Our farming history

Our farm was established in 1987.  We have landscaped and planted trees as we needed a wind break on top of our windy hill!  Those first few summers were windy and so cold.  We used Saskatoon berry bushes as hedges, apple trees as specimens and planted the shelterbelts around our yard.     

The first shelterbelt around the yard was planted in the spring of 1988.  Twice we have stood by as late spring snows ripped branch after branch from our beautiful poplar trees.  The heavy snow bent the branches so low it was hard to recognize the trees were there at all.   As the snow melted we heard the sickening creak of hundreds of branches as they snapped and fell to the ground. 



      

After the spring snowstorms of 2007, Bill and our youngest son needed the whole summer to clean up the mess.  Holding back all the useful firewood, seventy-five truck loads of smaller branches still needed to go to the dump. Today everything looks wonderful again and with all the rain we have been getting lately, it is no wonder 'they' call this the Parkland.

Like many of you, we have become sky watchers. Weather systems & patterns pass through leaving their effect on every crop year.  Some summers have been a delight, others have been a pain!  In the summer of 2002, our oldest son and his bride chose to have their wedding celebration on the farm.  Our hay crop dried right up that spring;  we had no moisture at all!  So, instead of putting up the hay and getting a hay cheque, we concentrated on preparing for the upcoming wedding.  We still watch the skies for the rain and the heat that our fruits, veggies and trees need.

For 20 years we worked diligently raising hogs as a livelihood, putting 'pork on your fork'.  As of January 2010 the barns were all but gone.    We have said our farewell to a proud, but battered hog industry.  We want to convert the structure into a greenhouse, garage, processing area and work shop.

For many years we grew Timothy Hay selling to Japan and local markets. We loved baling out in the fields on those warm and breezy days listening to the sounds of the tractor and baler working together binding up the hay.  It was fun when the weather was good.  One year we were finished in the middle of August and took time for a day trip to the mountains, and then there was a year where we were baling into December.  We ending up round baling, the hay just never got dry enough in the summer and fall, it had to freeze dry! 

At Billyco Junction Gardens we have provided a place for you and your children to connect with the outdoors, and a taste of farming.  But if you can't get to us, we have in place a CSA Program (Community Shared Agriculture), which gives you an opportunity to buy a share and get your vegetables and fruits harvested and delivered weekly to central locations. We offer working shares as well, where you choose your hours and help on the farm in exchange for your share.  We always appreciate when people can volunteer some time to help with weeding and harvesting.