It’s November

I find it hard to believe that spring has come and gone, summer came and went, and fall is already on the downward slope of getting us ready for winter. My calendar tells me that by the time this column reaches you, we will be five days into November. It seems to me that time flies faster as one racks up the numbers that categorizes one as getting older. But, as the saying goes, “time marches onward.”

This past week we had both heavy rains and strong winds, wiping completely the beautiful colours from our surrounding forests. Even the low growing sumac’s had their massive red blotches of foliage stripped naked. The only tree that seems to challenge the inclement weather is the tamarack, the only deciduous coniferous, which turns from green to an impressive yellow before dropping its many needles late in the fall.

This past week, too, the large flock of bluebirds that were hanging around our barn enjoying the large number of flies that gathered around the windows have left us. Following on their tail was a rather impressive flock of robins that showed up, and almost instantly stripped our patch of late ripening ever-bearing raspberries. An hour after they showed up, they were gone, having taken all ripening fruit with them.

One dull, heavy cloud-laden day, along about 4pm, I thought I was losing my eyesight, or perhaps going bonkers, whichever comes first. But it turned out that all was well. The wind had dropped and the sun peeked out, and as I looked up the fence-row at two wild apple trees, which had survived the previous year’s tornado, one of the tree’s branches, heavy laden with apples, kept bouncing up and down.

At first I thought it likely to be an old buck coon, or perhaps an over-weight lazy porcupine chowing down on the bright yellow ripening fruit, but I was wrong. What my eyes finally focused on was three deer which were actually rearing up to reach the fruit. They were obviously enjoying a mid-afternoon snack, far away from the hunters that roamed through the bush.

This past week, too, I spent several hours harvesting our carrots, potatoes and popcorn. Still to come in are the beets and the turnips. We are a bit late doing this, as we  planted a little later than we should have in the spring, and thought the extra time would give them time to properly develop, but the jury is still out on whether that was a success or not.

The fact is I was too busy moving, so the weeds became an unfair challenge as well.

Nevertheless, we still have quite a lot of good, pesticide-free chomping, ready to be stored for winter use in our fruit cellar. Next year we will, no doubt, do better.

Take care, ‘cause we care.



Barrie Hopkins