Cimicifuga ramosa ‘James Compton’ still looking magnificent

Our days are shifting now. The nursery will remain open for just a few more days and then it’s by appointment through the month of October. Each garden has its signs of decay and impending dormancy. The vegetable gardens are looking tired and we are finally ready to shift our daily eating habits from fresh green beans and yellow squash to roasted beets and potato leek soup. Knitting in the evenings are more likely and a long walk in the morning is possible. The sheep are still grazing, though it won’t be long before they are brought home from their summer pasture and will switch over to their winter diet of hay and grain. As of yet, we have not had to light the woodstove, but we know those cool mornings and nippy evenings are just ahead of us. We still have a large flock of meat birds to process in October (50 or so) and about 7 cords of firewood to finish splitting and stacking. I feel like I can take time to bake bread again and dye wool and make pumpkin butter without the feeling of urgency to get back outside and weed or mow or pot plants. A change in routine is good, I do declare!
This summer, we have had a wedding to pull off, a long visit from two little kiddos with tremendous (and delightful) energy, and a fast and furious and super busy nursery season. Yup, I’m tired. I’m feeling a bit whooped. So let the shift of this Fall season begin. Let the days grow shorter, and yes, a bit darker. I’m hoping that the steps I take don’t cover ground as quickly as they do during the hay days of summer. Let there be time to pause, to collect thoughts, to establish a quieter rhythm. It’s time. How are you all feeling? Ready to let go of summer or wanting it to linger a bit longer? I’d love to hear your thoughts on this melancholy transition from summer haze to fall crispness. In the meantime, with an intention to nurture a stillness of heart, I’ll mozy out to the gardens and start pulling onions for winter storage.

16 comments on “

  1. In Maine, summer is short and rushed that even those of us who don’t run a nursery feel busy. I can only imagine what it must be like for you. So enjoy those shorter days and take a little time to catch your breath. As for Clif and me…we are getting ready to publish our second book, “Library Lost.” No rest for us at all. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • I was in the village yesterday ( Liberty) and all the merchants ( the very few) down there were saying “where has the summer gone, it flew by!” Yes, it did indeed! Sounds like you and Cliff still have roads to travel and lots of work to do. Best of luck and congratulations on the second book!!! Terrific!

  2. Love the change of seasons! although as always, I’m a bit discouraged that I didn’t get as much done in the gardens as hoped. Time for hunkering down and bringing out all those beautiful fabrics and fibers to work with…

    • Hello Paula,I’m not sure there is ever enough time to do all that we need or want, it definitely feels that way. Time gets eaten up, especially during the summer months. this year with all the extra events, I feel a bit more worn than usual. So, most certainly, out comes the fabric and fiber to help sooth my soul! Best to you, Paula!

  3. Once the equinox passes, I let go of summer, but the days don’t seem to be in a rush to cool off this year. The shorter days do set me to hibernating. I guess I’m ready for the slower pace of winter. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Hello Eliza, Yes, a slower pace is just what I need. The gardens are still putting out some veggies and we still have the fall tasks, but all these things are done without the ‘summer frenzy’. Fall is for finding my breath…much needed at this point. Happy days to you, Eliza!

  4. As much as I like autumn, I could have gotten a bit more out of summer. It seemed so mild and quick this year. It got warm at the end, but then fizzled out. It will still be warm for a while, but nights are cool enough to color the trees. I do not know how things are at the nursery right now because I am not there. Without rain, irrigation must continue. That is no fun. doing it gives one more of an appreciation for rain and autumn.

    • Hi Tony, Wishing away time doesn’t seem all too sensible and I shouldn’t be so glad to see the summer come to a halt, but this year felt a bit like a mad dash. The cooler days and the fall rain is a blessing to the plants here… and to me. Work doesn’t end yet and there is still lots of garden and nursery chores to tend, but the pace slows and my days feel less harried. Of course, the added events like company and a wedding did add fuel to an already busy time of year. This post reflects a weary heart at the moment and I am hoping that autumn helps to restore some balance!

  5. I’m always conflicted this time of year. I’m still working 2-4 hours a day getting the beds cleaned up, things moved around (that’s what gardeners do, right?), and putting things away. As much as I admire beautiful red, gold and orange leaves, I absolutely hate the massive hours required to clean those beauties up when they fall. We have a lot of old, huge trees which translates to a lot of leaves to be moved. People talk about how much they love fall, and all I visualize is a rake, leaf bags, and a full truck bed several times over. ๐Ÿ™‚

    • Hi Judy, Do you keep your leaves and use them for mulch? Yes, the fallen leaves in the beds do add another task to the season, lots of raking and piling for sure. We dump them all into a huge pile and let them sit over the winter. By spring they have broken down some and we then run over them with a mower ( bag mower) to chop them up for mulch. Great nutrition for the plants, especially the woodland plants we grow! I think my head is tired and I count on fall being a little less demanding. Loved the big wedding event ( so, so special) but it took the last bit of energy I had in my sail! Hope the leaves in New Hampshire don’t fall too fast and furious! Best to you, Judy!

  6. I am glad things are slowing down a bit for you! And I am sure you feel a bit exhausted, itโ€™s been a busy summer! I am impressed with your fortitude at no fires! We have had the pellet stove on several times in the evening and a morning or two. Chance of frost tonight… I hope not!

    • I think the fortitude for no fires is called stubbornness! So glad to have the knitting needles out and clicking and soon hope to get the kettle out for dyeing. Still have this springs fleeces to tackle!! Hope we get to see each other sometime this fall or winter ( if travel allows). Would be nice to have another day of crafting…and chatting!

      • I have been stubborn about that many times, but this year I just decided to not be chilly! Of course it is easier to turn a pellet stove on and off as needed. Once you light the wood stove it is ON!

        I would love to see you and spend some time crafting and chatting. My sister recently made it up to the nursery from Portland, said your husband was so nice to work with but you werenโ€™t there. She loved the place and will be back. ๐Ÿ˜‰

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