Kawartha Lakes Public Library - Digital Collections
Looking Back: There's more to farming than planting some seeds

Hooper, John, Author
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Written: 15 September 2000
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  • Ontario, Canada
    Latitude: 44.35012 Longitude: -78.73286
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Full Text

Few are the days that I do not look back and think of the pleasant times I had visiting with Jim and Gladys Dugan, my wife's aunt and uncle.

Their farm was located a stone's throw from Lochlin and many were the stories Jim would relate to me about farming and how his parents located up there.

I recall the day we were sitting on the front veranda and got to talking about how difficult farming is, especially for any novice who thought it was an easy life.

"A lot of folks think farming is just tossing some seed on the fields and waiting for it to grow," he said.

"Sure, anyone can dig up a piece of land and put in some vegetable seed, learn to hoe and weed, and learn a weed from a young vegetable plant growing out of the ground," he said. "But to actually farm in another thing."

He went on to tell me about a couple of "city folk" along with their two youngsters who moved up Lochlin way and settled on a farm next to his place. They desperately wanted to escape the smog in the city and decided the north country was a great place for them to move to.

They were the prime example of someone taking on farming and not knowing the first thing about it.

"They planned on making a fortune in farming and didn't do badly with their garden and raising chickens but they got into trouble when it came to handling cattle," said Jim.

"I'll never forget the day Gladys and I heard the darndest ruckus coming from down back of their farm and when we looked out to see what was going on, there they were, down in the brush with their two children, trying to steer their cows goodness knows where. Gladys and I decided we had better given them a hand rounding the cows up and found out what they were trying to do," said Jim.

As it happened, when the Dugans queried the couple as to their intent, the husband said they were heading to a nearby farmer who had a bull.

"Well tell me, which one is it who wants the bull," asked Jim.

"What do you mean?" asked the neighbour.

"Well which one do you want to mate with the bull?" I asked.

"Oh, all of them!" he replied.

"Johnny, I explained to him that you don't take a cow to a bull when it meets your fancy and finally got through to them what they were to look for in selecting the cow that wanted to mate with the bull," said Jim.

"It was just a few short weeks later that they sold their stock and property and went back to the city," he concluded. Friday,

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Looking Back: There's more to farming than planting some seeds