Honeybees and Strawberries

 

It’s early fall in the High Country, that brief season before temperatures plummet, and the land settles into quiet repose. Everything and everyone seem knows what’s ahead.

DSC01926DSC_0119 2Ranchman the Superhero mowed the upper meadow today, disbursing seeds from flowers and grasses that graced our view for three months. The before (left) and after (right) photos testify to this summer’s heavy rain. Some of the wild (non-invasive) daisies were shoulder high before their haircut! The deer have loved it.

I walked to the front terrace after checking to enusre he left the straggler blooms, knowing his work on the grassier part of the property stirred things up. The first delights I found were two beautiful strawberries, perfectly ripe. Here they are, nestled in the monarda, ajuga, and wild asters. I thought of no reason to share them with the birds, ants, or chipmunks, so ate them still warm from wallowing in the sunshine. (I almost think the smell of these tiny fresh strawberries is better than their taste.)

DSC_0119Then I moved toward the closest area with sedum, which I’ve planted almost everywhere because it’s resiliant and drought-tolerant. Ten feet away, I heard them—hundreds of honeybees working vigorously to collect pollen. Around these parts, beekeepers take hives high into the mountain valleys, letting their bees fly freely all summer. We have had SO MANY bees this year, I suspect a brave man or woman planted apiaries over the ridge.

DSC_0129As I think about the winter to come, I’m content knowing my garden has grown madly and been  deeply watered almost every afternoon (and evening) for two months. (The sprinkler has been off since early June.) I look forward to the first crocus and wild iris in late April, followed by the 800-plus daffodils in May that fill the glade.

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens.” Ecclesiastes 3:1