As the fall days turn brisk there is nothing better than coming into the house from the outdoors to the luscious aroma of a steaming crock pot full of fall culinary delights.
A fresh pheasant breast tucked between the halves of a sweet dumpling squash will excite most appetites. With the meat seasoned with sage, pepper, and thyme and resting upon carrots, onions, and potatoes, all fresh from the garden, the evening’s dining is complete with little to do but set plates and dig in.
No pictures of yesterday’s colors, which were mostly white. Snow covered us and there is plenty of time ahead to cover the white time of year.
Today the usual colors of fall again showed through as the snow melted. Perhaps the most dominant shades this fall are the color of water and mature crops that haven’t been harvested because of all the water. We surely need a break in the weather as each day brings less probability of warm, dry days. Again I think back to the research I did on the book “God in a God-Forsaken Land.” I found that during the 1870s weather patterns were very similar to present conditions. During those years few crops were planted and harvested in this area.
In the past three weeks I have recorded 10.5 inches of rainfall. With our average yearly rainfall at about 26 inches, the rainfall this summer and fall have been historic. Everything is still very green as I mowed my lawn for about the 22nd time this season. The fields that could not be planted this spring because of saturated soil, now are greening up as most have been planted to cover crops to protect the soil for the winter. On the subject of water, there is still some fine fall fishing to be enjoyed and we hope the weather holds a long, dry “Indian Summer” to harvest crops and finish other outdoor work.
In the greenhouses, we are moving perennial plants out to the cold frames to be wintered until next spring. Greenhouse repairs and construction continue as the weather allows.
Gene R. Stark
A teacher, farmer, trapper, and greenhouse grower. He writes about the outdoors and the people and culture of rural America..