I welcome the relief that comes about with these cooler temperatures.
A few flies gathered on the screen door long enough to remind me of the good old days, like these. Maybe they want in this hot kitchen or smelled the homemade barbeque resting in the slow cooker. Could be those nosey flying insects did not like the spray or heard me say things about their ancestors that were not kind. There is no room in the little blue house at the end of the road for unwanted quests such as them.
Working outside today is easier for a body to deal with, especially mine. I poop out at hot yard work parties.
The grounds are looking better. Since Paul Baby fixed the lawn equipment, I am showing my gratitude, big time.
The garden has taken a beating this growing season, but there is and will be a kaleidoscope of bounty to harvest, regardless.
Several of my friends have shared their produce with us as well. We appreciate their generosity.
We visit roadside stands at this time of the year, especially in September and early October. It is nice to hear the voice of harvest time and take in the sweetness of success. It is good to see gardeners and produce handlers beam with pride as he, she or they guides me through the inventory, while I decide.
Sometimes, vendors offer -up a sip or two of apple cider. I dearly love the drink, but unfortunately, cider is a tad hard on my tank. I found that out early on, two miles walking distance from home. I have not sampled over a jigger's worth at a time since.
Amish made, jellies, jams, preserves and butters, reminds me of those batches prepared by my mother on the coal stove.
All are delicious served on bread with butter or they marry well with peanut butter. Either way, we try each of them at least once. I like to add the results my own efforts to the winter larder as well.
This year's harvest of concord grapes exceeded my expectations. The few existing vines that I transplanted during my move from North Alabama Street twenty-three years ago woke up from a time out and shined for me. The surgery the vines underwent in March, a couple of years ago was just what the doctor ordered.
Sooner than later, Paul is getting the jelly that he loves best!
Japanese beetles turned the large leaves into brown colored lace, but this grape grower learned the fruit is not the target in this case. They stop short at riddling the leaves.
Bell pepper plants are producing well this year. I placed milk crates beside them to keep the deer away from their blooms. Animals dislike things to bump against in the night.
My tomato plants are large and healthy. Blight has not moved in on them yet. They are loaded with tomatoes, of average size, very different from the sizable beauty raised in the vegetable garden of Dick and Wanda Hull of Reelsville.
I can attest the Hulls know what they are doing. I have enjoyed healthy homegrown vegetables from the generous couple's gardens including tomatoes, possibly from the same vine.
The plant that produced the prized tomato that Wanda Hull displayed for the readership of The Brazil Times came from a plant purchased at my cousin, Tom's place of business - Lynch's Farm Market.
Imagine that! I planted seed starts and volunteers, make do was not the best route to take.
I am waiting on my sweet corn that is nearing maturity. I know I planted later than usual, but it is going to make it.
In 1993, Dad's friend, poultry and wild game customer, Mr. Nate Tintine came down to our place from Indianapolis and brought my father a jar of "sweet corn." He said, "Mr. Lynch I saved these golden kernels, on top of the cabinet, in this glass canning jug for several years now. I want you to drop a few rows of them to see what happens. I guarantee them babies will grow."
The timing was right. Dad ran the hand plow through the freshly tilled north garden just beyond the potato patch that he planted weeks earlier. We dropped the dried kernels and covered them up. In no time, the seed corn germinated and what happened in slightly crooked rows proved old' Nate right, no doubt about it. Dad laughed and remarked; maybe "Mr. Nate" could have stretched the age of that fast growing corn seed as he did his age."
The green as grass corn stalks grew and grew with vigor, arms stretched wide, touching blade to blade, side to side. In no time, it seemed. Ears formed and silks shined against the hot summer's sun. Wild canaries' bugs and bees feasted on the domes of the giant stalks. Soon it was time to pull back the husk of a test ear and Dad did. The "sweet corn" was ready to shuck and we did.
One day in early August of that year, we shucked four or five long rows of the best "field" corn that we ever had the pleasure to grow and eat. The ends of the fully filled out golden ears rested beyond the edges of the plates and the butter dripped from our chins. We were in hog heaven thanks to that nice old gentleman. Dad loved the corn that Nate guaranteed would grow and even found use for the cobs.
Come hunting and trapping seasons of that year we brought in the harvest of bounty. Nate carried home carcasses of possum and coon and a chicken or two--no charge, just because.
The grins were ear to ear, as I recall, but the fulfillment of promises made by those fellows that day did not make it to another growing or hunting season.
My father was terminally ill and passed away the following spring around planting time.
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