Harvesting Celery Near Kalamazoo, Michigan

Special Collections > Keystone Slides
tiff scanned file from original glass slide
The region about Kalamazoo has made a reputation for itself in the production of celery. The ground is a rich, black muck deposited formerly by the Kalamazoo River. A rich soil is one of the first requirements for celery production. A temperate climate is also essential. Celery is grown from seeds which are started in hotbeds. The plants are usually set in other beds before they are out in the fields. The celery is set out in straight rows 4 or 5 feet apart. Sometimes the plants in the rows are set a foot from each other. But in the method of farming practiced about Kalamazoo, they are set a great deal closer. The distance depends on the manner of bleaching that is to be used when the plants are grown up. The ground between the rows is cultivated very thoroughly. The chief feature of celery farming, however, is the bleaching or blanching. To keep the celery stalks from becoming tough, it is necessary to protect them from the wind and sun. This is done in some cases by making ridges of earth about the plants as rapidly as they grow. But where the plants have been set very close together, the bleaching is done by boards set up on either side of the rows. The view shows the way in which celery harvesting is carried on. A single board is taken from each side of the row. The stalks which it protected are broken off and carefully placed upon it. These are gathered at once, hauled to the packing house, where they are washed, crated, and immediately sent to market. The harvesting is usually done in the early morning so the talks will not be toughened by the sunshine. Explain briefly how celery is grown. Keystone ID: 16716 Note: All titles, descriptions, and location coordinates are from the original Keystone Slide documentation as supplied by the Keystone View Company. No text has been edited or changed.
Copyright by the Keystone View Company. The original slides are housed in McConnell Library's Special Collections.