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Through sunny days and yellow
weeks,
With clouds that melt in
tears,
The glory of the harvest speaks
In all the silken
ears.

–J. Hazard Hartzell (1830–90)


Calendar

Michaelmas

Feast Day of St. Francis of Assisi

SKY WATCH

Venus

GARDENING

It’s Harvesttime!

Fall-Planted Bulbs


FOOD

Pear Recipes

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Pears are in season now. Try these
delicious recipes:

Caramelized Pear, Blue Cheese, and Honey-Roasted
Almond Salad

Some flavors are made
for each other — cheddar with apples, coffee with chocolate, and
pears with blue cheese and almonds.
Pears Helene
Use
fresh Bartlett pears for this festive dessert.
Spiced Pear Muffins
Use ginger and cinnamon to enhance these easy-to-make
muffins.
Tutti-Frutti Jam
A
tasty fruit jam that you will love.

Eating pears cleans the teeth. –Korean
proverb

 

 

Here’s some sound advice from our
archives on how to store apples and pears:

Apples and pears should all be gathered in early in
October, and if of late-keeping varieties, pack them at once in
barrels or boxes, and place them in a cool, dry cellar where the
temperature will vary but little from 8 degrees above the freezing
point of water. In such a place they should be kept until wanted for
use or for sale. To change the air or temperature will hasten decay,
which is a fact that many of the past generation failed to
learn.

–“Farmer’s Calendar,” The Old Farmer’s
Almanac,
1900

And here’s a modern approach to storing
apples:

Apples keep well for about six months at temperatures
between freezing and 45 degrees F. A Styrofoam chest or a double
cardboard box in a cool mudroom or cellar can approximate root
cellar conditions.

Sincerely, The Old Farmer’s
Almanac

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September 29—Michaelmas

The feast day of St. Michael, the archangel and
overcomer of the devil, is a Christian celebration based on the
ancient Celtic calendar. Its main importance in people’s lives was
that of a seasonal signpost in the year. In the British Isles, crops
were harvested and the surplus sold by late September, so this
became the time when farmers would pay their yearly rents to
landowners. Everyone ate goose at Michaelmas to bring prosperity,
and many farmers included “a goose fit for the lord’s dinner” with
their rent payments. Great market fairs occurred just before the
feast day, and the large crowds these attracted made it convenient
to hold elections at this time. Foods traditional for Michaelmas
include new wine; goose; cakes of oats, barley, and rye; and
carrots.

If St. Michael brings many acorns, Christmas will
cover the fields with snow.

October 4—Feast Day
of St. Francis of Assisi

St. Francis of Assisi (1182–1226) was the founder of
the Franciscan order. The son of a wealthy merchant named Pietro di
Bernardone, he publicly denounced his father’s wealth in 1206 and
dedicated his life to prayer and serving the poor. Pope Innocent III
eventually gave Francis and his followers permission to preach, and
he ordained Francis a deacon. The followers of Francis
were called Friars Minor, or “the lesser brethren.” Francis died on
October 3, 1226, and was canonized in 1228.

Read more about this saint, as well as the complete
text of his Sermon to the Birds
.

FALL-PLANTED BULBS

Fall is the perfect time to plant bulbs that will
bloom next spring. Plant the bulbs as long as the ground is workable
but get the following bulbs in the ground soon: trout lily,
narcissus (including daffodil), snowdrop, winter aconite,
starflower, and crown imperial. For crown imperial, add a little
lime to the soil. Try some new varieties this year. Glory of the
Snow tolerates partial shade and has white, blue, or pink starlike
flowers. Striped squill is very cold-hardy and will do well under
shrubs and trees and in borders.

See our bulb planting guide for more varieties and
planting tips
.

Venus returns to the night sky in early
October. Each night, about 40 minutes after sunset, the planet is
visible a bit higher in the western sky. It’s up 6 degrees on
October 1st and 10 degrees later in the month.

Find more monthly sky watch advice
online.

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