months at own farm at $17.50  S70 00
$30.00  240 00     Personal expenses      50 00
Two instalments on land   144 00
Interest        23 00
Cabin and fittings   100 00
Tent, tools and utensils      60 00
Cash in hand      43 00
$490 00 $490 00
His balance sheet would  show the  following:—
Assets. Liabilities.
Cash in hand   $43 00      Debt outstanding on land $256 00
Cabin,   Tent,   Tools,   furni- Capital account   531 00
ture,  less   10  per  cent.
depreciation    144 00
Land,  10 acres at cost  400 00
Increased   value   of   1   acre
cleared and stumped .... 200 00
$787 00 $787 00
So that in twelve months his capital has increased from $250 to $531.
During the first years the energies of the settler will be taken
up in earning the money to pay off the debt on the land, and four
months each year will be spent in carrying out improvements. At the
end pi five years, if not earlier, he should arrive at the point where he
can  launch  out  and  make his  income  from  the  land  itself.
A study of the figures given under "Mixed Farming," "Poultry,"
and "Fruit Growing" will show what can be done under the conditions
now obtaining. His ten acres will have been paid for; he. will have the
title in his own hands.   At least six acres will be in cultivation, or ready
[Page Forty-Eight]
Six acres cleared land partly planted  S1500 00
Four acres unimproved      200 00
Other improvements      150 00
The plan outlined can be carried out successfully by any
man. and better still by a young married couple, if the wife is \
go out into service for the first three years and contribute her
to the family pot.
For those so  situated the following figures are. given:—
Wages  of  domestic  servants:—
General servants, from 	
Plain  cooks     S20  to  $30
Good nurses  S20 to S30
Extra good  cooks   $25  to $35 "
Girls of 16, $15 per month and board. There is a good reception
home for girls at the Y.W.C.A. offices, corner Douglas and Broughton
Streets, Victoria.
The different types of soil encountered in Vancouver Island vary
considerably in  character.
This type of soil is found along the coast, especially at the heads
of the inlets, which indent the West coast of the island. It supports
a heavy growth of marsh grass, and the surface is sometimes composed
of a thick layer of partially decomposed fibrous organic matter formed
from the decay of this vegetation. Areas of this land when properly
dyked and drained are very prolific.
Bottom lands are divided into the following sub-classes:—
Beaver Dam.   These areas represent deep accumulation of organic
matter at various stages of decomposition, formed by the damming back
of  small   streams   by   the   industrious   little   animals.     The   conditions
favoring willows and other water growth, also the killing by drowning
of the larger
of   vegetable   matter,
brought down by the
the growth  of onions
hich in time fall and rot, add to the accumulation
hich being decomposed and mixed with silt
reams, produces when drained an ideal soil for
elery, oats, and the bramble fruits. There are
Alberni Valley.
Alder Bottoms. The black soil, rich in humus, :
has been formed by the rotting of the fallen leaves <
which always favors places underlain with clay.
River Bottoms. The
very productive and ar«
farming lands. The soil
vegetable matter reposin
the last-mentioned sub-s
the large fruits on botto
Alberni lands occupying the river valleys are
considered to embrace the most valuable
is generally composed of silt and decomposed
; on a gravel sub-soil. With the exception of
)il the  settler should  never  attempt to  grow
: divided i
> twc
(1) Light sandy loam on a gravel sub-soil. We have here the
ideal condition for all the large fruits, such-as apples, plums, pears and
peaches. The drainage so vital to the welfare of fruit-trees is assured,
and with proper and sufficient cultivation the careful grower will net
a handsome return. Where the land is too light and gravelly for fruit,
the chicken-house should be. located.
(2) The second class of bench land is the red and chocolate loam
resting on a clay sub-soil. There are thousands of acres of this land in
the Alberni Valley and on the East coast of Vancouver Island. The
first settlers rarely tried to clear and cultivate these tracts, as they
were not so easily cleared as the. alder bottom and willow-
Experience is proving that these lands amply repay cultival
clay breaks up freely and mixes with the sandy loam in the :
portion. These shot clay soils produce the heaviest crops i
which, when, ploughed in. add the necessary humus to the s
is the all-purpose soil of Vancouver Island, and is suitable for the cultivation of small fruits, vegetables of all kinds, forage crops, and, when
well drained, the larger fruits.
We have had analysed, at the University of Washington, Pullman
(by the method adopted by the Association of Agricultural Chemists)
specimens of the soil at varying depths from twelve different localities
on these farm lands. The report not only shows percentage of Potash,
Lime, Phosphoric Acid and Nitrogen, but also contains valuable information regarding nature and quantity of chemical fertilizers that
advantageously applied to certain soils which
portion of some of the critical elements of pi;
All  this  information  and  the  suitability  o
various nature of soils is at the disposal of ne-
ion.   The
deal pro-
. low  pro-
The game fish of the Isiand include some of the best sporting
varieties. Practically speaking, all the streams and lakes contain trout
of some kind or other, chiefly the rainbow or cut-throat varieties. Very
large fish are caught in the bigger lakes b3r trolling, but there is no
trout water in British Columbia where the fish will not take a fly.
Larger fish are caught on the fly as a general rule in the streams than
in the lakes. In the. heat of midsummer when the rivers are low and
fly-fishing is hardly practicable except in the early
evening, excellent sport is given by sea trout in the
sea-run fish average heavy; two-pounders being common, tnree-pounaers
by no means rare, and four and even-six-pounders occasionally caught.
As a general rule, they take a Ay well even in the salt water.
Several varieties of Pacific salmon run in millions all along the
coasts of Vancouver Island. Of these the "Spring" salmon are the finest
table fish and attain to the greater weight, although average weight
depends a good deal on locality, as is the case in other salmon countries. The best known and handiest-reached places on Vancouver
Island for the biggest type salmon are Campbell River and Comox on
the east coast and Alberni and Nootka Sound on the west Coast, fifty-
pounders being common at all of these places. Twenty to thirty-
pound fish are common in any of the estuaries when the run of "Springs"
is on. "Spring" salmon are caught in these waters practically all the
year round. In February and March there is a run to the rivers, but
the big run comes in August, September and October, varying in date
according to locality.
There is a run of small cohoes in May and June, but these early
fish, although very game, do not average very large. The big run of
cohoes does not arrive as a rule until the latter part of September,
when their number is legion all over the coast, and the sport they give
is superior for their size to that yielded by the Springs as the}' play
more on the surface. The Autumn cohoe is about nine pounds in
weight on the average.
That British Columbia salmon will not take a fly is a fallacy which
was long since disproved. Both spring salmon and cohoes are caught
in considerable numbers every season by anglers who know how and
where to use a salmon fly, and give splendid sport in suitable waters.
The expert with a spinning bait will be able to kill many large fish
in the rivers.
Most of the fishing for salmon here is in the forr
sea with a spoon, by which means the veriest t3-ro i;
fine  salmon.
Another fine fish is the Steelhead. classed by different authorities as
salmon or trout. It attains a large weight and gives very fine sport on
a good-sized salmon fly expertly fished.
[Page Fifty-One]
 FARMING     IN     VANCOUVER     ISLAND Island, but ha\
For sport with dog and gun there are pheasants, willow grouse, blue
grouse, snipe, quail,  brant, the Canada wild goose,  and duck.
The pheasants are Chinese ring-necks, and the Government (which
restricts the. shooting by law to cock birds) has lately been hatching
and turning out true Mongolian pheasants. In Vancouver Island they
appear to have proved satisfactory', but they are still experimental.
By the nature of the country, the man who makes a good bag of
game works hard for it, but this is one of the fascinations of the sport
to most sportsmen out here, who are not looking for enormous bags
of game found and driven to their guns by beaters, but take a zest and
pleasure in the hard work of a long day with a favorite four-footed
friend. A man who wants luxury with his shooting is little likely to be
suited with what Vancouver Island has to offer him, but the man who
takes a delight in vigorous, outdoor exercise in the company of a good
dog, with an excellent chance of a fair bag of game, can get it at any
Willow Grouse (the local name for Ruffed Grouse) are common all
over the Island. In the early part of the season the birds frequent the
swamps and thickets, where they are difficult to get at, but, when
found, are apt to play into the hands of the pot hunter by the. way they
have of perching in the trees and staying there until he spots and takes
pot-shots at them. Later on, however, when the swamps become overflowed, they take to higher and more open ground, when the sport they
afford over a good dog is by most British Columbia sportsmen considered the best shown by any of the game birds.
The Blue Sooty, or Blue Grouse, is a timber bird which is plentiful,
particularly in the. places in the hills where there are bare patches of
rock among the  tall timber.
Shot on level ground over dogs, the blue grouse is not a particularly
hard bird to hit, but among timber, and especially on steep hillsides,
where they invariably fly down-hill at a great pace, they afford shooting which  is  difficult  to  beat for its  sporting quality.
Quail provide very fine sport with a good setter; and snipe can be
found in field ditches in November and December. Canada geese and
wild duck are shot, like quail, over decoys.
Larger game, such as deer, can be found in remoter districts, and
an expedition after bear will not come back empty-handed. Deer-
hunting with dogs is illegal, and the Wapiti, or American elk, is protected altogether for a term of years. Black and grey wolves can be
found in the northern and north-western parts of the Island, and they
fetch a Government bounty of fifteen dollars a head. The panther, or
mountain lion (cougar) yields a handsome skin; but it ranks as vermin
rather than game, the Provincial Government paying the same bounty
as for wolves. To hunt these fine beasts it is necessary to hire a guide,
who will furnish suitable dogs, and this sport, like the pursuit of the
black bear, has the spice of danger which to many sportsmen is an
unequalled attraction.
[Page Fifty-Two]


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