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Monday, 30 May 2016

For Spring Planting

Here in Summerside, Prince Edward Island, city council notifies the community when a container ship is unloading at the waterfront. At that time, truck traffic increases in the area. One day recently, the Atlantic Huron was unloading and trucks were loading at the dock.

 

The Atlantic Huron, a lake boat of the Canadian Steamship Line, unloaded what looked like fertilizer or pesticides for the potato fields. The fields are sprayed with chemicals several times during the growing season, so the process has begun again as the fields are planted for the year.

 

The ship unloads quickly as the trucks line up to receive their powdery cargo. Referred to as a self unloading vessel, the Atlantic Huron is part of a fleet of self unloaders which sail the Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence Seaway to the east coast of Canada. This is not a vessel which plies the high seas.

The link shows how these vessels unload, with an operator and a few people to oversee the process. Imagine the number of jobs this technology has replaced dock-side alone!


From the fields to the dock, everything about the potato industry is industrialized. Long gone are the days of the horse, plow and the people who helped with the planting and harvesting. Now the fertilizers are chemical not organic, such as seaweed or manure. 

 

However, this past year, some Amish families from Ontario have moved to Prince Edward Island, buying up farms in the eastern county. Communities there are making accommodations for horses by installing hitching posts. It may mean organically grown crops will be more readily available.

Less chemicals on the land would be a good thing!

17 comments:

  1. I make a real effort to eat only organically grown veggies. Potatoes are a luxury for me, but you reminded me how much our world has changed everywhere. Thanks for the lesson. I am glad to hear the Amish are going to be taking over some areas because they grow organic. :-)

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    1. The problem with organic now is the cost. Everyone deserves organic food and industrial farming like we have it is not going to go organic unless people demand it. Such is not the case.

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  2. I'd like to see one of their farms working here but at £30/£40.00p per tonne I don't think they could make it pay.

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    1. They are moving here because young families could not afford to purchase land in Ontario at $20,000-$$30,000 per acre. Here the land is one tenth of that price.

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  3. Having lived in Sarnia for many decades, I am very familiar with Lakers. That is about all that we saw.

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    1. Such huge ships and so fast unloading.

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  4. My father sailed the great lakes for several years in the '30's as the radio operator on ore boats. He would be so interested in all the changes.

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    1. How interesting, Joanne. Our parents would be amazed with the technology today.

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  5. Less chemicals on lands would certainly be a great thing. Thanks for sharing and nice week!

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    1. Imagine the savings in health care if less chemicals were used today.

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  6. The container ship looks huge. The self unloading is very clever. I too prefer organic food I hope the Amish make a success in farming in a more natural way. Sarah x

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    1. I hope they do too, Sarah. It will be good to have more options produced locally.

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  7. I've said it before but I sure wish I lived closer so I could see all the interesting things that you post. It must be fascinating to have the Amish come to your Island and perhaps you can tell us more about that ...although I don't think they relish publicity.

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    1. They live about two hours away from here, but I'm sure their horses and wagons will be around that area of the island. We may see them when we visit over there.

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  8. My visit to your island left me with a little disappointment that there was not more natural land or wild animals. It was a tidy place but seemed to have been re-sculpted tremendously by mankind.

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    1. The island was originally granted to wealthy British families who had supported one of the British kings in a war. These absentee landlords had tennant farmers who worked the land. It is a small island and was divided into lots which were farmed. What you saw was the product of generations of working the land. We have few mammals on the island; foxes are among the top of the food chain, with rodents, skunks and the like. Lots of birds too. The island is a product of its history and a wonderful place to live.

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  9. Beautiful pics. I love to eat the veggies which is grown in our own garden.

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