Fall into autumn

Welcome to this week’s Reno News & Review.

Kind of a bittersweet week at the Casa Burghart/ O’Brien/Spitzer/O’Brian/ Aquirre Carreño. Last week, I saw that we were supposed to get frost on Tuesday, and thus, it was time to finish the garden harvest. Then Sunday morning, I checked accuweather.com, and it was saying 34 degrees for a low on Tuesday. Reprieve. Then, this morning, Monday, the Web’s predicting 31 degrees and colder.

Dang, that means I have to clean out the garden in the hours after work. I don’t know about you, but I enjoy the final harvest, and I feel kind of bad to have to rush it. I think maybe I’ll just harvest the ripe stuff and put blankets over my tomatoes and peppers. I can probably stretch a couple more weeks out of summer.

Any of you folks ever have problems with voles? A vole is a field mouse, and I guess they’re only a problem in backyard vegetable gardens when their population explodes out in the wild. Hard to say. I noticed earlier in the summer something was gnawing on my carrots and beets, but it wasn’t every carrot, and I thought it was only carrots near where I’d pulled some (giving the little varmints access). Well, looks as though one has made a great burrow under my artichoke. I’m hesitant to put poison in the garden, but they have shown no interest in my peanut butter baited trap. Anybody got a tip? I can be pretty ruthless against cute little mousies.

This morning, our exchange student, Abraham, was pointing out that the heater doesn’t work in his room. He’s a little sensitive to the cold, I think. Kathleen pointed out that we haven’t turned the heater on yet. Coincidentally, I had just come in from the garden in my robe and bare feet, checking the voletraps.

Seems we all have to make adjustments for the colder season. Except for the voles, they just have to adjust to death. I hear it doesn’t take long.