There’s snow on the mountains, about a foot or so on Kootenay Pass I hear, this feels early, but maybe I’m just not quite ready for the onslaught. We are in the midst of harvest here in the Kootenays. Our house is full of stored, canned, ready to can, and dehydrated fruit and vegetables. The dehydrator is running as I write, Italian plums at the moment. There is popcorn spread out over the kitchen counter and boxes of apples everywhere. Downstairs, one has to be careful to navigate between the bags of wheat and oats, the garlic, summer and winter squash, pumpkins, potatoes, tomatoes, and hundreds of canned goods. Out in the garden, the only crops still in the garden are beets, carrots and rutabaga which are relatively frost hardy.
Last night at 10pm after our weekend away, we harvested all the squash and pumpkins, and some green tomatoes by moonlight. This morning I began the process of turning-under and preparing the beds for mulching and a dose of calcium. Before the ground freezes, well plant our soft-neck and hard-neck garlic varieties and dig out most of the remaining vegetables.
Every season has it’s moments, but this is one of the best – I can see why Thanksgiving was such an important time for a holiday in previous generations. We will be picking up our grain in the next month or so, all the canning will be done, the house and garden will be winterized and the firewood pile will be growing. The transition to winter pounces on us with snow on the hills in early October, but there will be plenty of sunny days left before the snow really flies to enjoy the Fall colours and flavours.