Brrr. I guess this past week’s weather could be called a wake-up call. I hauled out the long underwear and hats. Working outdoors has many challenges so preparations are in order. I really do not mind. It’s better than brutally hot and humid.

It’s finally time to get some of the gardens cut back and ready for their winter’s rest. I am always hesitant to do a complete cut. It seems a few hardy plants hang on even after a freeze — to wit alyssum, verbena, bacopa and even some geraniums. I’ve seen white alyssum thriving in Christmas window boxes.

One thing I really hate is the number of flies that get into the truck once the day warms. I’m a crazy person swatting at them while driving. Yikes. I heard an interview once with Dolly Parton. She told of both her and Loretta Lynn having the following memory. The family was too poor to afford screens on the windows. When company was coming the children ran around flapping towels to rid the house of flies. How I digress!

Last December I admired some outside holiday arrangements at the downtown Black Dog Bakery. They had some ornamental cabbages in with the Christmas greens. I ordered some seeds of Nagoya Mix from the HPS catalog and seeded them inside in April. They were completely unimpressive and bothered by bugs. Now they have come into their own. Violet took a photo of them along a perennial border. They are the only thing of color in the entire area. Guess I’ll grow more this year for my customers to enjoy if they decide to spend next fall here again.

Thanks to my daughter’s help, the hoop-house is greening up to give us food all winter. I bet I have hundreds of baby kale plants. They are reseeds from my year’s Red Russian plants. The mother plants are so ancient that their main stalks look like tree trunks.

Also, Black Seeded Simpson lettuce reseeded all over the paths. I moved it into an empty bed.

I am looking forward to spending a great deal of down time in the aforementioned hoop-house this winter. Hopefully, it will keep me in a positive mindset during Covid these next few months. It looks like we are in for a long haul given the latest uptick in cases.

As I often mention, I write this on Tuesday night. I have so much anxiety watching the election returns, I might pick up a trashy novel and go to bed.