The last post I made, it was just barely September and the humid Serotinal days were carrying Summer’s legacy while hinting at the Fall.
Now a month and a half later, we’ll see our first frost soon and those long hot days just don’t open up like they used to. The true Fall season is over North Carolina and all the activities that it demands.
Most birds and mammals are active out looking for the fruits of Summer’s sun and heat and rain. Whitetail Bucks are beginning to rut if they haven’t already started (some call the second Full Moon after the Equinox the Rutting Moon – but that will be on November 17th so that may be too late). With this, the shots and roadside trucks signal the Hunting seasons’ approach and slow opening. The songs of the Cicadas and Katydids are gone – leaving only the Crickets, Trigs, Meadow Katydids and the other hardier species. All this accompanies our daily changes as the days get shorter and our diets (ideally) transform and expand for the oncoming Winter.
More fresh root crops are being pulled along with the stored potatoes and sweet potatoes of Summer. Cover crops are tucking in the beds after the exhausted deaths of most other plants. We’re mowing less and focusing more as work is squared away while the weather is still warm.
The leaves reveal their true colors as the chlorophyll recedes and fall away to show the real structure of the tree. It’s a time to change and step back and reassess how you are and what you are doing. It seems a better time to come together as a community and a family. Churches, Fire Departments, and other groups cook barbecue, brunswick stew, chicken and dumplings. State and County Fairs run to showcase the Summer’s bounty (and deep-fried Snickers) in a ritual that ties us together.
All around our area there is plenty to do and get involved with:
The North Carolina State Fair is open everyday until October 27th from 8:00 AM to Midnight. http://www.ncstatefair.org/2013/index.htm
Doug Jones is hosting a sold-out On-Farm Pepper Production Workshop at the Piedmont Biofarm on October 29th and another (that is still open) on November 7th from 2:00 to 5:00 PM. http://growingsmallfarms.ces.ncsu.edu/event/20245679/onfarm-pepper-production-workshop/
The Carolina Farm Stewardship Association is holding its annual Sustainable Agriculture Conference in Durham on November 15th through 17th. http://www.carolinafarmstewards.org/sac/
(On a related note) Backyard Bow Pro is a non-profit charity that seeks to connect hunters with landowners to deliver harvested meat to food pantries and other providers of food to those in need. It is an excellent opportunity to manage deer populations around farms and provide food to food insecure individuals. http://www.nohungrypeople.org/