While the days are still sunny and warm as we start the month of October, the cooler nights and misty mornings tell us it is now truly fall.
Here at Bella Luna, the leaves are turning brilliant shades of red, yellow and orange, and the local wildlife are beginning to stash provisions for winter: Squirrels are busy darting to and fro, carrying off acorns, walnuts and chestnuts—some as big as their heads—to bury. (Given the number of tree starts we find later, a good number of them must forget where they hide their bounty!) The blue jays are also busy squabbling with one another, battling the squirrels for acorns and hazelnuts.
The apple harvest has officially begun—the sweet, aromatic Macoun and crunchy, mildly-tart Liberty varieties in last week’s box were picked from our own orchard. We admit to snatching a few, fragrant and crunchy, right off the tree while walking past to do chores at the barn or in the garden. Soon, we will press and enjoy our first batch of fresh cider, and start cooking up homemade batches of applesauce and apple butter in the farm kitchen.
This week, we are planting garlic and other hardy vegetables to overwinter for early spring harvest, and stocking the pantry: potatoes, onions, garlic and winter squash are all curing, then going into storage, and we are also drying grapes for raisins to use this winter.
A special thank you to all of our weekly subscribers who were able to attend our first annual fall F&L farm gathering—-what a wonderful sunny afternoon spent together. We truly enjoyed meeting everyone and appreciated your feedback! For those of you who missed it, we will host another gathering in the spring during planting season. In the meantime, we hope you enjoy this most lovely October!