Frost Expected


I harvested almost everything from the garden this past weekend.  Beets, squash and onions are stored in the barn to dry.  They can remain in the barn until the nights are consistently in the mid-twenties.  One or two nights will not drain all the summer warmth from the building.

My houseplants have summered outside for years.  The brighter light and humidity outdoors always gives them a growth spurt.  The first frost is expected tonight, in the  second week in October,  later this year than usual.  The first frost has historically occurred at the end of September in this location.  My garden has been located in Agricultural Zone 4 as long as I can remember.  I haven’t moved, but the weather is warmer and this is now listed as  Zone 5, with a longer growing season.

I planned to bring the remaining house plants inside last evening, but it rained again and  the pots were covered with mud and wet leaves.  Early dark and a 40 degree cold rain encouraged an early finish to the task.  I covered the remaining pots this evening and hope they survive tonight’s frost.

Completing this task at a more leisurely pace is appealing.  When I retire I’ll spend daylight hours clearing the garden.

Peppered Peace

I’m not a religious person, but come from a long line of God-fearing folks, and often misquote, or half remember Bible verses.  This  year my bell pepper crop is outstanding.  I harvested a five-gallon bucket of huge green and red peppers and spent several hours chopping them for the freezer.  It seems only right to sit a few minutes on the porch with a glass of cabernet to toast my garden’s largess.  It’s a very quiet evening without a hint of wind.

Philippians 4:7 “And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus (I only  remembered part of this and looked it up.)  However, a  misquote popped into my head and won’t leave me alone. “Peace that peppers understanding.”  Most people misunderstand half the messages they hear.

The idea of peppered peace fits our world.  In the past year, there’s been a murder every other hour in Chicago.  The US has been bogged down in war in Afghanistan for more than 10 years, having learned nothing from Vietnam, except not to draft people.

It feels like a war zone at my place of work.  People are layed-off, fired outright, or, if lucky, given a chance to resign or retire with dignity. The targeted folks are hurt and angry.  The injured randomly fire vocal tirades toward those of us who have no power to change anything, leaving us with peppered understanding, and  little peace.

I began this blog before the mass killing in Las Vegas. To continue and follow my analogy, the killer peppered the crowd with rapid-firing bullets, murdering and injuring as many as he could.  People search for an understandable motive, and pray for the victims.  Our society must move beyond this predictable response and make actual changes in the legal system. Do we, as a nation, have the collective will to resist gun lobbyist?