DEPARTMENT OE AGRICULTURE
OP THE province op
THE PROVINCE OF BRITISH COLUMBIA
Printed by Richard Wot.fhkdkn, Printer to the King's Most Excellent Majesty.
1901. To His Honour the Honourable Sir Henri Gustave Jolv de Lotbinieke, K.O. M.d,
Lieutenant-Governor of the Province of British Columbia.
May it please Your Honour :
The Sixth Report of the Department of Agriculture is herewith respectfully submitted.
J. H. TURNER,
Minister of Agriculture.
Department of Agriculture,
Victoria, B. C, 15th July, 1901. 1 Ed. 7 Report on Agriculture.
DEPARTMENT OE AGRICULTURE
The Hon. J. H. Turner,
Minister of Agriculture, Victoria, B. C.
Sir,—Again, owing to unavoidable circumstances, no report has been issued since that of
1895-96. I am unable, also, to present statistical information regarding the agricultural
products and interests, as no provision was made for their collection. I may here be permitted
to say that the absence of these statistics, viewed from any standpoint, is to be deplored. The
information which is naturally sought by the financial institutions of the country, as well as
by many other classes of people, at the Department, is not to be obtained. The value of the
agricultural interests is an unknown quantity, and comparisons as to their progress or otherwise are therefore impossible.
It can be safely asserted, however, that the production of agricultural products, owing to
more enlightened methods, increased number of people engaged in farming, of land under
cultivation, the erection of creameries, etc., has materially increased since the issue of the last
report. In spite, however, of this accession in volume of products, it will be seen by the table
of imports that there has been an enormous increase in the imports of agricultural products.
This is explainable, no doubt, by the great accession to the mining population of the Province,
the opening of new districts, such as Atlin, where practically nothing is produced, the increase
in the lumbering, fishing and sealing industries, and, lastly, the opening of the Yukon country,
the supplies for which are drawn principally from this Province.
The table of exports is quite incomplete, owing to the impossibility of obtaining statistical
information on that head. Were they obtainable, they would, no doubt, account in a great
measure for the increased imports of agricultural products, inasmuch as those to Yukon would
Root crops suffered severely from the depredations of the cut-worms last season. The
same cause affected the production of vegetables generally; even grasses and grain were
affected, but not to the extent of soft, succulent plants.
By means of the Farmers' Institute system, a great deal of valuable, up-to-date information on farming problems has been promulgated throughout the Province, through the Report on Agriculture. 1901
instrumentality of the able lecturers I have been able to secure, and the thousands of valuable
books and pamphlets distributed amongst the members. A marked increase in the membership and interest in the system is apparent during the last year, due to the progressive and
enlightened methods pursued, in contradistinction to the conditions previously imposed.
Further experience seems to accentuate the position I have maintained and expressed on
the subject of Agricultural Associations, viz.: that a further increase of the numbers is not in
the best interests of the country, and that, therefore, the Act under which they are formed
should be repealed, and those now in existence allowed to continue under certain conditions.
The holding of shows by those societies might, with profit, also be more under the supervision
of the Department, especially as relates to the regulation of the dates and the arrangements
for competent judges.
The production of cereals, with the one exception of oats, is not increasing throughout the
Province. This is in line with the policy which has been steadily advocated by the Department for the farmers of the Lower Mainland and Islands. Experience has shown that land
in these sections can be put to much more profitable uses. Wheat, it is true, is produced in
considerable quantities in the Okanagan and Spallumcheen country, and in the vicinity of
Shuswap; but even there, under the most favourable conditions for its production, many
farmers are awakening to the fact that it is not always the most profitable line of agriculture.
Cigar tobacco is being produced in increased quantities at Kelowna, where the Kelowna
Shippers' Union have a cigar factory in successful operation.
The orchards which have been set out during the last few years are gradually coming into
bearing, with the result that the production of fruit is largely increased, and improved methods
of picking, packing and shipping are forcing themselves on producers, in order to compete with
their active competitors to the south.
In consequence of the low price of hops which prevailed for some years, some of the
growers on the Lower Fraser abandoned their production. The better prices, however, which
have since been obtained in England, have compensated those who held on. The largest production is at Lord Aberdeen's ranch, near Vernon.
Co-operative dairying is finding more and more favour with the farmers generally, and
advantage is being taken of Government assistance in several localities for the erection of
creameries. The product is, however, far short of the demand, and since the industry is
certainly profitable, it is a matter of some curiosity why this branch is not developed more
rapidly. One condensed milk factory is in operation; it is situated at Mission City, but results
are not yet known.
The importations of pure-bred live stock from the Eastern Provinces, through the efforts
of the Dairyman's and Live Stock Association, aided by the Government, have been most successful, and will result in great good to the herds of the Province, and profit, it is hoped, to
the breeders in the East.
The production of horned cattle for beef is reported a profitable one in nearly every section
of the country, whether produced in large herds on the extensive ranges of the upper country,
or in the smaller numbers of stall-fed animals. The seasons of late have also been of such a
favourable character that losses have been comparatively few, and feeding has been done at a
minimum cost. Dairy cattle, in consequence of the increased interest in this branch, have of
late acquired a value far in excess of that of former years.
Horses, from various causes—possibly the demand for military purposes being one of the
concomitant reasons—have been much more profitable of late, and the industry has, in consequence, had a considerable impetus given it. Large draught horses are, on the whole, the
Sheep are only produced in limited numbers, principally on Vancouver and the Gulf
Islands. Whilst it is conceded by some that sheep would be more profitable than cattle on the
large ranges of the interior, the concensus of opinions is against their introduction on the
ranges. Another reason against the keeping of sheep on the ranges is the prevalence of coyotes
and other beasts of prey. Wool may be said, under present conditions, to be worthless, and,
therefore, sheep for mutton alone are bred.
The swine industry is capable of great expansion, and in proof of this one has only to look
at the table of imports, where swine and their products, it will be seen, amount to the value of
$945,960, or nearly a million of dollars. The expansion of the dairying industry, which is so
intimately connected with the production of the pig, will no doubt have a great influence in
increasing the production of this valuable article of food. 1 Ed. 7 Report on Agriculture.
The production of poultry is probably one of the most remunerative branches of agricultural industry, and although not prosecuted on a large scale, there are many breeders of fine
poultry in the Province who are reaping a good harvest from a comparatively small outlay.
Mr. Blanchard, a successful poultryman of the State of Washington, says the conditions for
profitable poultry production in this Province are unsurpassed in the North-West; an opinion
which is shared by Mr. Gilbert, the poultry manager of the Central Experimental Farm.
Moreover, Mr. Blanchard says that the breeding of many of the fowls is exceptionally good.
Soiling crops and ensilage, which in the past have been lamentably neglected, are now
receiving that attention in many quarters which is due to them, and we may in the near future
look to a great accession in these important branches for the successful feeding of dairy cows
during the dry months of summer and in winter.
Irrigation of the arid regions of the dry belt, apart from individual efforts, has not been
attempted on any large scale. There are many sections which, with co-operative effort and
the proper conservation of water, can be made valuable additions to the fertile lands now cultivated. This is a question which is deserving of earnest consideration at the hands of the
Government. The utilisation of the waters of the great rivers and lakes, now unavailable for
use by natural gravitation, is also a problem to be solved in this connection.
Dyking of the rich delta lands of the Fraser has been and is being successfully pushed,
and large tracts on both sides of the river are now kept free from water. There are many
such areas which are as yet untouched, except in a very limited way, notably the delta lands
of the Upper Columbia. The dyking operations of the lands of the Kootenay have, I am informed, been abandoned, for the present at any rate.
The raising of the bounty on coyotes to $2 per head is a move highly appreciated by those
affected by these animals. As an additional incentive for their destruction, it is suggested by
a correspondent that the bounty be placed at $2.25, to be paid on the whole skin, not mutilated
by having the ears removed, and that the skins be sold by the Government, which in the un-
mutilated state, he avers, are worth $2.25 in New York, whilst mutilated they are only worth
25 cents. The bounty on panthers and wolves is considered sufficient, although the former are
increasing in parts of the Mainland where formerly they were seldom seen. The wild horse
question still remains unsolved, and huge bands of these worthless beasts still roam over some
of the best ranges of the interior, doing incalculable damage, to the detriment of the cattle
industry. The production of a good class of horses is also rendered abortive in many sections,
owing to the scrub stallions which run with the bands of wild horses. A bounty on blue jays
has been repeatedly asked for, these birds being represented as very harmful. The Government, not being convinced of the wisdom of such a course, has so far declined to interfere.
Plants poisonous to stock consist principally of water hemlock (Cicuta sp.). This plant
has a very wide distribution and has proved fatal to cattle in many cases in the early spring,
when, owing to the scarcity of green food, it is eaten by stock; and growing, as it does, in
soft swampy land, it is easily pulled up by the roots, a very small quantity of which is sufficient
to kill an animal. There are many other reputed poisonous plants, but I have been unable to
trace any fatal results to any of them. A fatality amongst the horses of Mr. Neill Beaton, at
Cherry Creek, engaged my attention, and during two visits which I made to his ranch I failed
to discover any plant, except possibly poisonous mushrooms, which might have caused death ;
and although the symptoms resembled those of mushroom poisoning, it is questionable whether
horses will eat them. Dr. McEachran, the Chief Dominion Veterinary Surgeon, avers that
they are sometimes eaten by stock, and it is quite possible this may have been the cause. I have
taken up this matter with the United States Department of Agriculture, and with the
The Canadian thistle, which is the only weed against which there is any legislation, is, I
regret to say, increasing, the provisions of the Act being of such a character that it is all but
impossible to get people to carry them out. Other noxious weeds are in evidence, and I have
been asked that several of them shall be included in a comprehensive Act.
Plum rot, I regret to say, is prevalent in the humid regions of the Lower Fraser; it is
however, not in evidence either on the islands nor in the upper country of the Mainland.
Vigorous measures are being adopted for the suppression of that and other diseases and pests
by the Board of Horticulture, through the energetic member for the district, Mr. Thos. Cunningham.
The number of noxious insects which are the bane of the farmer and fruit grower, with,
perhaps, the exception of the cabbage butterfly (Pieris rapce), has not increased. The latter (an English pest, I believe) has, unfortunately, made its appearance in the Province. The San
Jose scale and codling moth, thanks to the efficient administration of the Provincial Acts,
have so far been kept out. Grasshoppers did a considerable amount of damage to crops in
parts of the dry belt last year. Cut-worms of several varieties are always in evidence, but the
sudden increase of one of the varieties, the larvse of a moth called Peridroma saucia, amounted
to a plague last year, not only in this Province but in the adjoining American States. The
prompt measures which were adopted by the Department in sending out information, served
to ameliorate the evil effects in a great measure, but much loss had occurred before the people
realised the extent of the mischief. I am pleased to say that thus far there are no indications
of abnormal numbers of these pests appearing this year.
Diseases of animals are not increasing. Tuberculosis is by no means general, although
there are, of course, many isolated cases. The same may be said of glanders amongst
horses and scab amongst sheep. Red water prevails on the Lower Fraser to some extent,
where the cattle often feed on acrid plants of the low lands. Anthrax is reported on some
of the ranges of the Okanagan, and the matter has been referred to the Chief Dominion Veterinarian.
Experiment Stations in different parts of the Province are constantly urged upon the
attention of the Department. It is urged that the Dominion Government Station at Agassiz
only answers for one part of the Province, which, owing to its topography, presents such a
variety of climate and conditions. A small Experiment Station situated in the immediate
neighbourhood of Victoria, so as to be under the immediate supervision of the officers of this
Department, is certainly urgently needed for experiments with seeds and plants which are sent
to the Department, and seeds of forest trees and fodders, and for the conduct of investigation
relating to scientific purposes. The work of the Department is seriously hampered from lack
of such advantages, and I would urge that steps be taken at an early date to secure sufficient
land for the purpose.
The analyses of soils is another subject requiring most earnest attention. At the present
time I have to depend upon the courtesy of the Dominion Chemist, at Ottawa. Inasmuch,
however, as that gentleman's time is fully occupied with other matters, it is quite uncertain
when, if at all, he can do the work and make a report on soils sent him.
Clearing land by the use of blasting powder is found to be the only efficient and least
expensive way of getting rid of the stumps. The action of the Government in endeavouring
to place explosives within the reach of the settlers at cost price is highly appreciated. Some
modification of the conditions will, however, in my opinion, have to be made before the
experiment will prove entirely successful.
Forestry, so closely connected as it is with the farming industry, and forming one of the
principal industries of the Province, has had all the attention bestowed upon it that it is
possible to give with the limited means at my command. I deal with this subject in another
portion of this report. Specimens of our native woods have been and are being collected for
the museum of the Department, for sending away to other parts of the Dominion and other
countries, and much information as to the economic value of our woods, distribution and
extent, has been collected and preserved for future use.
Some fifteen hundred herbarium specimens, representative of the botany of the Province,
have been collected by my almost unaided efforts and placed in the museum of the Department.
These specimens, although not by any means representing the whole number of our plants,
nevertheless form the nucleus of what in time will prove a most valuable adjunct to the
Specimens of grains, grasses, fodder plants and fruits are also being continually added to
the collection in the museum, and made for the purposes mentioned elsewhere.
I have attended a great many meetings of Farmers' Institutes and others in the Province, and some in other places. At a meeting of the North-West Fruit Growers' Association held in Portland, last February, I was the recipient, as representative of the Province, of
much attention at the hands of the officials; I also at that time took the opportunity of
visiting the Agricultural Colleges of Oregon, Washington and Idaho, with a view of studying
their methods and ascertaining the terms on which our young people would be admitted.
These I found to be most liberal, and the system of education most excellent.
The work of the Department has steadily increased, so that temporary assistance has
been found to be absolutely necessary to keep it from falling behindhand. An additional
permanent man, when one can be obtained, combining the requisite qualities which are essen- 1 Ed. 7 Report on Agriculture.
tial in this Department, should be added to the staff, in order that the constantly increasing
duties involving upon me shall not accumulate during my absences on duty connected with the
The topography and climatic conditions seem to lend themselves to a natural division of
the Province into three distinct divisions. I have, therefore, followed the practice of former
years in describing the country, of dividing it as follows, viz.:—
The Upper Mainland—Being all that portion to the eastward of the Coast Range of
mountains, and including within its limits the large cattle ranges and what is known, owing
to the small precipitation, as the Dry Belt.
The Lower Mainland—Being all that portion on the sea coast to the westward of the
Coast Range, and including within its boundaries the rich delta lands of the Fraser. This
part of the country is generally heavily wooded with forests of magnificent timber, and is the
most humid portion of the Province.
The Islands—Being all that portion including Vancouver Island and the islands adjacent
thereto. This portion of the Province partakes somewhat of the characteristics of the two
other divisions, and resembles the first part in the distribution of the flora and its lessened
My thanks are due to Dr. Saunders, Director; Dr. Fletcher, Entomologist and Botanist;
Prof. Shutt, Chemist; and Mr. Gilbert, Poultry Manager of the Central Experimental Farm:
to Prof. J. W. Robertson, Dominion Agricultural Commissioner; Mr. F. W. Hodson, Dominion Live Stock Commissioner; the Directors and Professors of the Agricultural Colleges of
the adjoining States; Mr. H. L. Blanchard, of Washington; the Rev. G. W. Taylor, Wellington; the members of the Board of Horticulture; the various Secretaries of Farmers'Institutes
and correspondents of the Department, who have given me such material aid in connection
with the work of the Department, and in producing the following report, which is submitted
for your approval.
I have the honour to be,
Your obedient servant,
Department of Agriculture,
Victoria, B. C, July 15th, 1901.
J. R. ANDERSON,
Deputy Minister of Agriculture. UPPER MAINLAND.
In which is included Grand Forks, Midway, Rock Creek, Sidley and Osoyoos.
Rainfall at Midway, 1900 10.35 inches.
Snowfall n ii 18.01 n
Lowest temperature, n - 22.0°
Highest „ ,, 100.5°
Mr. E. Spraggett, correspondent at Grand Forks, reports as follows:—
The Boundary District forms the extreme southern part of the District of Yale. In it
are four distinct mineral basins: that around Christina Lake on the cast, that adjacent to the
north fork of Kettle River, of Boundary Creek, and that of the main Kettle River, with
Rock Creek and other tributaries. The whole area covers a distance of about forty miles east
and west, and extends about fifty miles northwards. The southern boundary is the international frontier.
The topography of the district, while it offers a considerable diversity, is not very different
from that of all the great interior plateau of British Columbia. Whilst mountainous, its
highest points seldom exceed 5,000 feet, Kettle River being about 1,700 feet above sea level.
Most of the hills are forested to their very summits with a variety of coniferous trees. The
eastern, southern and western slopes are open, and afford a prolific growth of bunch-grass, and
along the valleys are many ranches which are especially adapted to diversified farming, with
the aid of irrigation. There have been numerous finds of ore in all these basins, but a great
deal of unexplored land is still open to the prospector. The ore bodies, famous for their
enormous width, carry values in gold and copper, and gold, copper and silver. To a large
extent—in some properties, perhaps entirely so—the gold will pay the mining and smelting
charges, leaving the copper partly or wholly net profit. There is, of course, some silver produced, but its position is secondary.
The climate is an ideal one, with no extremes of heat or cold. The snowfall in the valley
is light. Spring opens early. The summers are pleasant and not excessively hot, the temperature always declining at sundown. The Boundary is famous for its bracing atmosphere, and
has been described by Dr. Bryce in his "Climates of Canada" as the ideal national sanitarium.
The mining camps tributary to Grand Forks, and with which they are connected by good
roads and by rail (partially), are Central, Greenwood, Wellington, Hardy Mountain and Summit. This is exclusive of Brown's, Knight's, and other camps dotting the north fork of Kettle
River. Fifty miles north of Grand Forks is a mineral belt discovered a year ago. It already
boasts two camps—Franklin and Gloucester—where rich copper-gold ore is being taken out.
The supplies for these places are purchased in Grand Forks. The aggregate volume of
this trade is estimated at upwards of $500,000 annually, and is constantly increasing. And
yet the development of the hidden wealth in this rich territory is only in its infancy.
Grand Forks, the mining, smelting and commercial centre of the Boundary country, is
situated in a fertile and picturesque valley at the junction of the main Kettle River and the
north fork of Kettle River. It is an important station on the Columbia & Western railway
(C. P. R. extension). It is likely that Grand Forks will be connected by rail next summer
with Republic, the well-known mining camp on the Colville Reservation, in the State of
Washington. The distance between the two points is thirty-five miles.
Five or six years ago Grand Forks was a nameless ford; to-day it possesses a population
exceeding 2,000. No other point in Southern British Columbia offers superior advantages for
business men, real estate investments, or as a place of residence. The educational facilities
are exceptional, and nearly every religious denomination is represented by a church. 1 Ed. 7 Report on Agriculture. 11
Grand Forks is situated in the centre of an extensive valley, the extreme length of which
(in Canada) is not less than twenty miles, and the average width three and one-half miles.
This represents an area of over 45,000 acres of splendid loamy soil, admirably adapted for
general farming and fruit raising. Apples, peaches, pears, plums and prunes here attain perfection. The small fruits also thrive, strawberries hearing the first season. The apples grown
in the valley captured the highest awards at the Spokane Fruit Fair. An exhibit was sent to
the recent World's Fair at Paris, France. Vegetables also yield prolific crops. Small fruit
and vegetable farms derive large profits, as proximity to an increasing market gives the
producer an advantage over outside competitors who have to pay railway freights. The only
greenhouse in existence reports handsome returns. Of late there has been a tendency to cut
up farms into tracts of twenty or thirty acres each, to be devoted to fruit and vegetable
raising. The prices for cleared lands, near Grand Forks, average about $50 per acre. A good
crop can be raised the first season. One general farmer had a crop this past season that
yielded a total income of about $10,000. The major portion of the revenue was derived from
the sale of fruits. There is an unlimited demand for all these products in the Boundary
country, and this is especially so of the various mining camps.
Throughout the district there is a good supply of timber, such as pine, fir, cedar and
tamarack, and this stretches all the way up to the headwaters of the north fork, assuring an
unlimited supply for years to come. In this neighbourhood are superior clay beds for the
making of brick and tiles, besides lime and building stone quarries.
Grains.—Only oats are produced to any extent; ruling price, $30 per ton.
Roots.—Potatoes are raised in considerable quantities; ruling price, $20 per ton. Other
root crops and vegetables in limited quantities.
Grasses.—Timothy is grown for hay; fetches $25 per ton. Wild grasses grow luxuriantly
on the hills, and give excellent pasture for animals.
Fruits.—Fruits of all kinds produce fine crops of excellent quality, apples and prunes particularly.
Labourers.—Whites, $2.50 per day.
The following information is furnished by Mr. R. Sidley, correspondent, Sidley:—
This is an agricultural settlement situated on the mountain between Osoyoos Lake and
Rock Creek. The altitude (3,500 feet) is too high to be an ideal farming region, but the rich
soil and the high prices obtained for what is raised have made the settlers prosperous and
contented. The land is fairly level, being park-like in appearance, and a horse can be ridden
all through the timber. The open land has been all taken up, but there is a large quantity of
timbered Government lands still vacant. The air is very dry and bracing, and sickness is
unknown. Water is very pure and cold. The C. P. R. has a line to the coast surveyed
through it. There are no roads, except through the United States. There are no mosquitoes
or rattlesnakes. The market is the various mining camps around. There are two schools, a
customs house, and mails three times a week. Population, 300.
Wheat is not a success, owing to the high altitude; besides, as all grain raised here
commands from T1 to 3 cents a pound, it is far cheaper to buy flour.
Oats.—No particular variety grown. Average yield was 40 bushes per acre last year;
the summer was too cold for a good yield. No pests or diseases. There is hardly anything
else raised but oats. Average price was 2 cents per pound on the ranch.
Barley.—Beardless and common is produced; average yield, 30 bushels. No pests or
diseases. Only raised to fatten hogs, and the average price is 1J cents per pound.
Peas.—Garden varieties do well, but the weather is too dry and cold for the production
of field peas.
Potatoes.—Produce about 200 bushels to the acre. No diseases. One and a half cents
per pound was the ruling price.
Vegetables do well, but are only produced for home use.
Grasses and Clover.—Clover does not do well, the summer being too dry. Timothy
does well. I know of no grass that will supersede it, but for cattle, especially calves, I myself,
however, prefer Perennial (or English) rye grass. For wet land, red top is best. Timothy
produces 1 ton to the acre, and the price was $20 per ton on the ranch. A patch of five acres
that was manured yielded 12 tons. Austrian brome grass has succeeded well with one person
who tried it. Native grasses make the best of pasture, and are often cut for hay.
Fruit.—Apples and other large fruits are being experimented with; small fruits do well,
but owing to want of transportation facilities, are not produced except for home use. 12 Report on Agriculture. 1901
Dairying is very profitable. There is no cheese manufactured. Owing to the good
quality of the grasses, the quality of the butter is of the finest, and brings 30 to 35 cents per
pound. There is no creamery, there being not more than 150 cows available. Oats cut
green is the best summer food for dairy cows. The production of horned cattle is a successful
industry. Prices of milch cows run from $35 to $60, and beef cattle 8 cents per pound dressed.
Shorthorns are recommended.
Horses have not been profitable, owing to over-production. A Norman sire on cayuse
mares makes a good cross. Saddle ponies are worth from $15 to $50.
Sheep.—This is a suitable district for their production, but owing to wild animals (coyotes),
they cannot be produced except on a large scale, so that it would pay to herd them.
Swine raising is not prosecuted. Pigs, on foot, 7 to 8 cents. Bacon and hams, 14 to 16
cents by the pound. Berkshire is the most prolific and hardy. It is not advisable to let
swine eat down grain; it is most wasteful.
Poultry production is not prosecuted, although it is very profitable, as prices are high.
For general purposes, Plymouth Rock; for eggs, the Brown Leghorn. Eggs, 25 cents to 40
cents per dozen. Spring chickens, $5 to $9 a dozen. The reason it is not followed more is
that, without constant and assiduous attention, the poultry, if any number, will not do well;
their destructiveness and the prevalence of coyotes.
As regards co-operation, my opinion is that farmers, as a rule, work too hard to take time
to think. The trouble is that every one who has ever seen even a potato grow thinks he knows
how to farm, whereas it takes more knowledge than any other occupation.
Experiment Stations are the only true solution of agricultural progress. The different
conduct of the same seeds and plants under different climates and altitudes makes a large
number of small experimental stations necessary. The ultimate gain to the country would
be enormous. Agricultural education should form a part of the daily teaching in the public
The soil hereabouts is deficient in lime, but that could easily be supplied, as limestone
exists in the neighbourhood in large quantities ; also deposits of marl. Not much clearing
required, but some surface draining. I have found that putting two poles on each side of the
bottom of the drain and then covering with split shakes, and on these put the sod taken
out and then fill up, to be the best and cheapest. Irrigation is not required for grain, but is
very profitable for roots and grasses.
As regards pecuniary assistance, there is no better or safer way of lending money, but
much judgment must be used, as there are as many hair-brained farmers as are found in any
Of timber the following are plentiful and of merchantable size, viz.: Tamarack (larch—
Larix occidentals), bull pine (yellow pine—Pinus ponderosa), fir (Douglas fir—Pseudotsuga
Douglasii); also spruce, alder, cotton wood, birch, etc.
There are no noxious weeds, plants, or insects, except the small house-fly for about six
weeks in summer. Noxious animals are wild cats and wild horses.
The bounty on coyotes should be at least $2, as the hide is worth next to nothing.
Wolves and panthers do but little damage, as they stay in the unsettled parts. The wild
horse nuisance will soon settle itself. For instance, I have made a bargain with the Indians
for one hundred head at $3, intending to kill them for pig feed. (Coyote bounty since raised
to $2.—J. R. A.)
Forest fires hardly ever occur by intention; sometimes by accident, and mostly always by
There is some Government land for pre-emption, but it is mostly all timbered, with open
spaces between the belts of timber. There is a strip along the International Boundary Line
of about 6 miles east and west, and 4 to 10 miles, north, betweeen Osoyoos and here, all of
which is a beautiful summer range for cattle, and which will all be taken up before long. A
horse can be ridden all through this, and it is well adapted for dairying.
Farms are not for sale, as the settlers are all doing well.
Labour.—Whites, $1.50 per diem; mechanics, $3. Chinese, Japanese, and Indians
(mostly as stockmen), $1.
There is a preponderance of men who do not know that they know very little. Good
farming men are very scarce. o
< 1 Ed. 7 Report on Agriculture. 13
In which I include White Lake, Keremeos, Princeton, Granite Creek and Otter Creek.
White Lake is situated on an elevated plateau on the road between Keremeos and
Penticton. The country is open, with patches of brush along the water-courses and depressions, which are easily cleared. The land is of excellent quality, and yields all the usual
crops. Mr. Hiram Inglee, correspondent, has a fine ranch here.
Keremeos is a settlement in the valley of the Similkameen River, considerably below the
altitude of White Lake; probably about 1,000 feet above the level of the sea, White Lake
being possibly 500 or 600 feet higher. A good waggon road, leading to Osoyoos, the mines in
the Boundary country and Penticton, is the only means of communication at the present
Princeton is about 40 miles higher up the Similkameen River than Keremeos, in a northwesterly direction, at the confluence of Granite Creek, into which Otter Creek empties some
12 miles above. It is reached by a trail from Keremeos and Hope, and by a waggon road
Owing to lack of transportation facilities, many things that can be produced at Keremeos,
and in the valley of the Similkameen generally, to the greatest perfection and in large quantities, are now quite neglected.
Mr. E. Bullock-Webster, in his last report, says of this section:—
Very little grain grown in the valley; cheaper to buy flour than to raise wheat. Roots
and vegetables reach perfection on the rich, black lands of the valley; carrots, onions and
parsnips do well on the sandy benches. Red clover and timothy are the chief hay grasses.
Indian corn grows well, but is not used for forage. The valley is, above everything, a fruit
country, and will in time be the first in British Columbia. The benches are entirely free from
summer frosts. Apples, pears, plums, apricots, cherries, peaches, strawberries, and all small
fruits—with irrigation—are a grand crop and of good flavour. Grapes are not planted as they
should be; in fact, very little attention has been paid to fruit. At present the valley is
entirely devoted to cattle raising in a rough and ready way; but in the future, when better
methods are adopted, the valley should produce a large amount of butter. Portions of the
hillsides and mountains are very steep, but the tops are covered with bunch-grass and winter
grass; the bottom is rye grass, which stands up through the snow and makes good winter
Hiram Inglee, correspondent, White Lake, reports as follows :—
Cereals, except oats, are not produced to any extent. Roots are grown, but, except
potatoes, not largely.
Grasses.—Timothy chiefly grown; a good hay for horses and for nothing else. A few
acres of alfalfa, put in two years ago, has not done well; altitude too high; sanfoin did better.
Bromus inerinis can't be beaten; it is a fine grass. There is a wild grass here, an undoubted
Brome, very much like B. inermis, fairly plentiful.
Indian Corn grows well here, but does not ripen.
Apples are successful. There was a good yield of good apples in the two local orchards.
Green aphis present; spraying this spring with tobacco, soap and coal oil. Price, 3 cents per
Other Fruits.—Plums give splendid yields of good quality. Peaches also do well. Small
fruits of exceptional quality.
Horned Cattle.—A profitable industry, the ranges being exceptionally good.
Sheep would certainly pay well if the bounty on coyotes were high enough to keep
them down somewhat, and for that reason none are kept. Very suitable country, however,
except for winter feed, which would have to be provided in the neighbouring valleys.
Irrigation must be resorted to on the bench lands to ensure good crops, but there is not
much easily available water for the purpose.
Timber.—No valuable timber. Small Douglas fir and red pine. Chiefly bunch-grass
Poisonous Plants.—Poison ivy, larkspur and wild parsnip plentiful. I have attributed
the loss of cattle to poisoning.
Noxious Animals and Animal Pests.—Panthers are not so numerous as to make $7.50
too much, considering the harm they do. Wolves are only doing harm to deer at present. 14 Report on Agriculture. 1901
Coyotes should be at least $2.50. They have certainly increased since the bounty was reduced.
Wild horses are a pest, and should be replaced by tame sheep.
Labour.—Very little demand. Whites, chiefly miners, $3.50 per day; Chinese cooks
at $30 to $60 per month; Japanese, very few and not much use, though willing and civil;
Indians won't work if they can do without, and they all have land and cattle.
In which is included Okanagan Mission, Penticton, Trout Creek, Peachland and the
various ranches and settlements on the shores of that fine sheet of water, some ninety miles
Meteorological Reports for 1900 at Okanagan Mission.
Highest temperature, July 96°
Lowest ii February — 13.7°
Rainfall (incomplete), about 9.75 inches.
Snowfall ii ii 16.8 n
The general altitude ranges from 1,150 at the lake to 1,400 feet, or thereabouts, at the
highest points under cultivation.
Penticton is the end of navigation for the steamers plying on the lake. Trout Creek is
eight miles to the northward, on the west side of the lake. Peachland is a few miles higher
up the lake, and thence northward all the way up is admirably adapted for fruit growing.
The settlers are, somewhat scattered, owing to the abrupt nature of the shores, which do not
permit of ranching everywhere nor at a distance from the lake. Communication is maintained
by steamers which ply on the lake, there being no road on the western side, except between
Penticton and Trout Creek. On the east side, about half way up the lake, is Okanagan
Mission, of which Kelowna is the chief place and shipping point. An excellent waggon road
connects this place with Vernon, the practical terminus of the Shuswap and Okanagan Railroad ; this, with the steamer service on the lake, gives it access to all points. Okanagan
Mission Valley is one of the most fertile and beautiful in the Province, and is capable of producing crops and fruit belonging to the temperate, as well as many of those to the sub-tropical,
zones. Large quantities of produce are shipped out from this section to all parts of the
Province, a large proportion going to the Kootenay mining region. Tobacco, of an excellent
quality, is produced and manufactured into cigars at a factory in Kelowna.
Mr. A. H. Crichton, correspondent, reports as follows :—
Some wheat is produced, the price of which is from $18 to $25 per ton. Oats, of which
a large quantity is produced, fetch from $20 to $30 per ton. A good deal of fall rye is
grown successfully for hay, on the lands where water is not available; price about $20 per
ton. All root crops are successfully grown, especially potatoes.
Timothy hay is the principal crop grown for sale; averages about three tons to the acre
on irrigated land ; prices ruled up to $12.50 per ton. Clover, especially, grows well here, and
no other grasses seem to beat it, and it never plays out. Alsike and cocksfoot are good for
Early Indian corn does well. Giant Prolific grows to the height of 14 feet, but does not
Fruit is successfully grown. Apples yield well and fetch about 75c. per box. Plums and
cherries are good. Peaches and apricots do well if flowers escape early frost.
Dairying.—A few private dairies are successful with local trade, but lack of facilities
for shipping any distance prevents co-operative creameries.
Soils.—Gypsum is particularly wanted for alkali soils, but freight rates prohibit its use.
I believe it can be got in the East for about $4 per ton, but rates are about $25 per ton.
[Why not use lime ?—J. R. A.]
Irrigation is necessary for the successful production of crops, and it is carried on to a
Lots of water for present purposes, but more land would be used if a long distance of
ditch could be made. 1 Ed 7. Report on Agriculture. 15
Cut-worms were worst about May 24. Got rid of by leaving land bare for two weeks and
scattering poisoned bran broadcast. One tobacco grower spent $50 in getting the paper bands
and placing round plants, as advised in Government reports, but the cut-worms crawled into them.
All Government land that is any good is pre-empted; nothing but wild range land left.
Improved farms sell for from $20 to $100 and $200 per acre.
Mr. W. Smythe Parker, correspondent, Penticton, makes the following report:—
Penticton, at the outlet of the Okanagan Lake, is the terminus of the roads leading from
the Similkameen, Osoyoos, Kettle River, and all the numerous mining camps in the vicinity
of those places. Nickel Plate Camp and Princeton will, ere long, prove to possess immense
mineral wealth, and, with the present opening up of waggon roads and railways, will have
good markets close at hand for all farming products. One important matter is at once needed,
and that is: that these districts should be at once surveyed and new maps printed, so that
settlers can take up the large tracts of land suitable for mixed farming. Water can be put
upon these lands for irrigation purposes, and the Provincial Government ought to do it, charging a few cents per acre, and in thoroughly surveying these districts the one expense can be
easily reduced and, eventually, profitable returns secured for the Provincial Government's
outlay. The soils within these districts are extremely rich where water can be obtained, and
grow almost anything. It is also the end of navigation ; climate unsurpassed ; scenery grand ;
and is also a health resort. There is abundance of fish and game. Fruit growing will surpass
anything in British Columbia if attention is bestowed upon it. Stock raising is at present the
principal industry, and it is a pleasure to look at those large herds of cattle, so fat and well
bred for beef purposes. The same rewards await all industrious and enterprising settlers for
mixed farming, etc. Here, for younger settlers, the future is a grand and sure one for profitable returns of capital, with energy, enterprise and labour.
I should consider that there are upwards of 200 people engaged altogether in ranching,
fruit growing and mixed farming. Many came in upon the Nickel Plate Road construction
last year, and are still coming in.
Wheat can be well grown in these districts, and as soon as the lands are properly surveyed
and well opened up, numerous settlers will come in. Milling will be the next important consideration, and then there will be more profitable returns for each settler, and other industries
will follow. Ruling price, $25 to $30 per ton. A considerable quantity of oats is grown for
feed; yield, 30 to 40 bushels per acre. Other cereals are grown in small quantities, and all
Grasses and clovers come to perfection, and, with water, yield double crops.
Indian Corn succeeds well.
Apples.—Both early summer fruit and dessert, of the choicest varieties, grown successfully, and winter ones also. Price, 3c. to 5c. per pound; and generally free, to a certain
extent, with care, from diseases and pests. All other fruits succeed well, particularly peaches.
Horned Cattle and Sheep.—No doubt small bands of sheep will prove a success when
more settlers get their pre-emptions fenced in, and more suitable feed growing. The ranges
are getting yearly of less value. The native grasses are fed out, and it needs a better state of
farming to renew them; otherwise the ranch stock will yearly suffer and less profit attend it,
with double the expense.
Agricultural Education.—The Province needs a public school for the purpose of
thoroughly teaching the young how to work. To make a success of farming, young men must
be trained for the career, the same as for any other business.
Report of Alex. McLennan, correspondent, west side Okanagan Lake, opposite Kelowna :
This section of the country is badly broken up. What agricultural land there is of any
account is held by Indians. There are two reserves within three miles of each other, with
about 20 Indians, all told, on both of them. They cultivate altogether about 20 acres, and
this part of the district will never amount to much till those reserves are opened up for settlement. There are, I suppose, between 200 and 300 acres under cultivation by whites, mostly
in small patches. Nearly any part of it is well adapted for fruit or grain and vegetables.
There are 15 pre-emptions taken up, and the population, all told, big and small, 73 white.
Cereals.—Wheat is not grown for milling purposes ; some oats are grown, but not to any
extent. 16 Report on Agriculture. 1901
Potatoes.—All kinds of popatoes are grown very successfully. Potatoes suffered last
season from army worm and grasshoppers, and the yield was not up to the average. The
yield would be about 5 tons to the acre. Varieties which appear to give the best satisfaction
are: Early Rose, Peerless, Satisfaction, and Carman Nos. 1 and 3. Price, about $8 per ton;
number of acres under potatoes, about 50.
Grasses and Clovers.—The principal grasses are timothy and red clover. Timothy
would go from one and one-half to two tons per acre; clover would about double that, or from
three to four tons per acre. Price in the fall was $10 per ton, delivered at C. P. R. wharf.
Baled timothy sells here better here than any other kind of hay, but for stock I would rather
have any kind of clover hay. Number of acres under hay would be about 100.
Indian Corn.—I have grown Angel of Midnight and Yellow Dent successfully.
Fruits.—I don't know of any variety of apples that don't grow well here. I have tried
fourteen different varieties, and all of them have done well. The yield in 1900 was extra
good; the crop ripened at least two weeks earlier than usual. I would give 500 trees as an
approximate estimate. The worst pest is green aphis. The remedies are Bordeaux mixture
in winter, quassia chips and whale oil soap in summer. Ruling price was about $1.50 per
Principally Bartlett pears are produced, and succeed well.
Plums and prunes do well. There are not a great many of them planted. Lombard,
Green Gage and Yellow Egg all do well.
Small fruits do well. Currants, gooseberries, strawberries and raspberries are grown in
abundance, with very labour. Prices, currants 2 cents per pound; raspberries, from 10 to 12
cents; and strawberries from 10 to 15 cents.
Horses.—The supply of horses here has been greater than the demand for some time, and
farmers have quit raising them, because they could not sell them at any price; consequently,
horses are getting scarce, and after a while I believe there will be a good demand for them.
Sheep.—This would be a fine sheep country if it were not for coyotes ; but for that reason
there are no sheep.
Co-operation is not thought of, but is a crying necessity.
Experimental stations, in my opinion, are very useful, and the only fault I find is that
there are not enough of them. As the climate and soil is so much different in each section of
British Colunbia, the experimental station is only useful in its own particular locality.
Farmers' Institutes.—If the farmers would take the interest in them that they should,
I think they would be a great help to them.
Irrigation is required here everywhere, and land is of no use without it. There is quite a
lot of land that could be cultivated if water could be got on to it. Water could be got too,
but the cost would be too great for any one man to undertake it. The ordinary cost of an
irrigating ditch would be about $50 per mile.
Pecuniary Assistance.—I think the proper thing for the Government to do would be to
assist farmers who are taking up new land, and have nothing to put into it but their labour.
It would not only help the farmer, but the Government as well, and the country. I don't see
any difficulty in finding a scheme that would protect the Government. They could lend money
on the same principal as other loan companies, except that the Government lend with the
object of helping, instead of getting everything the settler has got.
Timber.—The principal timber trees in this section are pine and fir, with cottonwood
growing on low land. Timber is very easily got, and useful for lumber.
Noxious Animals and Animal Pests.—I consider coyotes the worst pest that we have
of the animal kind, and they are increasing very fast. I think the bounty on them should be
not less than $2.50, for if they are not looked after soon they will get so numerous that it will
give lots of trouble to get rid of them.
Cut-worms were very bad last spring. Crops most affected here were cabbage and tomatoes. The cut-worms appear as soon as the ground gets warm.
Forest Fires.—My opinion about forest fires is that nearly all of them are started from
Land.—There is Government land to be had here, dry bench land. I don't know of any
improved land for sale.
Labour.—Whites, plenty; wages from $20 to $40 per month. Chinese, plenty; wages
from $15 to $25. Japanese, not many yet. Indians, plenty; wages about the same as
Chinese. 1 Ed. 7 Report on Agriculture. 17
Under this I include the Commonage, White and Creighton Valleys, Mabel and Sugar
Lakes, Priest Valley and Spallumcheen. This section may fairly be called the garden of the
Upper Country, embracing as it does such a large and varied area of territory adapted to all
conditions of husbandry and to the production of anything that can be expected to be grown
in these latitudes. A branch line of the Canadian Pacific Railway runs through the district,
connecting it with the main line at Sicamous. The principal town is Vernon, beautifully
situated at the head of Okanagan Lake, and whence good waggon roads radiate to all parts of
the district. Steamers connect it also with all points on the lake. Armstrong and Enderby
are two other towns on the line of railway north of Vernon—fourteen and twenty-three miles,
respectively. Each of these places have flour and saw mills, the flour mill at Armstrong being
a co-operative concern owned by the people of the district, and is supplied with good up-to-date
machinery. That of Enderby has the largest capacity and is provided with all the latest improvements. About five miles from Vernon, on the White Valley road, is the Coldstream
Ranch, owned by Lord Aberdeen. It is well situated for general farming, with good soil and
an abundant supply of water for irrigation purposes. Under the able superintendence of Mr.
Ricardo, this farm has been greatly improved and forms a good object lesson. Unquestionably the best apples in the Province are produced in this section of the country, including all
points on the lake. Hops are also produced in large quantities by irrigation. The road in
this direction connects with Mabel and Sugar Lakes, the headwaters of the Spallumcheen
River, also with Creighton Valley, and a cattle trail with Fire Valley and Killarney on the
Lower Arrow Lake. Two good waggon roads lead from Vernon to Armstrong and Enderby,
and another from the latter place to Salmon Arm, on the main line of the Canadian Pacific
Railway. The Spallumcheen River flows past Enderby into the Shuswap Lake at Sicamous,
and is navigable for stern-wheel steamers. A great portion of the country is open, some of it
lightly wooded, and some of it rather heavily wooded for this part of the country; the principal
timber trees being Douglas fir and larch on the higher parts and yellow pine (Pinus ponderosa)
on the lower levels, intermixed in all cases with a good deal of birch and poplar. The land is
all highly fertile, requiring irrigation in that part in the vicinity of Vernon. The necessity
for irrigation for the successful production of crops is, however, not as general as was formerly
believed—this belief having been somewhat dispelled by the operations of the settlers who
took up land on what is known as the Commonage, an extensive tract lying to the south of
Vernon, between Okanagan and Long Lakes, and which, in view of the absence of water for
irrigation purposes, was not considered worth taking up by the early settlers. By judicious
farming and putting in early fall crops, it has been found that a great deal of the land can be
successfully utilised for the production of cereals and roots. It is true that a very dry season,
such as is sometimes experienced, may prove disastrous, and such a contingency is freely predicted
by some of the early settlers, but the fact remains that good crops have been produced on these
lands, those of 1900 being the best in the district. In the Spallumcheen Valley and the
Salmon River Valley east, that is, in the vicinity of Armstrong and Enderby, irrigation is not
necessary, the precipitation being sufficient. The lands lying contiguous to the Spallumcheen
River, all the way to Mara, a station on the line of railway north of Enderby, are eminently
well suited for dairying.
Meteorological Reports por 1900 at Enderby.
Highest temperature, July 92°
Lowest H (incomplete), February -15°
Rainfall (incomplete), about 19 inches.
Snowfall ii probably over 50 ii
At Coldstream (Vernon).
Highest temperature, July 96°
Lowest ii (incomplete), November - 13°
Rainfall (incomplete), about 11 inches.
Snowfall not given.
The general altitude runs from about 1,150, the lake level, to perhaps 1,500 at the highest
points under cultivation. 18 Report on Agriculture. 1901
Mr. Donald Graham, correspondent, Armstrong, sends the following report:—
The Spallumcheen Valley is one of the larger offshoots of the Okanagan. It extends practically from the head of Okanagan Lake, in the south, to the Mara and Shuswap Lakes to the
north, a distance of over forty miles, and averaging through its entire length between three
and four miles in width. To the eastward the agricultural lands run right up to the foot of a
high and somewhat rugged mountain, being only broken midway, near Enderby, by the
entrance into the valley of the Spallumcheen River, from which the valley takes its name. To
the westward, however, the country is of a more rolling nature, a large portion of the land
being available for agricultural purposes.
There is little doubt that at one time the flow of water was from the Okanagan into the
Spallumcheen; now, however, the waters divide at Deep Creek, the larger portion flowing-
southward into Okanagan Lake, thence into the Columbia River; the balance flowing northward
into the Spallumcheen, thence into the Fraser River. The whole valley is extremely fertile,
the soil being a clay loam, ranging from somewhat light to clays of the heaviest kind, most of
it, however, with several inches of black loam on the surface. The rolling and higher land to
the westward is mostly a sandy loam, the chief area of which is the Salmon River Valley and
land in the immediate vicinity. This land is very productive, and although possibly not
averaging as high in wheat returns, for vegetables and small, fruits, particularly, it is better
adapted than the heavier lands adjoining.
Until now, wheat production has been the chief dependence of the farmers, the returns
being very high, averaging nearly thirty bushels per acre. This has always been easily disposed of, there being three flour mills in the Okanagan, one each at Enderby, Vernon and
Armstrong, the price for wheat being about 60 cents per bushel. The flour manufactured has
deservedly a high reputation in British Columbia, the wheat raised being chiefly Red Fife and
Fall Fife, from which the best flours are made. With the development of the Kootenay
mines, however, conditions are changing very fast; potatoes, hay and vegetables of all descriptions are being produced in ever-increasing quantities, and bid fair, in a very short time, to
force wheat production into a secondary position. Dairying and fruit raising are also coming
to the front, so that mixed farming is likely soon to supplant the straight wheat industry. Of
fruit, apples, plums, prunes and pears and all small fruits yield abundantly and of the best
quality. On Okanagan Lake, peaches, apricots, cherries and grapes do well, possibly on account
of the warmer subsoil, although it must also be said that the climatic conditions vary in the
most unaccountable manner within a very few miles, a change from sleigh to waggon not being
uncommon in a twelve or fifteen-mile winter journey. The climate generally may be described
as a very fine one, although we sometimes have exceptionally hot days in summer and
extremely cold ones in winter. The winter temperature for four months would not, however,
average over ten degrees of frost, with from a foot to a foot and one-half of snow. Going
southward to the Okanagan Lake and along its shores, both frost and snow decrease, until the
latter becomes a very uncertain quantity on the lower levels.
About 110 square miles of the Spallumcheen Valley has been formed into a municipality,
under the valley name. The Council, since its formation, has devoted its energies to the
opening up of the district; as a consequence, the farmers are very well supplied with roads.
Hardly a farm in the municipality but is somewhere touched by the road system. The
Shuswap and Okanagan Railway also passes through the centre of the valley, having six
stations along its length of 50 miles, at the northern end of which it intersects with the
C. P. Railway. The station at Armstrong is also the municipal centre, and is a busy and
thriving little place, with its flour and saw-mills, and constant stream of farm waggons passing-
back and forth. From an educational point of view, the section is also well served, there
being six school-houses situated in convenient localities throughout the municipality, all free
and maintained by the Provincial Government, as all British Columbia schools are. The
whole section is extremely healthy, there being very little sickness, excepting such as has been
brought in by those seeking a health resort. Stock of all kinds is also very free from disease;
in fact, we are remarkably free from diseases and pests in both the animal and vegetable
kingdoms. The cost of living, machinery, wages, transportation, etc., is high. Were it not
for that, the position of the farmers would be an ideal one. However, those conditions are
slowly and gradually changing.
There is very little Government land of any value to be obtained throughout the Okanagan now, the lands being all settled upon and improved to a greater or less degree. Under
the British Columbia land laws, 320 acres of land was allowed to be taken up by each indi- 1 Ed. 7 Report on Agriculture. 19
vidual—a great deal more timber land than any ordinary individual could clear. As a consequence, there is plenty of unimproved land, which can still be bought at from $3 to $10 per
acre. Improved lands are held at from $40 to as high as $100 per acre, according to quality
Game in past years has been very plentiful, and is still fairly so; grouse and prairie
chicken, geese and ducks on the lakes and meadows. Deer still fairly plentiful, although
requiring more hunting to obtain than formerly. In fact, it may be called a hunter's
paradise, as a ten days' outing in the mountains can bring one in contact with caribou, mountain goat, mountain sheep, grizzly, black bear and panther, and wolves also. The latter four,
however, are wary and very hard to get at.
Wheat.—Of spring and fall wheat combined, possibly about 5,000 tons; about 6,000
acres under wheat. Production of wheat not very profitable; simply a good living in it; no
one, I think, making money, and conditions not quite as favourable is in past years, farmers
generally paying more attention to mixed farming. Fattening of stock should he a profitable
line here. At present, market somewhat limited; could be easily overdone. No bad effects
from frost or weather. Some smut and a little rust in 1900. Price of wheat, about 60 cents
per bushel. Jones' Fall Fife; of spring wheat, Red Fife and Pringle's Grandee. There was
a light crop in 1900, not over 20 bushels for average.
Oats.—White Sovereign, Banner, Welcome and Danish. Average, about 1,000 pounds
per acre. Crops affected by drought; very dry season. About 1,500 acres under oats. Price,
$20 to $25 per ton.
Other Cereals.—Peas and beans not grown in quantity.
Root Crops and Vegetables.—The acreage under these crops is increasing greatly, and
will receive a good deal of attention in the future. Potatoes fetch about $10 per ton.
Grasses and Clovers.—Timothy principally; yield, from one to two tons; used chiefly
for horse feed. More attention is being paid to clover lately, but it is apparently not as
generally successful as timothy.
Indian Corn.—No information in favour. It is cultivated sometimes successfully, often
the reverse; too easily affected by frost.
Apples.—Numberless varieties grown successfully; heavy yield in 1900; no bad effect
from weather; about 10,000 trees; no diseases; pests, aphis; sprayed with quassia chips and
whale oil soap. Ruling prices, $1 per box.
Other Fruits.—Pears and plums do well, but not cherries. Small fruits do well, especially on the higher lands.
Horned Cattle.—The production is profitable, and the operation of the "Cattle Ranges
Act" is good.
Horses.—There has been an over-production of horses in the past. The last year or two
the horse trade has been improving somewhat; prices higher, but only local demand.
Hogs.—Swine production is one of our chief industries. Price, 5|- cents per pound on foot,
during past season. Berkshire, Poland China and Tamworth. Grain too expensive to feed
all the year round; must have cheap summer feed, pasture of some kind, rape or clover.
Cold Storage.—Should first know more of the meat requirements of British Columbia.
We are in absolute ignorance as to the quantity of stock used in British Columbia, where it
comes from, or whether we can supply the market or not. If not, how much meat is imported,
and where from. We should know all this first.
Experimental Stations should be an advantage, and results ought to justify expenditure,
if done thoroughly. Our soils are already on the down grade. Successful experiments in
ploughing in green crops, and other ways, should be an immense advantage.
Soils.—Humus lacking. This is where experimental work should do good. How to, in
the best and quickest way, supply humus, clover being a very uncertain quantity, hard to grow.
Labourers are to be had at $30 per month.
Report of F. Appleton, correspondent, Enderby:—
Grain.—Wheat is largely grown and is profitable; price is about 60c. per bushel. Last
season 66c. was paid by the Enderby Mill. Oats are grown, the average price being $20 per
ton. Other grains not much grown.
Roots and Vegetables are not grown in large quantities, but do excellently.
Grasses and Clovers.—Timothy for hay; red and white clover for pasture. About
3,000 lt)s. per acre for timothy; about 4,000 Bis. per acre for clover. Timothy is no use except 20 Report on Agriculture. 1901
for hay. Mixed grasses and clover do well and make better hay and pasture for dairy stock.
Price for baled timothy was $12 per ton.
Austrian brome grass has not done as well as anticipated; makes good pasture, is first to
start growing in spring and last to stop in fall. Stock like it.
Bunch-grass is the only wild grass that stock fatten on well.
Indian Corn has only been experimented with, but does well.
Fruit.—Apples, pears and plums all do well; orchards young. Cherries do not succeed
so well. Small fruits produce abundantly.
Private dairying is considered profitable, but a creamery would give a great impetus to
this branch of farming.
Summer Feed for Dairy Cattle.—Corn sown first week in June; peas and oats in
rotation also assist in keeping up supply. Have no difficulty if people take a little trouble.
Cattle.—Cattle do well here, but bulls should be kept shut up and not allowed to range.
Milch cows bring from $45 to $60 each; beef cattle, about 5c. per pound. For beef, Durham
and Ayrshire, and for milk, Jersey crossed with these two breeds.
Sheep.—Sheep are only kept on a very limited scale. Coyotes are troublesome. Want
of open range and winters too long for profit. Prices 5c. per It)., live weight; 7c. for wool.
Horses.—Horses are fetching a fair price. It pays to breed heavy horses here, such as
Clydes or Shires. Good, general-purpose horses also sell well.
Hogs.—Swine production is not general; a few large droves are kept. Price, 5|-c, live
weight. Hogs grazing on white clover grow fast with a very small amount of feed, and finish
off on stubble.
Poultry'.—Poultry production pays well, although the long winter's confinement is very
much against poultry in this district. Four to five months' snow does not allow of the birds
getting about. Eggs average 25c. per dozen; fowls, 10 to 12|c. per. R).
Soils.—Humus is the most lacking in the soil in this district; to remedy this, green crops
should be turned in.
Land.—Some Government lands up Mabel Lake Valley. Farms can be bought for from
$5 per acre up to $40.
Labour.—Whites, $25 to $30 per month and board; Chinese, only cooks employed;
Indians, during harvest, get from $1.25 to $1.50 per day.
In which is included Craigellachie, Sicamous, Salmon Arm, Notch Hill and Tappen Siding,
comprising all that portion of the country between Craigellachie and Shuswap, on the main
line of the Canadian Pacific Railroad. This section is peculiar, in that it is all wooded more
or less heavily, and that the precipitation is ample for agricultural purposes.
Craigellachie is in the valley of Eagle River, which flows into the Shuswap Lake at
Sicamous, and is on the main line of the Canadian Pacific Railway. It is on the foot-hills of
the Gold Range, sixteen miles to the east of Sicamous. The valley is fairly wide, but heavily
timbered. Altitude, 1,223 feet.
At Griffin Lake, near Craigellachie, the meteorological record for 1900 was as follows;—
Rainfall 52.32 inches.
Snowfall 133 .0
Highest temperature (July) 110°
Lowest ii (February) — 18°
Sicamous is situated at the head of the Shuswap Lake, where the Shuswap and Okanagan
Railway joins the main line, sixteen miles west of Craigellachie. There is some farming done
in a small way about Craigellachie, but none at Sicamous, although there is bottom land at
the latter place which could be utilised if cleared.
Salmon Arm is a settlement in the Valley of the Salmon River where it debouches into
the Salmon Arm of Shuswap Lake, nineteen miles to the north-west of Sicamous. The C. P.
R. runs through the settlement and a waggon road connects it with Spallumcheen. All kinds
of grain, except corn, are produced. Wheat growing is profitable for home use, but not otherwise. Timothy and red clover mixed give the best result for fodder and seem well adapted to -T^iW,
(X 1 Ed. 7 Report on Agriculture. 21
the place and climate. The district is especially adapted for the production of fruits and for
dairying, and, on account of its favourable shipping facilities both east and west, large quanti-
tities of small fruits, vegetables and milk are sent to the markets along the line. The altitude
at the station, which is nearly at the level of the lake, is 1,152 feet, the rise up the valley
being inconsiderable ; the mountains, however, rise to a considerable elevation on either side.
Besides the railroad, this part of the country has water communication via the lake and
Thompson River with all points as far as Savona in one direction, and up the Spallumcheen
River, as far as Enderby, in the other.
Tappen Siding is seven miles west of Salmon Arm, and at about the same altitude. Notch
Hill is ten miles further on, at an altitude of 1,687 feet, it being on the height of land between
Tappen Siding and Shuswap. This district is quite thickly wooded.
Report of Mr. W. F. Smith, correspondent, Tappen Siding :—
Grain.—Only oats and peas grown in any quantity and cut green for hay.
Root Crops.—Potatoes do well; yield, about 6 tons per acre; ruling price in 1900, $10
to $12 per ton. Others principally for home use in feeding stock.
Hay and Grasses.—Timothy, Alsike and Red clover are the principal grasses grown for
hay, timothy being the most popular. Ruling price, $12 per ton.
Indian Corn can be grown for ensilage. I planted | acre last year (as a test) on the 1st
of June. When the frost came the corn was just shaped on the cob. The yield was 40 tons
of green fodder per acre. The variety planted was Giant Prolific Ensilage. Lost most of it
on account of having no silo.
Not many apple trees in this district.
Labour.—Whites, $30 per month ; Chinese, $20 ; Indians, $20.
Thompson River Valley,
Including Shuswap, Ducks, Grand Prairie, Kamloops, Campbell Creek, Cherry Creek,
North Thompson and Tranquille.
Shuswap is westward from Notch Hill fifteen miles, and is lower by 541 feet, with a drier
climate and an open country. Communication east and west by rail and water.
At Kamloops the rainfall for 1900 was 10.18 inches; snowfall, 6.6 inches; lowest temperature (February), - 10.1°; highest (July), 93.4°.
The following is the report of Mr. J. P. Shaw, correspondent, Shuswap :—
Wheat has not been grown in large quantities in the past; favourable for milling wheat.
(A large acreage, I understand, is now being put in.—J. R. A.) Price from $20 to $25 per
Other Grains.—Considerable quantity of oats produced. Peas not successful.
Root Crops.—Potatoes are grown in considerable quantities, but the yield was much
reduced through the ravages of cut-worms in 1900. Price from $10 to $15 per ton.
Hay and Grasses.—Timothy, Red and Alsike clover are grown. Crop averaged 2 or 2|
tons per acre. Sold in stack at $10 per ton. For dairying, Timothy is not considered as good
Indian Corn.—Very little grown, and does not thrive so well as in parts of Ontario,
owing, I think, to cold nights and late spring and earl)' autumn frosts. Grown with partial
success in well-protected spots.
Apples.—All common varieties, such as Transparent, Wealthy, Duchess, Fameuse, Alexander, Rhode Island Greening, Russet, Ben Davis, etc., grow to perfection; yield last year,
fair; weather, favourable. The oyster-shell bark louse is quite bad ; spraying with lime, salt
and sulphur, or bluestone and lye. Price last fall was about 3c. per pound.
Other Fruits.—Pears do well; price, 5c. per pound. Plums and prunes also, and small
Horned Cattle.—Beef steers are worth $40 and cows $30; profitable and large industry.
Horses.—Horses here are poor property, as quality is not such as to be in demand. If
the horses here could be disposed of and replaced by cattle, or even a better class of horses, it would undoubtedly be advantageous to owners, and would save the ranges. Horses weighing
from 1,100 to 1,400 pounds would answer all purposes. Horses here do not fetch very much,
as they are too small and scrubby.
Sheep.—Sheep raising is very little engaged in, though small bands are profitable. All
flocks here are grades. I think Southdowns or Cotswolds the best breeds. Sheep sell from
$5 to $8 dressed; wool, 8 to 12 cents. Coyotes are very destructive, which is the greatest
hindrance to the industry. Climate and other conditions are very favourable.
Hogs.—Very few hogs are raised. Hogs on foot are worth 5c. per pound; bacon retails
at from 14c. to 16c, and hams at 20c. per pound.
Poultry.—Poultry raising is not entered into, although profitable. Price of fowls, $6,
and eggs average 25c. per dozen.
Experimental Stations.—I think it better for the Province to handle this, as, if done
by the Dominion, what applies in one part does not in another. I think if we had Experimental
Stations situated, one at the coast, one near • Kamloops, and one in Okanagan, it would be
Agricultural Education.—I am opposed to agriculture being taught in public schools
for the following reasons, viz.: —
1. Many teachers were never on a farm, and are, therefore, not qualified to teach it.
2. In rural districts, the young can learn more by practical experience on a farm than by
3. The time of many pupils' school life is limited, and could be used to better advantage
in studying other subjects.
4. In city schools, and in many instances in rural schools, the pupils are not at all
interested in the subject, and would never put the learning (if they got any) to any practical
Irrigation is necessary for the successful production of crops, and is consequently carried
on to a large extent, by means of ditches, by natural gravitation, the soil being favourable for
the purpose, and there being a sufficiency of water for present needs.
Pests.—Cut-worms appeared first in May, destroying the first sowing of vegetables, but
not to any serious extent. The large ones appeared about Aug. 10th, and, in places, totally
stripped potato vines and attacked apple trees, destroying considerable fruit, and disappearing
about Sept. 1st. Cannot give you any times as to egg-laying, etc.
Noxious Animals.—Skunks and coyotes and hawks. Coyotes are apparently on the
increase. The present bounty, viz., $2, is not large enough to induce anyone to make a
business of destroying them. I would favour raising the bounty to $3, or even more. Wolves
are seldom, if ever, seen in this section, except by hunters, and are out of settled parts.
Labour.—Whites, $1.25 to $1.50 per day, or $30 to $35 per month, with board ; Chinese,
$15 to $25 per month, with board ; Japanese, $15 to $20 per month, with board; Indians, $1
to $1.25 per day. Indians plentiful; Japanese and Chinese not resident, and, if wanted, have
to be procured from the cities.
Ducks and Grand Prairie, the former being on the Thompson River and the main line of
the Canadian Pacific Railway, sixteen miles below Shuswap, and the latter about fourteen
miles to the south-east, on the waggon road to Spallumcheen. The altitude of Ducks is 1,148
feet, with a considerable rise towards Grand Prairie.
Communication.—The Canadian Pacific Railway passes through Ducks, and a good
waggon road leads from Kamloops, seventeen miles distant, past Ducks to Grand Prairie and
Soil, Water and Timber.—The soil is generally a light, sandy loam near the river, and
of a heavier nature towards Grand Prairie ; productive when water is available, but which is
not always the case, especially near the river. Timber is fairly abundant on the hillsides.
Crops and Fruit.—Cereals and root crops produce well, but are raised principally for
feeding to stock. Fruit will no doubt do well in parts, but it has not as yet been extensively
Live Stock.—Many cattle and horses are produced, the former almost entirely for
beef, little or no dairying being done. Sheep raising is not prosecuted to any extent. Swine
are produced in greater quantities than probably in any other part of the Province, and are
found to be very profitable. An excellent country for poultry, but the industry is quite
neglected. 1 Ed. 7 Report on Agriculture. 23
Report of Mr. V. D. Curry, correspondent, Campbell Creek :—
Wheat.—Red Fife, Campbell's White Chaff, Ladoga and Club are grown, but not much
is produced ; principally for chicken feed at home and for the local market. I believe it is more
profitable to feed grain on the farm and buy the flour. Frosts don't bother, except on the
higher levels. No diseases. Average production, 30 bushels per acre.
Oats.—Oats are largely grown; yield, 40 bushels per acre. Other grains are grown in
small quantities, principally for use in feeding stock.
Roots.— Root crops are all grown to great perfection, but the yield was much reduced
last year through the depredations of cut-worms.
Hay and Grasses.—Timothy, Red Top, Cocksfoot, Red and Alsike clover, Alfalfa and
Sanfoin are grown, and produce about 1 ton of hay per acre ; price, about $12 per ton. I
consider many other grasses, such as clover, Sanfoin, Alfalfa and Cocksfoot, much better from
a feed point of view.
Corn.—Indian Corn can be successfully grown in some parts of this district. I believe
it would make a first-class soiling plant, providing silos were introduced. Have grown it
successfully myself, and also many others.
Apples.—All hardy varieties very good. Not affected by weather, except hail in some
sections. Green aphis and bark lice are troublesome. Principal remedy, tobacco for aphis,
lye for bark lice. Ruling price, 2J cents per pound.
Other Fruits.—Pears, plums and cherries attain great perfection in all parts of the district, and peaches and apricots in some parts. Small fruits very productive, and prices good.
Dairying.—Private dairying- is very profitable in this country, and I am suprised that
more people are not interested in it. Co-operative creameries could not be worked in this
district; distances are too great. Unless we get a better class of stock, it will not pay to
specially breed stock for dairying here in the winter. I believe farmers will make more by
liberally feeding stock cattle, instead of the starvation plan that is practised by many in this
Clover.—I believe clover as a summer soiling crop is invaluable in the interior; it can be
Horned Cattle.—The production of horned cattle is a successful industry. Prices are
3| and 4 cents on foot for beef; good milch cows $40 and $50 per head of ordinary stock.
Shorthorn and Hereford for beef; milking strain of Shorthorn for dairy, as they also make
Sheep.—Sheep are hard on the ranges in the dry belt, and in time would utterly ruin
them. The district is, however, suitable for sheep, and the industry is carried on to some
extent with profit. The breeds favoured are Leicesters and Cots wolds. Prices range from 12
cents to 15 cents per pound. Coyotes are a nuisance.
Horses.—Horses have been profitable. A breed like the Cleveland Bay I consider best.
Horses weighing 1,500 pounds and upwards fetch $100 and upwards.
Hogs.—Swine production is prosecuted systematically. Pigs on foot sell for 6 cents to 7
cents; bacon, 15 cents; hams, 18 cents, and lard 15 cents per pound. Berkshires and Tam-
worths are recommended. Hogs can be most cheaply produced on clover, and fattened on peas
in the straw in the fall.
Poultry.—Poultry raising is very remunerative, but not taken up systematically. Leghorns are recommended for eggs, and Plymouth Rocks for table. Prices, 30 cents per doz.
for eggs; $4 per doz. for cockerells. Many people make an easy living in cattle raising, and
won't take the trouble to attend to the details necessary to success in poultry.
Diseases.—Lump-jaw is prevalent amongst cattle, and distemper amongst horses. There
should be range riders to report on diseases.
Co-operation.—We are succeeding better now. The Farmers' Institute is doing good work
in regard to transportation. I think the Provincial Government ought to establish small
Experimental Stations in the interior, where irrigation is in vogue. There is a great lack of
knowledge in regard to proper irrigation, and the crops best adapted to it.
Soils.—Manure is required more than anything else. Clover, rye, millet, etc., ploughed
under will certainly overcome this.
Irrigation is necessary, and is carried on to a considerable extent. The supply of water
could be materially increased by conserving it, and many thousands of acres brought into cultivation. The cost of ordinary irrigation ditches is about $500 per mile. In isolated cases
water has been pumped by steam, etc.; don't think it was remunerative. Government should 24 Report on Agriculture. 1901
certainly take hold of the irrigation question and store water for the farmers, thereby making
available for agriculture thousands of acres of now barren land.
Poisonous Plants.—The only poisonous plant coming under my notice is the water
hemlock or wild parsnip, which is very deadly. No remedy has been proven here yet.
Forest Fires.—Can't suggest any plan for the prevention of forest fires. My opinion is
that the commonest cause of fires in this district is Indians and others camping out in the
timber and neglecting the fire. I believe carelessness has a great deal to do with it.
Labour.—Whites, $30 and $40 per month ; Chinese, $20 to $30; Japanese, $15 to $25 ;
Indians, $30 to $35.
Report of Mr. J. F. Smith, correspondent for North Thompson and Louis Creek :—
That which is known as the Louis Creek section comprises an extensive area of excellent
agricultural land, admirably adapted to mixed farming and stock raising. The soil along the
river front is mostly of a rich, sandy loam; in certain parts a heavy clay. This section begins
practically from a point known as the " Fish Trap," and includes the Adams Lake Valley,
the Louis Creek Valley, and extends and includes the North Thompson Valley. The initial
point of Louis Creek is at the confluence of that creek with the North Thompson River, a
distance of thirty-six miles from Kamloops. There is a good waggon road from Kamloops to
and beyond that point, and the river is navigable for a considerable distance beyond. Good
fishing is had on both Louis Creek and the Barrier River, four miles beyond. The district
has a promising future, in consequence of its vast resources, as it abounds in mineral. There
are large deposits of excellent bituminous coal and a large area of excellent land, which will
furnish homes for hundreds of families, and to which the attention of incoming settlers will
surely be directed. This section is worthy of the attention of the Government.
Wheat.—On the Josephine ranch, which is about six miles south of the point I outlined
to be included in the section, W. W. Shaw threshed about 90 tons of fall wheat. He devotes
about 100 acres of his place to fall crop. None of it is raised for milling, but is applied
chiefly to fattening hogs and for chicken feed. Where the soil is as heavy as it is at some
points in this section, I can see no good reason why wheat could not be raised for milling purposes in sufficient quantity to supply say 100 barrels per diem. This would not necessitate
the going into exclusive wheat raising. The Red Fife is considered the best. This section
produces a first-class quality of hard wheat. The crop was not affected from any cause. There
were about 200 acres under wheat. The average yield was about three-quarters of a ton to
the acre. A ready market is had in Kamloops, the ruling price being from $20 to $26 per
ton. As the wheat is used for feed, so far very little attention has been given to the selection
of seed or variety. Very heavy yields have been obtained in the wheat crops, particularly so
in the Adams Lake Valley, where as high as one and a-half tons have been produced to the
acre. The same results have been obtained at particular points in the Louis Creek and Dixon
Oats.—The same can be said in regard to the selection of seed. However, the Gothland,
Banner and Flying Scotchman are varieties that have proven heavy yielders in this section.
In places such as Adams Lake, and at certain points in the Louis Creek and Dixon Creek
valleys, the growth is very rank, sometimes causing the grain to lodge. The yield at these
points is from 1,800 to 2,000 pounds to the acre. The general average yield in the district is
about 1,500 pounds to the acre. Ruling price, $20 to $30 per ton.
Other grains are grown, and the yields are good, but are produced principally for feed.
Beans are successfully grown as a field crop.
Potatoes yield from 6 to 8 tons to the acre; prices range from $10 to $15 per ton.
Timothy, Clover and Alfalfa are the principal grasses grown.
Indian Corn is successfully grown.
Fruit.—Very little attention, so far, has been given to fruit-growing. On the Louis
Creek Ranch there is a small orchard of about twenty-five trees of the hardy variety of apples,
which is doing well. The most of the trees are now in bearing. In the Adams Lake Valley
a few trees were put out on the Raven Ranch; they also have done well. I am of opinion
that fruit trees of the hardy kind would thrive in certain localities of this section. Small
fruits of every kind do well. Strawberries and raspberries are exceptionally luscious. There
are no diseases.
Cattle.—Cattle raising is practically the only paying branch connected with the agricultural industry in this section. Each settler is aiming to increase his herd; there are about 1 Ed. 7 Report on Agriculture. 25
1,500 head of cattle in the district at present. The "Cattle Ranges Act," as it stands, is a
dead letter, from the fact that there is no one to put it in force. What is required to make it
effective is the appointment of mounted constables or range riders.
Sheep.—This is not a sheep country. Sheep would not pay on account of the inroad of
Cold Storage.—The farmers in this section have expressed themselves in no uncertain
terms in favour of cold storage; they seem to have a full appreciation of the advantages of
such provisions, and I am sure would willingly co-operate in its maintenance.
Experimental Station.—I am strongly of the opinion that an Experimental Farm
established in the Dry Belt would be of incalculable benefit, and advantageous to the interior
of this Province. The Dominion Experimental Farm at Agassiz is doing excellent work, but
it must be remembered that both the soil and conditions there are entirely dissimilar to that
of the interior, that being in the wet, where crops are grown without irrigation, while in the
interior irrigation is needed. Therefore, I think an Experimental Farm somewhere in the Dry
Belt would be of great benefit in disseminating agricultural information. I think the results
would amply justify the expenditure.
Farmers' Institutes.—The Farmers' Institute is doing good work here. We have one
in this district, and those connected with it are pleased with the work it is doing. It is a
medium through which much knowledge flows to the farmer, on matters directly affecting his
interests, which would have otherwise been overlooked.
Irrigation.—Confining myself to the Louis Creek section, irrigation is carried on to
some extent, but in many years crops are raised without irrigation. Nearly all the occupied
land has sufficient water for present use.
Timber.—The principal trees in this section are fir, bull pine, jack pine, birch, cotton-
wood, poplar, willow, spruce, cedar, hemlock and balsam. These are found on both wet, dry,
high and low land.
Forest Fires.—The best means for preventing forest fires is in the appointment of forest-
fire rangers, whose duty it would be to protect the forest from fire, by prosecuting offenders,
as forest fires are most generally caused by carelessness, sometimes by Indians, and again by
prospectors. The "Bush Fire Act," without some one to enforce its provisions, like the "Game
Protection Act," is all waste paper, so far as its effectiveness is concerned.
Land.—There is over 50,000 acres of excellent arable land that is available for pre-emption in this section. It is outside of the Railroad Belt, and is all good bottom land on both
sides of the North Thompson River, lightly timbered with some fir, poplar, cottonwood,
willows and such like, extending for eighty miles up the river.
Labour.—Labourers can be obtained : Whites, from $25 to $35; Chinese, $35 per month;
and Indians $1.50 per day. o
In which is included Upper, Central and Lower Nicola, is a fine pastoral country, with
extensive valleys of good land for general agriculture. A waggon road, some 110 miles in
length, having its termini at Spence's Bridge and Kamloops, gives access to the Canadian
Pacific Railway. The Douglas Lake Cattle Company and the British Columbia Cattle Company
have extensive cattle ranges in this section, where a large number of beef cattle are produced
for the coast markets. General crops of grain, grasses and roots are successfully produced with
irrigation, the soil being very productive, and available water is to be had in most parts. large
fruits are not generally successful, but are produced in some favoured spots, such as Quil-
chena, on Nicola Lake. The altitude of the lake is variously given at from 1,920 to 2,120
feet, that of Spence's Bridge being 996 feet, and of Kamloops, 1,153 feet.
At Nicola Lake, for 1900, the rainfall was 12.43 inches; snowfall, 19.4 inches; temperature, lowest (November), - 18.5°; temperature, highest (July), 89.0°.
Mr. Thomas Bulman, correspondent, Upper Nicola, reports as follows for vicinity of
Wheat is only raised for hog and chicken feed, there being no flour mill in the district—
a much-felt want. Production is about 28 bushels per acre, first-class for milling; Red Fife
and White Russian. Ruling price, $25 per ton. 26 Report on Agriculture. 1901
Oats.—Early Gothland, Tartarian, Egyptian and Banner are cultivated, the latter being
the most suitable. Price, $25 per ton.
Barley.—Duck Bill and 6-rowed is grown to some extent. The soil is adapted to barley
growing, and we could raise quite a lot of a good quality if there was a market.
Rye.—Fall rye is grown, but not extensively.
Potatoes are very successfully grown, but the crop this year was light, on account of the
wet season and the ravages of the cut-worm. Ruling price, $10 per ton. Varieties grown:
Early and Late Rose, Beauty of Hebron, Snowflake and Burbank Seedling.
Hay and Grasses.—Timothy, large Red clover, Alsike and Sanfoin are the principal
grasses; about two tons to the acre. Prices ruling, $5 to $10 per ton. Timothy is our best
grass; it seems to stand the changes of the weather better than anything else. Alfalfa is far
better for stock where it will grow. Austrian Brome grass, what little 1 have seen, has been
very successfully grown and stock seem to like it.
Horned Cattle.—The production of beef cattle is profitable, but I am of opinion that
sheep pay about twenty-five per cent, better. Price of beef cattle, 3-J- cents per pound; milch
cows, $45 per head, fierefords and Durhams are bred.
Horses.—The horse industry is looking up, and is on a little better basis here now. Most
people are going in for heavy horses; there have been far too many horses raised, and there is
no doubt but the same capital invested in cattle, sheep or hogs would pay better.
Sheep.—Sheep raising is carried on to a small extent, and pays very well. Cotswolds,
Shropshires and Southdowns are the favourites. Ruling prices are $3.50 for lambs, $5 to $7
per head for ewes and wethers. They bite a little too close for bunch-grass.
Lands.—There is no land available for pre-emption suitable for farming. Improved farms
can be bought at $4 to $5 per acre—good paying investments.
Labour.—Whites, $25 to $30 per month; Chinese and Japanese, $20 per month. We
get plenty of help of any class.
Mr. John Clapperton, correspondent, Central Nicola, reports as follows;—
The village of Nicola Lake, at which point the Provincial Government Office is located, is
about the centre of the division. It is situate by waggon road from Spence's Bridge, C. P. R.
station, 50 miles; from Kamloops, 60 miles; Princeton, 70 miles. A bi-weekly mail service
between Kamloops and Spence's Bridge, through the whole Nicola Valley, exists ; a weekly
mail service between Nicola Lake and Princeton. Telephonic communication between Lower
Nicola and Kamloops is present, and much valued by the people. Railway transit is expected
through the division ere long.
Wheat.—Sowings of fall wheats in the Nicola Division have always been limited, certainty
of crops depending greatly on snowfall. If wheat plants get well covered with snow, crop is
generally very good ; light snowfall and intense frost means mischief to winter wheat. Spring
wheats are in general cultivation, but there is now very little wheat grown in the district.
Flour, of best quality, can be brought into the valley and sold as cheaply as that made from
local wheat. Prices were $1.25 to $1.50 per 100 pounds, mostly for poultry feeding.
Oats.—Nearly all the best white varieties are more or less grown. Crop of this year
(1900) averaged between 40 and 50 bushels per acre. The grain filled well, and thrashed
freely. Did not hear of any blight on oat crop. Last spring oats were worth $2 per 100 lbs.;
present price, on the farm, $1.25 per 100 Bos.
Rye is only grown in late locations and on high lands, and is cut and saved for cattle
Peas are only grown in limited quantities for swine feeding.
Potatoes were this year a good average crop, when cut-worms were not present. Most
people prefer the white-skinned potato. Potatoes are only grown for home use.
All hardy vegetables and roots are grown for home consumption. This year nearly all
the cabbages were killed by cut-worms.
Grasses and Clovers.—Red, Crimson and Alsike clovers ; grasses, Perennial Rye, Cocksfoot (orchard grass), Kentucky Blue and Timothy, form the mixture in general use. From 1|-
to 3 tons of cured hay per acre, is about the annual yield from irrigated meadows. Fertilisers
and mulching will soon be requisite to keep up returns from lands cut year in and year out.
I have no personal experience of the Brome grass. No artificial grasses will grow in this dry
section without irrigation; and when water is used, clover and grasses fill the bill. 1 Ed. 7 Report on Agriculture. 27
Native Grasses.—The only indigenous grass in this division, in profusion, is the famous
bunch-grass (Agropyrum divergens). Upon it all our animals feed and fatten, if the herbage
holds out. Have seen the wild Bromus inermis ; it is not common, and better for hay than
Ensilage.—Our dry climate in June, July, August, and often September, favours the
curing or drying of all fodder plants; and unless winter dairying comes into practice, I doubt
if any one of the present stock-raisers and farmers of Nicola ever builds a " silo."
Fruits.—Nearly every farmer has apple trees, and they are by no means a success.
When trees get to be of any size some kind of a dry rot .attacks them, and down they go.
Plums and cherries do well in places, and small fruits of all kinds do splendidly.
Dairying.—No creameries at Nicola and very little butter made.
Feeding.—The fattening of beef cattle for spring use is carried on to some extent by a
few farmers who have a surplus of hay and roots. The feeding has been a success so far as
the animals are concerned, and it just about pays the feeders, but nothing more. So far, house-
feeding has not been introduced.
Horned Cattle.—Stock-breeding and feeding is the main industry of the division.
Breeds comprise Shorthorn, Hereford and Polled Angus. As a beef-producing animal, perhaps
preference is given to the Herefords; they are hardy cattle, carrying fine coats of hair, which
help them in cold weather.
Horses.—Horse-breeding has not been a profitable pursuit of late years; very little
demand for even good animals at low prices. There are a number of very serviceable horses
for sale throughout the district.
Swine.—Some two or three farmers breed and feed pigs for the Coast consumption.
Berkshire, Chester and other breeds are kept by those engaged in raising them.
Soils.—Cultivation in this division has been so far limited. Scientific farming is ignored.
All lands under irrigation yield good returns, notwithstanding the neglect, in many instances,
of manures or other fertilising agencies.
Clearing Lands.—Large areas of bottom lands have been cleared. Stumping machines
were tried, but as the timber was chiefly willow, cottonwood, light birch, etc., hand labour
has been considered best. The cost of clearing land depends entirely on how it is done, and
the density of undergrowth and timber to be removed.
Diseases of Animals.—So far our horned cattle have been exempt from contagious
disease. Horses are subject to epizootic, etc.; have never heard of a case of glanders.
Irrigation.—Outside of indigenous plants, cereals, roots, artificial grasses—in brief, everything that requires cultivation—must on all plains or bench lands be irrigated. Most ranches
are fairly supplied with water.
Weeds.—The Act is not enforced against thistles as vigorously as it should be. Thistles
are spreading, and will soon be hard to deal with. Canadian thistles were introduced in this
section through oats imported from the East.
Cut-Worms.—The range of the cut-worm last summer appears to have been provincial.
Would like to know how entomologists account for their wide-spread presence and sudden
appearance, last summer, in such numbers.
Lands.—Very little Crown land in this division open to pre-emption; all taken up years
ago that was worth locating. Mountain pasturage is $1 per acre; arable land that can be
irrigated, $2.50 per acre ; wild meadow, $5 per acre.
Labourers.—Whites, $1.25 to $1.50 per day, with board; Chinese, $1 ; Japanese, $1 ;
Indians, $1, $1.25 and $1.50.
Mr. H. S. Cleasby, correspondent, Lower Nicola, reports as follows :—
This district forms part of the well-known Nicola Valley, being, in fact, the lower end of
that fertile trough in British Columbia's sea of mountains. The valley, as a rule, is not more
than three-quarters of a mile wide, through which the Nicola River meanders with many a
turn and twist. In what is locally known as the Forks, being the land at the junction of the
Nicola and Coldwater Rivers, is a triangle of level land, containing about 1,000 acres of very
fertile land. The alluvial soil along the banks of the rivers, originally covered with a heavy
growth of poplars, willows and alders, is, when cleared, very productive, producing immense
crops of hay and grain. The bench lands, when sufficient water can be procured, are capable
of growing almost anything which can be produced in the temperate zone. The principal
industry is cattle raising. Some cattle are winter-fed for the spring market, affording an 28 Report on Agriculture. 1901
outlet for surplus hay. There is a local market with teamsters and the neighbouring mining
camps of Aspen Grove, Granite Creek and Similkameen, for a certain amount of grain and
garden produce. The population is scattered. There is one school at Lower Nicola. Fish
abound in the rivers and streams, and there is no lack of shooting in the proper season.
Wheat is not much grown, owing to lack of milling facilities. Golden Drop is the
principal fall wheat grown; average crop, 2,000 pounds. Campbell's White Chaff and White
Australian are the principal spring wheats ; average yield, 1,500 pounds. Prices, $30 for new
and $35 for old.
Oats.—Improved Ligowo and White Maine are grown. The first-named gave a crop with
myself of 76 bushels per acre, weighing 44 pounds per bushel. Average yield, 1,500 pounds
per acre. Price, up to Sept. 1st, $45 per ton; new crop, $25 per ton. I practise bluestoning
oats, as advised by Dominion Experimental Farms Report, about every second year.
Barley.—Only common, Six-rowed variety grown here, and not much of that. Yield,
about 2,000 pounds per acre; price, $25 per ton.
Rye.—Fall rye is the only kind grown; only grown by myself in this district for seed.
Many people at higher altitudes grow it to cut for hay. Yield, 1,100 pounds per acre; price,
$30 per ton. Not a very profitable crop.
Peas.—Varieties : Alaska, Mummy, Shropshire, Hero, Victoria, Golden Vine, principally.
Yield, 2,000 pounds per acre; price, $25 per ton. More might be grown to advantage, as
their effect in increasing the fertility of the land is most marked in succeeding crops.
Potatoes.—Early Rose, principally; also American Wonder, Green Mountain and Late
Puritan. Yield, 6 to 7 tons per acre; price, $10 to $15 per ton. Some damage reported from
cut-worms. Have observed a little disease these last two seasons, which have been exceptionally damp.
Mangolds.—Golden Tankard has done best with me so far; keeps well and is easily
harvested. Long Reds give largest crop, but do not keep so well and cost more to harvest.
None other grown, to my knowledge. Yield, 14 tons per acre. Grow them only for own use;
feed them to fatten cattle.
Turnips.—Very few grown. Yield at the rate of 20 to 25 tons per acre. Purple Top
Swede seems to do best; had them weigh as high as 24 pounds this year.
Sugar Beet.—I grew some beets this year from seed supplied by Vancouver Sugar
Refinery. Did fairly well; crop about 10 tons per acre on unmanured land. Nothing known
as to sugar content.
Grasses and Clovers.—Timothy, Red and Alsike Clover, Sanfoin, a little Alfalfa, and
some Cocksfoot. Timothy and a mixture of the clovers is the favourite here, and seems likely
to remain so. Timothy is not a pasture grass, but it is not pasture but hay that we are after.
Average yield, about 2,500 pounds per acre; price, from $6 to $10, loose ; about $2.50 per ton
extra for baling.
Austrian Brome Grass.—It has not done well with me; has not been tried to any
extent. I found that Volunteer Timothy among my Brome Grass was much the heavier yield.
Native Grasses.—My experience in feeding leads me to believe that some of the native
grasses of the country are most nutritious.
Indian Corn.—Sweet corn for table use does well enough some seasons; have seen ensilage corn here 11 feet high.
Rape.—Tried it this year as a soiling crop. For pigs am well satisfied with it; shall
sow it again.
Apples.—Only the hardiest varieties of apples are a success here. Crabs of different
kinds are grown. Crop small on account of late spring frosts. Prices low, 2| cents, on account
of large crop in other places.
Other Fruits.—Pears a precarious crop. Plums, the same. Cherries do well, but were
injured by frost this season.
Small Fruits do splendidly. All kinds of currants, raspberries and strawberries produce
abundantly. Gooseberries are subject, more or less, to mildew.
Dairying.—Some parties on outlying places milk several cows. In the Nicola Valley
itself, pasturage is too scarce and scant. People won't milk after they get a good band of
cattle around them. Probably about 1,000 pounds of butter produced, which does not sell well
at all, in competition with creamery butter.
Feeding.—Have fed cattle for beef for some winters past; until last winter have fed hay
alone. Last winter fed 15 to 20 pounds per head each day of pulped mangolds, mixed with 1 Ed. 7 Report on Agriculture. 29
clover chaff, with satisfactory results. Feed twice a day with hay in cribs, at the rate of from
40 to 50 pounds per day per head. About one-fourth of this is left, and periodically the cribs
are cleaned out and the refuse hay given to stock cattle. Roots are given in middle of the day.
Horned Cattle.—The principal industry, and at present in a thriving condition, because
of high prices. The cattle and sheep industries will not thrive alongside of each other. Cattle
will not graze after sheep. Prices—Fat steers, 3 J cents per pound, live weight, $40 per
head ; fat cows, 3 cents per pound, live weight, $30 per head. Prefer Shorthorns.
Horses.—Profitable, if good ones are bred ; not an over-production of good horses. A
great scarcity of suitable saddle-horses, which are in constant demand. Heavy team horses
find a ready sale in the Coast towns; also light horses, suitable for express and other light
waggons. The great bulk of the horses here are, neither one nor the other.
Swine.—Some people make it the principal part of their business. Pigs on foot are worth
5i to 6Jt cents per pound ; dressed pork, 8 to 9 cents ; bacon and hams, 12 to 18 cents.
Diseases of Animals.—Epizootic has been noticed among horses, but we are singularly
free from disease. Lump-jaw is considered to be on the decrease.
Experimental Stations.—Could not this be done better by co-operation between the
two Governments, and something on the lines of Prof. Robertson's scheme of " Illustration
Stations"? Let the seed be supplied from the Dominion Experimental Farms, and the grower
be allowed so much by the Provincial Government for his trouble, etc., in keeping records and
showing people around, the grower to be allowed to keep the crop. Experimental stations
need to be plentiful in this Province, on account of the great difference in climate experienced.
As to its being the duty of the Dominion, I think not in the small way that I have outlined
it. The County Councils are doing this work in Great Britain.
Agricultural Education.—I doubt if a mere smattering of the subject such as would
be taught in a public school, will be of much benefit. A few scholarships to the Guelph Agricultural College, or some similar institution, offered for competition among farmers' sons—at
least one scholarship for each electoral district embracing agricultural land—would, I think,
be of more lasting benefit. Thus many who now despise " book-farming " would be able to
see from results what practical scientific farming can do.
Soils.—There is a deficiency of lime, in my opinion. Plenty of limestone in vicinity, not
worked as yet.
Irrigation is necessary in most cases; along the river bottoms, however, the high water
in summer, caused by melting snow in the mountains, moistens the low land sufficiently. In
this district there is an abundance of water.
Timber.—The timber trees are :—Yellow pine, dry lands; fir, damp and rocky lands;
poplar, semi-damp lands; cottonwood, alder, black and silver birch, damp lands ; black pine,
dry mountains ; water spruce, wet mountains.
Weeds.—We have plenty of Canadian thistles, which are on the increase. What seems
likely to prove a worse weed is the perennial sow thistle, which is spreading badly in this neighbourhood. Other bad weeds are wild oats—one farmer (?) cultivates them for hay—false flax,
wild turnip and wild buckwheat.
Entomological.—Cut-worms did some damage in a few isolated cases, principally to
Noxious Animals and Animal Pests.—Complaints have been made of coyotes killing
calves and foals on the mountains. Present bounty ($2) sufficient. Panthers seem to be
becoming more abundant ; cause unknown.
Lands.—No Government land left worth taking up ; no railway land. Improved farms,
from $10 per acre up.
Labour.—Whites, $25 to $30 per month, good men; Chinese, $15 to $25, summer
months; Indians, $1 to $1.50 per day. Indians in the preponderance ; supply about equal to
the demand; slight scarcity sometimes for a few weeks in harvest time. 30 Report on Agriculture. 1901
Lower Thompson River Valley,
Including Ashcroft, Spence's Bridge, Lytton and Savona.
I group these all together inasmuch as they are all on the main line of the Canadian
Pacific Railway, and being under the same climatic and other conditions, the excellent report
of the Hon. C. F. Cornwall, correspondent at Ashcroft, answers for the whole region.
This district may truly be said to be unexcelled for the production of fruit of nearly all
kinds; and although peaches have not, owing to the peculiarity of the climate, been a perfect
success, I have no doubt that certain kinds, and in certain locations, may yet be successfully
cultivated. With cheap freight rates and its proximity to the coast markets, this district
would be able to supply all the tomatoes, grapes, melons and similar products that are consumed, to the exclusion of the California fruits. From recent discussions between the growers
and the authorities of the Canadian Pacific Railway, there is, I am glad to say, an apparent
disposition on the part of the latter to make more equitable rates, and it is hoped with the
proposed reduction that a great impetus will be given to fruit-growing.
Timber is not abundant on the lower lands; there is, however, a sufficiency for farming-
purposes and fuel. On the hills, however, there is an ample supply. The principal timber