Lina Island wheat crop doing well

  • Aug. 1, 2008 5:00 a.m.

by Alex Rinfret–This year’s colder-than-usual summer weather hasn’t affected George Pattison’s small wheat crop, which is flourishing and should be ready for harvest by the end of the month. Dr. Pattison said he has been pleasantly surprised by the growth of the Hard Red Spring wheat, which he planted in his garden near Lina Island on May 7. Three months later, the stalks are now about one metre tall with fat green kernels of grain forming at their tops. “It came up rapidly,” he said. “The thing is, our days are so long here in the summer, even on a dull day it’s getting many hours of sunshine.” Wheat does not need a lot of heat the way some crops like tomatoes do, Dr. Pattison said, although it can’t be grown successfully in far northern latitudes. But the climate on the Charlottes is the same as that in many western European countries which grow wheat, he said. Dr. Pattison grew a small patch of wheat in his island garden about 30 years ago but hasn’t grown any since then. He planted the crop again this year because he had just bought a rototiller. As food and fuel prices continue to rise there has been lots of interest in locally-grown food, and Dr. Pattison knows of several island gardeners who are growing first-time wheat crops this year. A first for Dr. Pattison is a couple of flattened patches in the middle of his wheat field which look like mysterious crop circles. He said they first appeared about three weeks ago and he had no idea what had caused them, although he later caught his dog romping in the field and now suspects that the crop circles may have a canine cause. Dr. Pattison plans to harvest the wheat with a scythe or sickle, but is not yet sure how he will separate the wheat kernels from the stalks, a process called threshing. He applied to the Gwaii Trust for funding to buy a threshing machine for the islands but hasn’t heard back. He is now planning to bring all the wheat to the Queen Charlotte ball park this September or October for a threshing party – all islanders and their ideas welcome.

Just Posted

Slow down for students: School zone speeds now in effect

RCMP will be making sure drivers keep it at 30 km/h or less, with heavy fines for breaking the law

Queen Charlotte fire hall is a go

Start of construction marked with groundbreaking ceremony

NCRD Board turns attention to Haida Gwaii

Fishing concerns, recreation commission, and Sandspit festival all receive focus

IV cancer treatment returning to Haida Gwaii

Arrival of a new pharmacy technician means the service can resume

Logging moves forward as court rules against Haida Gwaii protesters

Injunction won against activists seeking to protect culturally and archaeologically significant site

VIDEO: B.C. man’s yard comes alive with grizzlies at night

Malakwa man has captured images of 12 different grizzlies on video

A year after pot legalization in Canada, it’s a slow roll

It’s one year into Canada’s experiment in legal marijuana, and hundreds of legal pot shops have opened

ELECTION 2019: Climate strikes push environment to top of mind for federal leaders

Black Press Media presents a three-part series on three big election issues

ICBC willing to loosen grip on driver claim data, David Eby says

Private insurers say claims record monopoly keeps them out

B.C. principal suspended for failing to help student who reported inappropriate touching

Principal didn’t remove student from the teacher’s class nor call the parents within a reasonable time

Port Moody mayor goes back on unpaid leave during sex assault investigation

Rob Vagramov said he intends to return as mayor in three or four weeks

UBC issues statement after instructor tells students to vote for Liberal Party

University says partisan messaging was not intentional

Cowichan Valley brothers win big in lottery for second time

Playing same numbers net big wins over a three year period

Fatal overdoses down by 33% in B.C., but carfentanil deaths continue to spike

Carfentanil, an illicit drug more powerful than fentanyl, causing more deaths than ever

Most Read