Is it September already? Yes, yes it is…Jeri is back in the classroom and the kids are being rousted from their beds five days per week! August brought September-like weather, and September is (so far) quite August-like. Given the vacillating weather conditions we are accustomed to in the North Country, nothing is to be taken for granted. All we’re counting are the days we hope to have before the temperatures drop off and opportunities for our warm-weather projects dry up. At the top of my chore list are painting, pointing, tomato picking, and anything else that requires a certain amount of heat. Too many years hoping my paint thaws and dries in the follow day’s sun, I suppose! Notwithstanding the pressure of dropping temperatures, there is always a benefit: we have a little more time to rest with the sun setting so much earlier.
With less light, our ears work harder. The other night, the wind was gusting in powerful waves through the treetops making a formidable presence. It reminded me a bit of the ocean crashing in at shore—the push and pull of nature ebbing and flowing over the earth. These same winds tore down a mature black walnut tree and limbs of several others a couple of weeks ago. Brutal pruning. As Mother Nature likes it, these powerful moments have been punctuated with just enough sunshine to create some beautiful and dramatic landscapes.
Although the summer has been wetter and cooler than what we expected, the weather is welcome. Not great for tomato harvests, and the apple yields are significantly lighter than last year, but suitable for Paul’s second planting of beets, spinach and other cool-loving crops. Jeri has been indulging us with creations from the garden. My favorite summer dish is her beet rosti, which never fails to delight. The garlic harvest is complete, and we’re eating a lot of everything else: beans, chard, cukes, lettuce (thank you, Peytons!), tomatoes, basil and corn. Summer is a season of plenty, and this is definitely harvest time for the last wave of crops.
Harvest also means it’s time for the fabulous Harvest Festival in Sharon Springs, NY, scheduled this year for the weekend of September 20-21st. Tapatree is preparing to stock a booth full of seasonal syrups to help you fill your larders for winter… If you have not been, Sharon Springs is experiencing quite a renaissance as the direct result of an inspired community healthily dosed with unflagging optimism and pure grit—a dynamic tonic wherever it presents itself. The festival itself is wonderful—chock full of diverse, talented craftspeople and goodwill. Furthermore, any festival where you can leave with a bottle of delicious handcrafted, seasonal syrup must be quite a magical event, right? (Shameless self-promotion?) Come—you will leave with full hands and hearts.
Relish these last balmy, green days of summer our friends—we certainly are!