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Volume 82/83 (2015/2016)

Between Orchard and Highway: Roadside Produce Stands as Rural Artifact and Enterprise

June 15, 2017


Family-built, owned, and operated fruit stands sprouted up along the major roads of British Columbia’s southern Interior in the early 1950s, when “farm-gate” sales were the only way to sell fruit outside the province’s co-operative marketing system. Early fruit stands were often no more than crates of produce displayed at the point where orchard met road, but over time some became central to their owners’ orchard operations and were further enlarged and improved. Using two of BC’s longest-running fruit stand operations as case studies, this article traces the emergence, evolution, and persistence of this familiar yet oft-overlooked form of vernacular commercial and agricultural architecture, which has been a signature feature of the region’s landscape for more than half a century.