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Fall is definitely in the air here in Vermont. The trees are showing what’s left of their yellow, orange and red selves. It’s definitely “putting by” season. We had a definite frost/freeze last night and it’s a good thing that I spent a few days gathering what was left in the garden. However, with the harvest coming the processing, the part that sounds good but is so time consuming. As I type this, celery leaves are drying in the dehydrator, second batch. The first batch of those and a jar of sun dried cherry tomatoes are already stored away. Basil has been pureed with olive oil and frozen into tablespoon size portions to mix in soups or pasta sauces. Potatoes are dug and in the shed, drying so they are easier to dust the dirt from before moving into the basement for storage. The onions, which were picked several weeks ago, are there too, now ready to put by in the basement for fall and winter usage.

A very pleasant surprise were the volunteer tomatillos that were growing in the garden. I was convinced that they would not be ready to harvest, but pleasantly surprised to gather a large basketful, weighing in close to 8 pounds. Some of them have already been roasted with said onions and peppers for a green salsa.

The voles commandeered most of the beet crop but I was able to gather a handful to enjoy. They don’t seem fond of the carrots, but I’m sure that their appetites will change as food becomes scarcer since I’ve harvested most everything else.

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Today was a peppery kind of day. I bought a bushel of sweet peppers at the farmer’s market today and combined it with some other delicious pasilla peppers from Alchemy Gardens. I added to that peppers from my CSA at Evening Song Farm and my own poblano peppers. What does one do with all those peppers?

First, I washed seeded and cut up a bunch to freeze for later in the winter, when we need some homegrown peppers. These will remind us of the warm weather when gardening is but a dream.

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Then I roasted a whole lot of the peppers. Some of them were fixed with garlic and extra virgin olive oil. We will have these with some homemade bread from the farmer’s market for dinner tonight.

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Finally, I took some of the roasted peppers and canned them for use later on, much like you would buy in the store. These will be added to pasta or soup, or some other goodies in the coming weeks.

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To help myself and everyone else get through these hot days….

One of the things that I enjoy the most about living here year-round is the chance to actually see the seasons change right before my very eyes. When we were traveling back and forth on weekends, we had snapshots of the different seasons, spring and its mud, winter and its snow and ice, summer and its green splendor and fall with its breathtaking foliage. Now, I get to actually see the seasons morphing, one into the next, little changes that are significant yet often overlooked unless you’re here watching. I notice the small things, leaves on one tree starting to change, the treescape taking on just a twinge of color, not enough to call it “fall foliage” but enough to notice that a new season is upon us.

Autumn is one of my favorite seasons. I love the cool, crisp air in the mornings and  evenings and the warm but not too hot, days. I enjoy the fact that I can walk by an apple tree and grab a snack that tastes so much fresher than anything that a store can offer me. I love the rainfall of pretty colored leaves that float to and fro on the wind before settling onto the still green grass of my lawn.

It won’t be long before the air holds whiffs of smoke from woodstoves or burning leaves. I enjoy the abundance of vegetables that I find every time I look into my garden and the incredible ease of going out on the patio to pick fresh herbs to season dinner or salad to compliment it.

Autumn signals the harvest and the start of the school year, the season of taking stock of what’s important; taking stock of what blessings Mother Nature has bestowed upon the fields and the gardens and realizing just how lucky we are to live in this area with an abundance of fresh fruit and vegetables feet from our own home.

And another great thing about Autumn….

Winter is not far behind…… 🙂

Evilwife on the move

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