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Wednesday, November 3, 2010

My Favorite (Fall) Things

Cherie Langlois
Hobby Farms Contributing Editor

Calendula
Photo by Cherie Langlois
My calendulas are one of my favorite autumn delights.

Today was one of those perfect autumn days that takes my breath away: cool, crisp air; pale-golden beams of sunlight slanting through the firs; the scent of damp alder leaves wafting up as I raked them into piles to toss on the vegetable garden. With October already turned to November, I have a sneaking suspicion that winter will be here before we know it, so I decided to list the top five things I love best about fall—just because. 

1 . Calendula 
Of all the flowers in my garden, easy-to-grow Calendula seems to put on the longest and brightest autumn show. Just seeing those cheery, golden-and-orange blooms each day lifts my spirits—especially when the weather turns gloomy. Did you know that Calendula, also known as Pot Marigold, has been used medicinally for centuries and that the petals are edible? I’m planning to toss some in an arugula salad tonight. 

Woolly bear
Photo by Cherie Langlois
It's my mission this fall to save as many woolly bears (on of my favorite fall things) as possible from roadside squashes.

2. Woolly Bears 
I always look forward to seeing these pretty, black-and-orange caterpillars appear each fall as they go in search of places to hibernate. Sadly, the nonpest larvae of the Isabella Tiger moth often come to squishy ends while crossing roads, so my friend Trish and I have made it our autumn mission to rescue as many as possible on our morning walks. 

3. Vine Maples and Bigleaf Maples 
I love changing foliage of all kinds, but these two beautiful Northwest-native trees are my hands-down favorites. In good years, our Vine maples flame scarlet and the Bigleaf maples become gilded in gold. 

4. Pumpkins and Pumpkin Pie
Fields full of big, bright pumpkins and excited kids running about trying to pick the perfect one … or two … or three. The heavenly scent and spiced-sweet taste of pumpkin pie. These are definitely a few of my favorite fall things. What isn’t:  When not a single one of my own homegrown pumpkins turns orange!

5. Fall Crafting Season
Although I love long, fine summer days spent out of doors until the sun sets, I also enjoy this time of year, when darkness descends and nudges us inside at an earlier (but not too early) hour.  With the holidays fast approaching at the same time, it gives me the perfect excuse to break out my knitting, rug hooking or some other crafty indoor pursuit and channel my creative side.      

So, what are your favorite fall things?

~ Cherie

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My Favorite (Fall) Things

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Reader Comments
To some, it could only be a dream. Me?...I feel so lucky to live it. My (eventual) wife and I used to go rowing/fishing at her her aunt's lakefront property in Smithfield, Maine during the fall. All around us are the golden sceneries of fall! Soooo, so, beautiful!
Dante, Hyde Park, MA
Posted: 10/14/2012 7:45:59 PM
I love those fall days! I have been seeing those wooly bears crossing the road too! Cold weather to come!
Amy, Sophia, NC
Posted: 11/8/2010 5:38:00 PM
I *love* fall.
Tammy, Livingston, TX
Posted: 11/7/2010 12:33:27 PM
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