Okanagan Explosion

Agriculture by Ashlee Lakovic Block-G

History Of Agriculture in the Okanagan Valley

Origins & Dates

  • First fruit trees planted in the Okanagan appeared in 1857 and were planted by Lord & Lady Aberdeen.
  • The Aberdeen family was very popular with agriculture, they had many successes. They planted the first fruit trees and had the biggest orchard.
  • in 1862, the Oblate Fathers planted apple trees at their mission farm near present-day Kelowna.
  • In 1869, Tom Ellis planted apple trees on his Penticton Ranch.
  • The history of fruit growing in the British Columbia Interior says the first apple trees in the Indian reserve at Inn Kameep were planted due to the discovery of the wealth it brought.
  • in 1886, Charles Ora Card spent several weeks travelling through the boundary country and the Okanagan to find the incredible income.
  • In 1897, the third orchard was planted at Ingiewood Ranch and consisted of 35 acres.
  • In 1906, Richter won 23 prizes at the Annual Provincial Exhibition in New Westminster for his apples, pears, peaches and plums.


Early agriculture significant on the growth of the Okanagan Valley was because it helped feed a lot of the citizens with income, and hunger but it also gave the Okanagan a reputation of well produced fruits. The Okanagan Valley agriculture was a great contributor that helped the economy in today's world. Agriculture is a huge part in a lot of citizens lives. Since the early 1800's, agriculture has flourished and we still produce crops today, with the same great reputation.

Role of the Okanagan Fur Brigade Trail in the Development of Agriculture

The Fur Brigade Trail made an easy transportation to the Valley, which made immigrants notice the beautiful land. This brought a lot of settlers. Miners, missionaries, ranchers and farmers are all people who found the land and developed it. Their were a lot of advantages in the life of the Okanagan with fertile soil and the weather. The role of this historic trail in the development agriculture was the bringing of settlers to the Okanagan. It was an important form of communication, and made it easier to travel in and out of the valley, and with that the population of the Okanagan grew.

Early European Profile: Lord & Lady Aberdeen

Early History

  • 480 acres of land in two different shores of the Okanagan Lake; purchased in 1900's.
  • 200 acres in cold stream, Vernon.
  • 180 acres in Guisachan Ranch, Kelowna.
  • Slow progress with cattle at first.
  • Aberdeen family began Gordon
  • Aberdeen family were the first to plant fruit trees in the Okanagan; lots were planted.
  • Lord Aberdeen had many responsibilities government positions.
  • The Aberdeen's worked to improve conditions for the poor.
  • They returned only twice to Scotland, their hometown while still managing their farmlands in the Okanagan Valley.

Reasons For Settlement In Okanagan Valley

Lord and Lady Aberdeen came to the Okanagan Valley for an anniversary vacation. While they were in the Okanagan they found beautiful lands and fertile soil. They believed that they could make an income with agriculture. They decided to buy lands, plant fruit trees, harvest fruits, and have a cattle ranch. They wished for one day to surprise the world with their products. They settled for the beautiful land of the Okanagan Valley and the nice fertile soil.

Early Accomplishments

Before the Aberdeen's had made it to the Okanagan, they were the Lady and Lord of their town. In Scotland they were royalty. Their accomplishments in North America was Lord Aberdeen had become the Governor General of Canada from 1893-1898. He had a big role in Canada. Where as Lady Aberdeen was an aristocrat, democrat, and also the President of International Council of Women from 1893-1936. Lady Aberdeen was also the National Council of Women of Canada from 1893-1899. They had a great impact on Canada with their accomplishments.

Accomplishments in Okanagan Valley

They owned 480 acres of farmland in Okanagan in the 1900's. The early orchard's was Cold-stream Ranch in Vernon (200 acres) and Guisachan Ranch in Kelowna (180 acres). The Aberdeen's were one of the first fruit industries in the Okanagan Valley. They planted lots of fruit trees, produced lots of produces and had a lot of cattle. The Aberdeen's had a lot of accomplishments in the Okanagan Valley.

Legacy Today

The Aberdeen's have a greatly described legacy. During this project I learned many things about them that still live on today. The Aberdeen's developed and invested in their adopted country and encouraged many of their English countrymen to settle in the Okanagan. The new Canadian estate drew in lots of settlers to the Okanagan nation.The Ranch became the site of the first large-scale planting of fruit trees. The Cold-stream , the newspaper nailed the sale to the Aberdeen's as " The Best Advertisement the Okanagan Country has ever had!" The Aberdeen's have the legacy of royalty, ranchers, and helpers of the community.

Final Task

What was the Impact of the Early Europeans on the Growth and Development of the Okanagan Valley?

The impact Lord and Lady Aberdeen had on the growth and the development of the Okanagan Valley was significantly large! They gave a lot to the citizens of the Okanagan. They produced and harvested different kinds of food such as vegetables and fruits. They impacted the Okanagan greatly because they saw how well agriculture would do in this beautiful land and took advantage of the opportunity that came to them. Without the Aberdeen's the Okanagan would most likely not be known for their greatly harvested fruits.

Interesting Facts

  • The Aberdeen family had many responsibilities with the Government.
  • Guisachan Ranch is now a restaurant.