Common Sense Home Good News Letter 9/10/23

“The change of season whispered at the senses, quiet, but impossible to ignore. Each day the sunset crept earlier, and the dew on the morning grass held the chill of the longer nights.

The air smelled different – ripe fruit perfumed the gardens and orchards, fallen leaves leant a musty odor. The pitch of the leaves in the trees changed, too, as life faded from them, from a rustle to a crackle.”

As the old joke goes, the temperature dropped this week like it saw a state trooper, from highs in the 90s to barely hitting 60. The heat loving garden plants reacted with indignation, while the cool weather crops practically sighed in relief.

We’re still well below average on precipitation for the season, and the pond levels show it. Both ponds are several feet below normal levels. The youngest members of the duck patrol spend so much time in the big pond that they nibbled most of the vegetation from the near end. This year’s “babies” are almost full grown now, and they’ve been packing away the feed to bulk up before cool temps are here to stay.

The blackberries and ​blueberries​ have wrapped up, and the fall raspberries are starting to trickle in. ​Fall Gold raspberries​ are better than candy for fresh eating, but I do like to use the reds in cooking and preserving. ​Elderberries​ and ​aronia berries​ are ready, too, and, cantaloupes, grapes, apples, and Asian pears. (It’s going to be a busy week. You can share your favorite recipes for any of these, if you are so inclined, by replying to this email.)

An old friend came to visit last weekend, and we had a nice time visiting. The boys tackled homemade egg rolls for the first time, and they were delicious.

Grandma and grandpa came out yesterday to see the progress on the outbuilding. It’s been a bumpy summer for them, so this is the first time they’ve been able to see it. It was good to have them visit, and restock them with fresh goodies from the homestead. Grandma got a kick out of the fluffy headed Polish rooster, ​Chookini​.

The day has slipped away again, so I’d best sign off.

All our best to you and yours,

Laurie (and August IV, August V, and Duncan)

This week’s featured articles…

It’s almost time to gather evening primrose seeds and roots. We share ​how to identify and use common evening primrose​.

​Homemade ketchup​ is a good recipe to make with end of season tomatoes, as the long simmer time improves the flavor that isn’t as strong due to cooler temps. If you’re still dealing with heat, you can also freeze your tomatoes and make it during the winter.

How do you find room to stock up at harvest time, or store emergency goods, when space is tight? We ​share ideas for finding room for storage – and how to make sure that storage stays safe and in good condition​.

Popular on Instagram – ​outbuilding in progress​ and ​accidental gardening​.

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