The Ashburton Guardian. Magna est Veritas et Prævalebit WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 7, 1889 THE A. AND P. ASSOCIATION.
It is always a matter for congratulation to see a local institution prospering, more particularly when, as m tho case of tho Ashburton Agricultural and Pastoral Association, its objects are to promote the common good of tho community. It would naturally bethought that m a district so purely agricultural and pastoral as this tho Association would be o;m---spicuously prosperous, but this has not hitherto been tho case, for what reason we can scarcely understand. It may have been that m recent years farming has run too much m ono groove, tbat of grain growing, which certainly did not cnublo the farmer to send an exhibit to the show, which would awako much interest among the visitors. Tho more varied character of tho exhibits at last show we take to prove that farmers aro beginning to go m for a system of general farming, instead of putting all their eggs m ono basket, as wo have above suggested they may havo been m tho practice of doing. At the show, last November, there were exhibits of nearly all kinds of farm animals, products and appliances, and consequently all classes of farms wero represented, and there was something or other m which each visitor could take a special interest. This was as it should be. It showed that our farmers hare, whatever may be said to the contrary, a knowledge of tho various departments of their calling, and are not simply " wheat growers." Tho exigencies of low prices may havo influenced tbcm to adopt a "pot-boiling" system of farming for a time, but, as Mr Grigg said yesterday, the improvement m values of-pro-duce has enabled them to give moro attention to their hobbies — wo should rather havo Baid moro scopo to their knowledge of tho various branches of farming— and tho result was seen on tho show ground. It must not be supposed by those who have been instrumental m bringing about this satisfactory state of affairs that their work is ended, and that they aro now entitled to rest upon their laurels. Last show can only bo looked upon as ovidenco of tho beginning of a better condition of tho agricultural and pastoral interests, and having made a good beginning our farmers should persevere m their efforts to raise tho standard of farming m tho district to its proper level on an equality with any district m New Zealand. There aro many points m which the Ashburton county is far behind. Wo can show butter, cheese and bacon, for cxnmplo, as good as tho best iv the Colony, but wo fear that if tho genoral average quality of theso products camo to bo summed up it would bo found woefully wanting. Now that farmers have shown themselves well acquainted with general principles is is to bo hoped that tho necessity of giving attention to details will not bo lost > sight of till something Approaching ex- j coUence m nearly all blanches of farmiug is attainable; and the Association -should not rest until evidence of this is given at the annual show. Tho Association is a power towards this end, and as farming progresses m the direction wo havo indicated so will tho Association increase m prosperity.