October pumpkins in abundance | Mt. Airy News

October signals the abundance of pumpkins. They cover the entrance of produce markets in a sea of ​​bright orange. They are also featured sprawled out on church lawns where they can be purchased at fund-raisers. As we begin October, take the kids and grandkids on a search for their own jack o’lantem by visiting a pick your own pumpkin patch.

There are two kinds of pumpkin patches; the first kind is a man-made patch where there are hundreds of pumpkins in rows and you walk through the rows and choose the one you want. The other type of pumpkin patch is pumpkins growing in the field. Kids actually visit the patch and harvest their pumpkin. Many of these farms have a hayride, playgrounds and refreshments. Many old fashioned country stores feature plenty of pumpkins, apples and Halloween candies, Indian corn and other decor.

Checking out a row or bed of purple turnips

The turnips sown earlier in September are sprouting and have two leaves. If the turnip sprouts are too thick, thin them out so they will have space to develop large turnips. Feed the turnips with Plant-Tone organic vegetable food once a month and keep soil hilled up to cover the vegetable food on each side of the row. As we move further into October, place a layer of crushed leaves between the rows for added protection.

The furnace and air conditioner get a break

These Indian Summer days of October are comfortable and are giving our furnace and air conditioner a break in the season. These October days are pleasant because the humidity is lower and provides us with a bit of natural air conditioning. A crisp breeze also brings some comfort. These are opportunity days to finish all lawn and garden chores and also relax on the front porch.

Indian Summer paves the way for Jack Frost

It’s hard to believe with the pleasant days of Indian Summer temperatures that frost is only a few weeks away. We can expect some frost after the middle of the month, but not much of a killing frost until the end of the month. The light frosts will benefit the cool weather vegetables and harden them off for the heavy frosts and hard freezes that will arrive in November.

Making a plate of sweet pumpkin puffs

This is a great pumpkin recipe that is simple to prepare for an autumn dessert. You will need two and a half cups of Bisquick, one and a half cups of sugar, half teaspoon of pumpkin pie spices, two cups canned pumpkin, half cup milk, two beaten eggs, four tablespoons Crisco oil, four table spoons light margarine, and one teaspoon vanilla flavoring. Combine the Bisquick, one cup of sugar and the pumpkin pie spices. Mix in the two cups of pumpkin, one teaspoon vanilla flavoring, half cup of milk, two beaten eggs and four tablespoons Crisco oil. Mix all ingredients well for sixty seconds. Grease the muffin tins and fill the muffin cups two thirds full. Bake at 400 degrees for twelve minutes or until done. Cool slightly, remove from pans. Mix half cup sugar, half teaspoon pumpkin pie spices, and four tablespoons of light melted margarine. Dip the puffs in the sugar. spice mixture. Makes at least 24 puffs. It can be made without the sugar-spice topping.

The four o’clocks have had a wonderful season

The four o’clocks have had a productive season. They have bloomed since the last of May and we still have several blooming on the front of the porch. They open earlier each evening because the end of Daylight Saving is drawing nearer. At this time late in the season, they are still in bloom at noon each day. We think it will take a hard freeze in November to finish their long season. They have become perennial and return each year. Four o’clocks are a great investment in foliage and flowers for three of the year’s four seasons.

Checking out the season’s crop of acorns

The forest floor has lots of acorns even though the squirrels have harvested their fair share of them. When there is a huge layer of acorns lying on the ground in mid-October they are sending a subtle message that they are waiting around for some snow before the year ends.

Red berries cover the limbs of dogwoods

There have been plenty of red berries on the dogwoods in spite of the fact that many have been eaten by birds. There are still a lot remaining on the limbs. We don’t know if an abundance of berries is any sign of a harsh winter or not. You can gather some of these red berries to decorate the dining room or coffee table for Christmas.

You can still set out a row or bed of onion sets

It may be close to mid-October but it is still Indian Summer. You can still set out a bed of onion sets. They are still available at most hardware’s and garden centers. You can choose from white, red, or yellow sets. The first hard freeze usually occurs in November and that’s how much time you have to set out those onion sets. At this time of season, you can go ahead and apply a layer of crushed leaves on the sets between the rows when you set them out.

The Christmas cactus ready to move inside

All the Christmas cactus have been outside on the porch in a semi-sunny location since mid-May. The time is now approaching to move them inside to the sunny living room before the arrival of the first frost later this month. They will need to be trimmed back a little and fed with Flower-Tone organic flower food and some cactus medium needed at top of the container. In the living room where they winter over, they will need to be in a semi-sunny location away from direct sunlight to prevent foliage from turning reddish. They will need a drink of water once a week but don’t over water them.

Preserving autumn leaves for harvest displays

To preserve autumn leaves in all their color and glory, use a can of beeswax and melt it in a small pan and dip each leaf in the wax, remove and place on a paper plate to dry. They can be used on the dining room or coffee table or mantel for harvest decorations with jack-be-little pumpkins and Hershey’s autumn Kisses, candy corn or creme pumpkins.

Making a jack o’ lantern and pie

You can make a jack o’ lantern and have a pumpkin pie with it later on by painting a face on the pumpkin with acrylic paints and place it on the front porch. Use acrylic paints in colors of orange, yellow black and white to highlight and color the face of the pumpkin. After Halloween, you can cut the pumpkin, peel it cut into chunks, boil until tender and mash with a potato masher or run through the blender in grate mode, and make into pumpkin pies.

The almanac for October

The moon will reach its first quarter on Sunday, Oct. 2. Yom Kipper will begin at sundown on Tuesday, Oct. 4. There will be a full moon on Sunday, Oct. 9. This full moon of October will be named “Full Hunter’s Moon.” Columbus Day will be observed on Monday, Oct. 10. The moon will reach its last quarter on Monday, Oct. 17. The new moon of October will occur on the evening of Oct. 25. Halloween will be Monday, Oct. 31.

Decorating with Jack-be-little pumpkins

These tiny pumpkins are about the size of your fist and they make colorful displays for the dining room or coffee table. You can paint faces on them or use them as they are. Use Hershey’s autumn Kisses or creme pumpkins around base of pumpkins for centerpieces. The kids will love these decorations. Replenish the candy often.

Pumpkin carving kit is a good investment

The best and safest way to carve out a jack o’ lantern is with a durable and long lasting pumpkin carving kit. A quality kit with plenty of blades and attachments costs around $12 and will last for many years. They can also be used to carve melon baskets and cantaloupes. A kit includes attachable blades, a scraper, and a scooper and saw blades of all sizes.

Still time to plant pansies

Pansies are the annuals of autumn that will carry over into winter and early spring. As October arrives, there is still plenty of time to start containers of pansies. You can still purchase six and nine packs of pansies in full bloom at hardware’s, nurseries garden centers, Walmart, Home Depot, Lowe’s Home Improvement and Ace Hardware.

Hoe hoe hoedown

“Checking out the tomatoes.” Doctor: “That’s a horrible gash on your forehead, what happened?” Child: “My sister hit me with some tomatoes.” Doctor: “That’s amazing. I’ve never seen a tomato cut like that before.” Child: “Well, these tomatoes were canned tomatoes.”

“Silent treatment.” Father: “Your boyfriend stayed last night.” Daughter: “And did the noise bother you, Dad?” Father: “No, but the long periods of silence did.”

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