Cool Mornings and Sunny Days Bring Fall Colors

| 9/30/2014 10:01:00 AM

Ginnie BakerThe shorter days and the cool mornings are really bringing out the fall colors in the trees here in the Valley. This is a beautiful time of year. I hope the weather will hold and the trees will have a chance to turn their wonderful colors before the leaves fall.

There are definite signs that the cold weather is on the way. I like to watch the wildlife as the season’s change, especially when cold weather is looming. Today, I saw the first woolly bear! It seems very early for those guys to be looking for a place to hibernate for the winter.

woolly bear caterpillar1I never remember what the brown band means, whether it’s thick or thin, but this what Wikipedia has to say:

Folklore of the eastern United States and Canada holds that the relative amounts of brown and black on the skin of a Woolly Bear caterpillar (commonly abundant in the fall) are an indication of the severity of the coming winter. It is believed that if a Woolly Bear caterpillar's brown stripe is thick, the winter weather will be mild and if the brown stripe is narrow, the winter will be severe. In reality, hatchlings from the same clutch of eggs can display considerable variation in their color distribution, and the brown band tends to grow with age; if there is any truth to the tale, it is highly speculative.[5]

The yellow jackets and hornets are also trying to find ways into the house. I have to be careful when I have the inside doors open because they will find the smallest crack and end up in the house.

A Mennonite friend has bee hives and he told me that they bees were swarming … something very unusual for this time of year. He and his wife have a bulk food store and deli that I visit regularly and he has his honey for sale at the store. It’s a beautiful color and is so good!

10/1/2014 8:28:26 AM

Ginnie, summer is definitely over here in Nebraska as well. The gardens are totally done. Usually, tomatoes will hang on through October but this year the tomato crop was very limited by the cooler than normal weather and just quit producing by the middle of September. All the signs of a coming harsh Winter are starting to show themselves. Major leaf drop is happening which is about a month early. I'm not sure what we are in for this Winter but I'm thinking it's not mild. Stormie, my snow blower, is in the shop getting some TLC in preparation of the coming weather. I still have a lot of clean up and not much time left to get it done. Rain here has been a big factor for delaying garden clean up. ***** Have a great cool morning and sunny day.

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