As the chiller nights set in and the rains begin falling, I start getting this yearning to make big pots of soup, drink some strong dark beers, and hole up inside our little house. It’s been looking like my garden feels the same way in general. I never even bothered picking the corn since it got such a late start, but I noticed the chickens finally made use of it, trampling over the stalks and devouring the kernels. The beans are bursting at the seams which means I need to get out there and harvest the seeds for next year. Basically, the season was pretty much over in my mind.

It still is, but I was quite surprised to see so many signs of life out there the other day. Our echinacea plant finally decided to bloom. Maybe it was just busy all summer digging some roots and gathering some energy for this magnificent show it is putting on. I was floored though at how many bees I saw on it! I counted 15 at one time, while trying to balance a cup of coffee in one hand and a phone call to a friend in the other. The picture to the right shows a couple buzzing around, but this is probably 1/8 of the whole plant.

It also makes me feel a little guilty that these poor bees will be abandoned in a couple weeks when everything truly does shut down for the winter. My grandfather makes these wooden bee houses, of sorts, that they can overwinter in. It is basically a wooden board with holes dug into it at various depths. Maybe I will get a last spurt of energy myself and build one to house the little guys? Something on my list of things to research still, since I know certain bees are losing their habitat. I’m not sure if this overwintering system helps these guys. Do you know?

I also saw tons of lovely spider webs woven through the branches of my fruit trees. The light was just perfect and I am glad someone/thing can be getting some good use out of the space as we humans retreat further inside.

The next week or so takes me out of town, so I might be posting less frequently. Hope you’re staying warm somewhere!

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Written by Renee Wilkinson