Saturday, 25 February 2017

                                                                    " The Orchard"

Yes, there really was an Orchard in the Esther Community. A gentleman by the name of Allan Stewart traveled from Ontario with his sister and filed a homestead on the NE 1/4-14-31-2W4. He had difficult times making a go of growing grain and surviving on a 1/4 section of very light land. He joined up with a friend and they traveled the harvest circuit in Montana and states east. When he came back to Esther he decided he needed to protect his shack from the winds so he started planting a shelterbelt. Inside the shelterbelt, he started planting fruit trees, small apples, and plums and they flourished in that type of soil. Everyone in the community would go to the "Orchard" in the fall to pick and purchase fruit from Mr. Stewart. I remember him very well as his place was only a half mile east of our farm. In 1954 Mr. Stewart fell ill and went back to Ontario, he sold the property to my Dad. To this day I believe there are still apples growing there even tho no one is there to look after them. Just imagine an "Orchard" in the middle of the prairie.

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Olive Parks, my Mom, she was about 3 or 4 in this photo. It would have been taken at my Grandparents farm south of Esther in the Hudson He...