Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Trying to Change

It's amazing what a little change in temperature and daylight does.  Autumn has started, and the cooler winter and ever-delayed sunrises have really slowed me down.  I don't have many chores to get ready for the winter.  I'll have to clean out the gardens, fill my compost bins with leaves, plant our garlic, and clean out the the flower beds.

I worked out over the weekend, but just didn't seem real motivated to work all day in the yard.  I gues my body is telling me to slow down and get ready for the quite times.

The big maples are starting to change . . . 

The leaves are really starting to accumulate . . .

The roads nearby are starting to be framed in color.

I'll need to start raking soon!

The sumac are really changing now.  It is definitely autumn.

The Black-Eyed Susans are looking spent . . .

. . . the hydrangeas are at peak . . .

. . . as are the fields of goldenrod . . .

. . . and the sedum.

I was surprised to see the columbines have bloomed again . . .


. . . as were some of the stella d'oro lillies!

Well, if some of the plants think it is still summer, I guess I can play along and mow the grass!

Sunday, September 15, 2013

Plaid Days

I took the red-eye back from Los Angeles.  It was nearly 90 degF and sunny every day I was there.  When I got off the plane back home, I was greeted with cool weather.  The toll keeper at the airport parking lot told me that there were flurries early that morning.

We started the pellet stove this morning to take the chill out of the house. I brewed a pot of coffee and enjoyed it with some pumpkin and spice creamer.

It is time to break out the plaid shirts.  I can feel the summer heat flowing away. I started to pull out the spent plants from the garden.  The tomato vines are withered.  I pulled out gallons of drops - most were starting to rot.  It was a bumper crop this year.  A few drops are not a concern.  We are still getting zucchini, peppers, and green beans.  The cool weather plants are coming strong - the spinach, collards and arugula.  The bees are furiously buzzing around the basil plants.  The shortening days mean they have to work even harder to get ready for winter.

I used four pallets to make a bin for the garden waste.  I don't like to put anything with seeds and heavy roots into the compost bins as the seeds seem to return the next year.  With the larger garden we started this year, the new bin will get full very quickly.

The leaves are starting to fall from the trees. The trees are starting to look tired - the vibrant green of summer is getting ready to change.  It won't be long before autumn starts - next week as the calendar predicts.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

The Coming Fall

The goldenrod is in full bloom now.  Fall will be here soon.  We have been busy with end of season activities and keeping up with the garden.  We have had a bumper crop this year.  Our freezers are near bursting.  We have carrots, peppers, green beans, snow peas, corn and tomatoes in the freezer.  Now we are in the last throws of canning.  Lots of jars of pickles, hot sauce, cherry peppers, and tomato sauce.

We have had to resort to using buckets to collect the tomatoes.  We had a frost advisory late in the week and are scrambling to keep up with the harvest.

Our counters are full of tomatoes.  Today we made a gallon of marinara.

I also put up a a few pints of basil pesto.  I'll do a few more pints next weekend and we'll make more sauce,

The zucchini are slowing down, and we are near the end of the tomato picking.  I still have to put up a few more jars of cherry peppers, and make some dilly beans.

We have some fall spinach, arugula and collards waiting for us.  I'll start to turn the beds over for next year.  The quiet times will be coming soon.