Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Fall Ruminations

Kralltown Rd., Washington Township, York County, Pennsylvania, September 15, 2014
Fall is beginning to make an appearance around my cabin. The trees still look green, but the annual foliage on the forest floor is beginning to show signs of color. Poison ivy turns first, and a few of the other plants are beginning to follow suit. Nothing is very pretty or dramatic yet; the change is only just beginning—greens fading towards a dull yellow or orange. The big trees are the last to turn color and that still won’t happen for a few weeks.

This week should be the big Broad-winged Hawk migration through southern Pennsylvania. More northerly hawkwatches are already starting to report daily counts above 1000 hawks each day. Likely in this area, the big push will be tomorrow or Thursday. The birds won’t reach the U.S.- Mexico border for another 8-10 days. And it will be the better part of a week before they arrive in Veracruz MX. By the time they get down there, the flocks (or "kettles" as we hawkwatchers call those flocks) could hold tens or thousands and even hundreds of thousands of birds.

I’m noticing the chillier nights, which make for great sleeping weather, as long as the animals don’t take all the room on the bed, which they often attempt to do. The big question I wrestle with each year is when should I "migrate" my houseplants from outdoors back inside the house? The Christmas and Easter cactus are the easiest ones to gauge, as I try not to bring them back inside until they have set buds. My houseplants do best when they are not in the house but outside. Sometimes I think they are only just barely being kept alive inside during the winter. So I tend to wait until the last minute, or even the last second, before bringing them inside. I know the time for them to be outside is soon ending. I just don’t know which day it will be.

1 comment:

Sharkbytes said...

I think mine are coming in today.