From Where I Sit – Plans for Fall

The calendar assures us fall is here. With a bizarre summer, weather-wise, in many parts of Canada we need tangible proof the seasons are indeed changing. Edmonton had its hottest day of the year in early September and the forecast looks good for more above-average temperatures.

This is a good thing for the hundreds of thousands of farm families hoping to bring in the harvest. It is September 9 as I write this and we have yet to combine a bushel. The drought and crazy weather kept the seed from germinating when it should have and everything is running so much later because of it. No one knows what to expect quantity- or quality-wise. But in that brainless (or is it hopeful) way farmers have, the thinking is ?next year will be better.? Yeah, if you don’t starve or go broke before then. We too will keep plugging along, I guess.

If your year’s income doesn’t depend on these few days/weeks in September chances are you are enjoying the season. There are the fall colours and the smell of autumn to look forward to. You may have a garden to harvest. Perhaps You’re still doing cartwheels because the kids are out of your hair and back in school where they belong.

Can I make some suggestions for fall activities? Enjoy your flower beds and pots until the first killing frost. Be ruthless with the perennials that may have overtaken an area and your patience. Dig ?em up and haul ?em out. If you can pay it forward by giving some to friends or neighbours go for it. Your conscience will thank you. Now is also the time to transplant the ones that need dividing. Trees especially will need many good soakings before the ground freezes. By the time you do all the necessary yardwork the first snowfall will seem like a blessing!

If You’re in the market for yard or patio stuff, now is the time to cash in on the deepest discounts. Half- price fountains and patio sets are there for the taking. In Alberta, September is also an ideal time to plant trees and nursery prices are discounted.

If you have time and money the fall is also an ideal time to travel. It’s considered shoulder season, which means prices are dropping from the summer peak. The crowds are smaller and the kids are all back in school. See cartwheel note above.

If you have more time and money left the fall is traditionally a good time for a big construction or renovation push. Now the race is against the calendar and the thermometer. If pouring concrete is part of your plan do it sooner rather than later so it has time to cure. If You’re building a deck or fence or garage and your neighbour isn’t away on said vacation maybe you can rope him into helping. Bonus: he’ll likely drink less beer because It’s cooler now.

Other than that You’re on your own. My focus has to be combining, from where I sit.

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