Saturday, September 29, 2012

The first glimpse of Fall.....

Here at the roost we have been teased with Autumn's arrival for some time. Two giant volunteer pumpkin plants decided to grow out of the compost bin and on the side of our brick patio, sprawling across the entire yard. Where the heck did these come from??!??

One of the plants has been producing miniature pumpkins for a while now, and I have been eager to cut and display them. The other has one beautiful larger pumpkin forming with a rich pinky orange color and green streaks.

At first I was upset that all we were getting were pathetic baby pumpkins and not something more practical like sugar pie or larger pumpkins for eating, but I have to admit the mini pumpkins are just the cutest things! I decided to display them on my mantel and throughout the house for some early fall decor in the house and a reminder that autumn is on its way.

These squash plants, in comparison to our others, have done so well that BJ and I joked that next summer we are simply throwing seed out into the yard and waiting to see what grows, rather than fooling with the hard work of prepping the raised beds only to have most of our squash die or be consumed by squash bugs or mildew. A friend of mine said that catnip is supposed to deter squash bugs, so next year we will be growing catnip and spreading the cuttings all around our squash plants.

How has your squash fared? Isn't it amazing how long this nutritious vegetable lasts when kept cool? If something catastrophic happened and we were all short on food--as long as we have squash--we will be well-fed for some time. Native Americans knew this and cultivated squash of all kinds. Squash and pumpkins, in particular, were an extremely important staple in the early Colonial diet, sustaining families through the harsh winters.

Hope you are enjoying the beautiful fall weather and first glimpses or tastes of Autumn in your home!

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