Irrigating Orange Trees, Redlands, California

Special Collections > Keystone Slides
tiff scanned file from original glass slide
Among the foothills of the San Bernardino mountains are thousands of acres of orange trees. It is hard to believe that all these are growing where once was almost a desert. During the summer no rain falls in California, the earth becomes dried to a depth of several inches, and vegetation is burned brown. Water from the mountain streams has been led out to the gardens and groves and the land once so dry is made into one of the richest districts in the world. Notice how carefully the earth under the trees is cultivated. From the main ditch, carefully constructed to hold the water without leakage, side ditches or furrows lead the water out between the rows of trees where it soaks into the ground and waters the roots. Some men say that a god irrigation system is better than natural rain for rain does not always come when it is needed. In irrigation the water can be turned on or off whenever desired. A good irrigating system is very expensive. Sometimes the growers of a region unite in the construction; sometimes great companies are formed who bring the water to the farms and sell it to the users. The most difficult problem connected with irrigating s the division of water among users. One man cannot be allowed to use so much that his neighbors will not have enough, and new systems must not deprive old ones of their supply. In many states laws have been made governing the entire subject of irrigation. In 1870 the Department of Agriculture sent to California growers a newly discovered orange from Bahia (bä-´ä), Brazil. This was the navel orange, a fruit of rich flavor and seedless. Soon navel oranges became one of the most important crops of the state. Keystone ID: 13723 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.