You guessed it; life is continuing to be … full. I know I’m more than overdue for an update.
I have a mixed relationship with fall. I live for the heat and abundance of the summer. I’m one of those annoying cold-all-the-time-skinny women, and in this maritime climate, I don’t get days very often when I’m willing to leave the house without a sweater. So when the real heat hits, I rejoice, and then I mourn its passing painfully as the days get noticeably shorter.
Once I accept that fall is truly here, though, I can acknowledge and celebrate its beauty.
And fall has lots to offer! The summer harvest still trucks along, even though at this point I’m pretty sick of eating the tomatoes, beans, and cucumbers that have been our mainstay now for 3 or so months. Their harvest has been good, though, and there are jars of sauce and pickles in the pantry, as well as bags of frozen whole tomatoes and blanched beans in the freezer.
As with the rest of the year, I’m looking forward to the transition into the next crops: fall carrots, chard, kale, leeks, and salads. Right now, those precious crops are getting as big as I can get them before the weather really turns; I’m hiding them under row cover to give them as much warmth as I can.
Now the fun begins with what to do with them all for the months to come! The freezer is full of berries, but those will mostly become jam, so the apples are really our only homegrown fruit crop until the rhubarb pokes its big fronds up in the spring. I see many pies and perhaps a dehydrator in our future…. not sure yet about applesauce.
Sadly, it looks like I’ll be headed to the farm or to the store for my fall cabbages and brussel sprouts. Though my winter leeks look good, yet again I just don’t think I got these brassicas in the ground early enough. 😦 I also don’t think this bed is getting enough sun in the summer–so there are some shrubs and trees that I’m eyeing dangerously! Note the bounteous weeds and make-shift chicken proofing in the photo below…
It’s an in-between time, this autumn season. The Skipper and I start to turn our attention inside, to the house projects we might get done over the winter. We start the fall clean-up outside, which enables us to see the bones of the garden that had disappeared in all the lush summer growth, and we start to strategize about which projects might get tackled before next summer. On the list for this year, inside and out: a woodstove (hurray!), painting and decorating my office, reconfiguring and adding some new veggie beds (which may mean taking down some trees–more another day!), siding the Skipper’s small shop. There are always more projects than we can tackle in a year, but those feel like the top contenders at the moment!
But in the midst of all this planning and reflecting on what worked and what didn’t, there is still bounty coming in that needs dealing with!