Monday, October 15, 2012

A Change of Seasons

It's dark when I leave in the morning and close to dark when I arrive home in the evenings now.


The rain has been continuous for weeks, turning the lawn bright green and bringing a flush of fall mushrooms.


In the last week the temperatures have become quite cold though and we have had fires to warm the house and take the chill out of the air.


In the garden the asters have already lost their lustre and are closing up shop for the season.  We spent time last weekend pulling the last of the vegetables out of the garden.  Tomatoes, beans, peppers, zucchini were all pulled from the vines and brought indoors.

Green tomatoes brought indoors to ripen
Frost hasn't struck yet but it has been oh so close on more than a few nights.  I have been busy continuing to clean out vegetable beds.  Pulling plants and weeds, adding lime and compost to the beds and finally adding a protective layer of straw for the winter.


The straw will keep the cats out of the beds and keep the soil from blowing away in the winter wind.


All around us leaves have begun to turn colour and drift to the ground.  And off in the distance calls can be heard.  Searching the internet I finally discovered the source.


We have been hearing the second set of calls in the above video.  At first we thought it was children in the distance but it quickly became clear the sound was not human.  Perhaps there will be pups in the back field next year?



30 comments:

  1. Well listening to that video sure got the dog's attention!!! Yes...same sounds around here, and a coyote of late as well.

    Your garden looks put to bed and beautifully comfortable. zzz Till next year zzzzzzzzzzzz

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    1. We are fortunate here, the coyotes are further down the road and into the woods. While I like coyotes to a degree I have lost a cat to them before in BC and I'm glad I don't have to worry about that here. That straw sure is cozy, after layering that all on I felt like laying down in it myself.

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  2. Although I am sure you are way ahead of us in your fall because of your northern location, we have had the same conditions. No frost yet but very close. Your garden is lovely in autumn...what lovely green grass. I love the fox calls. Many years ago when I heard the Vixen's Call, I thought it was an injured animal. Later, of course, I learned it was a fox, and I began to look forward to hearing it.

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    1. Michelle, that went through my mind as well. Was it kids out in the woods (there is a road that cuts through back there), was an animal injured? But I remembered hearing this same sound last year too and it occurred to me to search mating season calls. The grass is unbelievable lately. We haven't cut it at all this summer and now in October we finally had to mow it was so thick.

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  3. The video made all my dogs bark! :o) I really like this post. It feels soothing - till my dogs freaked out! I like the way you put your garden beds to bed for the winter. I also really love the birdbath shot. Great photo!

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    1. LOL, I hadn't really thought about the dogs hearing that video. Funny, but our cats didn't react at all - and they were hearing the real thing! Thanks for the kind comment, there's something about this time of year, winding down, getting dark and quiet that I was trying to convey.

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  4. I like thinking about what fall must be like up where you are...there is something very sweet about all those mushrooms popping up into your lawn. And like Tammy, the image of you putting your vegetable beds to bed for the winter made me smile too. We are no where near needing a fire to take off the chill yet. We don't usually get our first real blast of cold until Thanksgiving, if then. Hard to say what 'normal' is anymore though. Thanks for sharing the enjoyment of your autumn days.

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    1. Cat, the last couple years October has been a great month here but this year it feels colder and crisper to me. As you say, what's 'normal' anymore? Taking it day by day but I sure do hope the snow holds off for a while yet.

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  5. I have never heard a fox before and neither has my dog Ben, he is just sitting here, turning his head from right to left, what is that? Wonderful, your beds look so neat and tidy, all ready for a winters nap.

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    1. Karen, it's funny, despite seeing foxes quite a bit here I never thought I had heard them either. When we listened to that video we realized there were a few sounds we had been hearing but weren't aware they were foxes.

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  6. Your garden looks cozy with its blanket of straw. A friend of ours has a fox den near their house. Sometimes the foxes play with their dogs. Several years they have had their young up in the yard. They have a big back yard that is open like a field. Fun to watch.

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    1. How great to see the foxes so close up. They come through our yard from time to time but they are incredibly shy of us.

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  7. You are so ready for fall! We had a real aberration, not just a frost a week ago but a hard killing freeze, and the annuals and hydrangeas are all black now, and some trees like redbuds and my buckeyes also blackened. We won't have anything that cold again for weeks... some frosts for sure until Dec., but no killing freezes like that. Love the foxes!

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    1. You're the second person I've heard of this happening to. There was a major freeze in Manitoba a few weeks back, very unusual. I'm surprised that we haven't had any frost yet, my hydrangeas keep putting out new blooms which is just short of utterly ridiculous this time of year.

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  8. I played the video for my cats. Those lazy things - they didn't flinch! haha I have never heard these sounds, so I guess they never have either. But I enjoyed listening. I love the look of your beds all snuggled down in their warm blankets. I hope your winter is not too harsh.

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    1. My cats don't react to it either! I sat on the porch with three cats and listened to those foxes and not a cat batted an eyelash. There's something satisfying about putting that last layer of straw on the beds, makes me feel like I can visibly see all the work that was completed.

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  9. That is quite the harvest of tomatoes and peppers that you have there Marguerite! I am wondering if I should follow your lead and put straw on my raised veggie beds. It might help keep the dogs out, and if all else fails, it might help to keep their paws a bit cleaner. We have seen foxes on occasion, but I have never heard that barking call before. Now I will know what animal it is, if I hear it.

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    1. Jennifer, the cats like to dig in the super soft dirt of the veggie beds and use it as a litter box. Once the plants are removed I have a hard time keeping them out. Something about the texture of straw doesn't appeal to them so I layer it on and they don't bother the beds.

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  10. Your fall garden prep looks great. Very manicured. I am surprised the straw will keep the cats out of the gardens. Hmm, we have fox around here, will have to listen better in the night to see if there are fox calls.

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    1. Hi Janet, see the response to Jennifer above - something about the texture of straw doesn't appeal to cats. Bark mulch however, beckons them like nobody's business.

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  11. Look at all those tomatoes! I brought mine in a couple of weeks ago just before a hard freeze hit. I've never had much luck with them ripening indoors, but I hope to have better luck this year. Yes, the seasons are definitely changing--I don't like the shorter evenings, though.

    We hear yipping in the distance in the evenings quite often, too; however, what we're hearing are coyotes. I think I'd rather have foxes.

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    1. Rose, I haven't had great luck with ripening tomatoes indoors either but it was worth a shot. I was going to lose them anyway so might as well try. The short days are so disappointing for me, I miss getting home in the evening and still having time to enjoy being outdoors.

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  12. Your garden looks comfy, well wrapped for it's long sleep. There are far too many dogs around here we never see or hear wildlife except for bears and hares.
    I used up the last of my fresh tomatoes a couple days ago. I made salsa verde with the green ones. There are always a few that refuse to ripen indoors.

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    1. Melanie, that's probably a good thing that the dogs keep the wildlife at bay. Otherwise you would have moose and deer eating all your veggies!

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  13. Rain helped here too greening up gardens and lawns. All in time for the big Fall cleanup too.

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    1. Isn't it funny - just when we're ready to pack it in and everything is lush and green. I've still got flowers blooming like crazy due to all the moisture.

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  14. It is always dark early and late here in Barbados, the sun comes up at 6 every morning and sets at 6 every evening, ALL YEAR LONG! When I was back in August, I sooo enjoyed being able to work in the garden till 8 or 9 in the evening, i miss that.

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    1. Oh my goodness that would make me crazy. I guess that's the trade off for all the tropical plants and gorgeous weather but those long days of summer just wouldn't seem the same to me.

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  15. I've been in denial about the shift in the seasons, but we finally have our first real rain on the way. Today I'll be scrambling to bring in the last of the tomatoes and peppers, and then prepping the beds for winter too. Of course, the question each year is what to do with all those green tomatoes! I think I might try a green tomato jam this year. What did you do with yours?

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    1. Green tomato chow is a pretty hot commodity in PEI. They sell green tomatoes specially in the grocery store here so people can make it. I haven't got a taste for relishes myself so I give away what I don't use. I have plenty of co-workers and neighbours who are quite thrilled to take fresh produce off my hands.

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