Grain Production Workshop in August, Salt Spring Island

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July 24th, 2010 by Admin

Salt Spring Island’s Foxglove Farm is the creation of farmer and Author Michael Ableman. Envisioned as a space for art, agriculture and community, the farm hosts a variety of educational events and retreats throughout the year.  This August 24-27 they are offering the opportunity to  join three highly knowledgeable instructors for a three -day workshop about Small Scale Grain Production. Billed as appropriate for those interested in producing for their own families or for other small businesses, this could be a great opportunity for any of you who are interested in taking the Urban Grains values to the next level and growing your own.

Please visit buy discount cialis online Foxglove’s website for more information.

Cedar Isle Photo Album: consequences of a long, cold, wet stretch

July 10th, 2010 by Admin

agassiz-weather-forecast

A ray of hope!

It’s been wet here, folks. I’m sure that everyone who has lived through the past few months in the Lower Mainland can sympathize with our grain in the feeling that we’ve all had our feet wet for far too long.

Last year, which was Urban Grains’ first season of operation, we were blessed  with exceptionally hot and dry conditions, basically ideal for growing grain. Perhaps that was the universe’s way of encouraging this little endeavour. This year is different though, and it seems that even if we were handed an easy pass last season, we are being challenged in the current one.

Jim has just sent along these photos, which show the damage that the crops have suffered, but also some encouraging progress.

Below, you can see a head of Triticale looking fat and fine, in a photo that was taken on the first truly sunny day in months. As a fall-planted crop, it has seen a hard winter and has come out the other side looking battered, but still going. In the background is Mt. Cheam, still capped by clouds.

triticale head

This next shot was taken in the winter wheat field. Again, the w.w. has struggled all winter, first with a long bout of leaf rust, and later with the hardships of the cool, wet spring.

rusty-winter-wheat

The grain you see below is soft white spring wheat, planted just before the rainy stretch of the early summer. Jim thinks that it should mature well if we get some good heat now in the late summer.

soft-white-spring-wheat

Likewise, the hard red spring wheat has put on a lot of growth and now has ample  stored up to make the most of the hot, sunny weather.

hard-red-spring-wheat

Below is a field containing two different hard red spring wheat varieties. A variety dating back to 1969 (to the left of the photo) is distinct from its bearded modern counterpart (centre and right of photo).  With continued good weather, both varieties should make excellent wheat for milling.

hard-red-spring-wheat-two-varieties

Here now is a head of each of the grains we discussed in the photo above. On the left is Neepawa, released as a new variety in 1969, which was common across the prairies in the 1970s. Seed was obtained from organic grower Norbert Kratchmer in Saskatchewan specifically to trial in the Fraser Valley for Urban Grains.

On the right is the more recent (bearded) variety CDC Go, which was the main variety grown for Urban Grains last year.

hard-red-spring-wheat-2-varieties-head

So that’s it for now. Lots of sogginess, but lots of growth, too. And a positive outlook for the next few months. Jim sounds extremely relieved to be coming out of the rain clouds and into the real heat of summer. And I must admit, I am with him.

July Event: Cereal Grains Open House Field Day in Delta

July 10th, 2010 by Admin

Details of the Urban Grains Farm Visit will be announced soon. If you’re interested in spending some time in the fields in the meantime, consider checking out this open house event in Delta!

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JOIN the 2010 Delta Farmers – UBC Land and Food Systems cereal grains variety trials open house field days

On display 11 varieties of spring barley, 2 types of spring oats, 14 winter wheat and 12 spring wheat varieties sourced from UK, France, Ontario, Quebec, Prairies, Maritimes, Michigan, Indiana, and Pacific Northwest (Washington, Oregon and Idaho) in side-by-side field trials.

DATES & TIMES: Friday, July 16th from 1-4 pm and Saturday, July 17th from 9am till noon

DIRECTIONS: The wheat field is on the Montgomery home/farm at 3010 River Road West, Ladner. Generic viagra 25 mg From Ladner, head west along River Road West, continue past the Westham Island Bridge to the Montgomery Farm- near Brunswick Point.and follow the signs at the Montgomery farm out to the variety trials fields.

Any questions beforehand:

Wayne Temple wtemple@interchange.ubc.ca (604) 327-6487 or (604) 351-7164 cell

DeLisa Lewis (604) 731-0294 delisa@interchange.ubc.ca