october already!

On 10/2/2017 5:54 PM, Frank wrote:

I made my living for sixteen years making chemicals, but not the type you're thinking of, just little stuff like benzene, etc. <G> After the 16 years as a grunt I moved into management with several different chemical plants and refineries. We were careful in handling the stuff and what we sold off to other companies had the proper paper work for handling them. Unfortunately lots of small companies made really bad chemicals for bugs, etc. that were two steppers, get a good bit of the chemical, walk two steps and fall over dead. Like you I am cautious about any over the counter or home made chemicals and read the cautions part four or five times. Breathing some of that stuff fifty years ago or so didn't help my health. Anyone that handles any kind of chemical, even the ones under the kitchen sink, needs to be fully aware of what happens if you breath it, drink it, or get it on you. Amen!
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On 10/2/2017 8:03 PM, George Shirley wrote:

No question. I am often telling my wife to be careful with her use of bleach and need for ventilation when cooking.
I am very familiar with toxicology and have worked for years with toxicologists and their labs. Now retired I have written and been responsible for thousands of safety data sheets in my consulting.
When working, my company often refused to sell chemicals to companies that could not handle them responsibly.
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On 10/2/2017 7:22 PM, Frank wrote:

I do too, my wife often cooks without turning on the fan over the stove, goes straight out through the wall. She's an artist, does that ring a bell about safety? Years ago we lived in a small trailer house and I put in a fan above the stove in the wall. When we built our first home I sold the trailer and got an extra $100 bucks due to the fan, which cost something like ten bucks. In those days I made $2.50 an hour as a top operator in a chemical plant and ten bucks was a lot of money to us. Nowadays guys doing what I did in the sixties are making what sounds like big money but buys about the same amount of grub for us back then.

I hear that, happily I worked for years for Mobil, then moved on to some of the larger chemical and refining companies. As a safety professional I got several people fired for not doing their due diligence and have pulled wounded and dead out of something that should never have happened. You teach people the right way to do things and then they go dumb on you just once and kaboom! I'm glad I'm retired and don't have to do that anymore. We could certainly throw out some old stories over a cup of coffee. I go to reunions for a couple of companies, now all combined with the big boys, and we revisit our youth and some revisit their foolishness. I'm glad I'm retired.
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On 10/2/2017 9:26 PM, George Shirley wrote:

I worked for DuPont in fibers and plastics R&D but spent the last 3 years as a regulatory affairs consultant. Had to take early retirement as company began to shrink. They are now Dow-DuPont. The years in regulatory gave me good experience to consult but that is now down to 1-2 days a month. Makes me stay current with computers and new rules.
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On 10/6/2017 5:51 PM, Frank wrote:

I spent the last sixteen or seventeen years of my career as a lone safety professional, working from home. Wrote hundreds of safety manual's, had a goodly amount of small companies that worked for the big companies. Did their monthly safety meetings, wrote their safety manuals, visited the big chemical plants and refineries, etc. to do walk rounds to see if the client workers were working safely, etc. Enjoyed doing the job on my own until one day I started having strokes and heart attacks and finally had to retire. Gave my business to my best friend who I had been training for some time. He called me a couple of weeks ago, he turned 70 and turned the business over to his two sons to run. So it keeps going on, I hope, with teaching people to be safe. I'm a third generation worker in refineries, chemical plants, etc. and the only one who worked in safety. I don't miss making the rounds as my health is not so good, the reason I turned it over to my friend. Keep it up my friend, you may be saving lives and doing good.
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On 10/6/2017 9:23 PM, George Shirley wrote:

My work dealt with safety of our polymer products. I was responsible for elastomers, Teflon finishes and acrylics and monomers that made them. I was department coordinator with our Haskell toxicology lab and a backup TSCA coordinator. I worked with business managers setting up product safety compliance reviews. We worked with company regulatory groups in Canada, Europe and Asia so I had to be familiar with rules in these areas. I had contacts with EPA, FDA and OSHA.
When I was in R&D our outlook was limited to R&D, manufacturing and marketing with little contact with upper company management but regulatory had me working with several upper management layers and it was eye opening to learn business scope.
Before I left R&D DuPont Central Research tried to get me for a couple of positions but since R&D was declining and these jobs were related to another department, they shoved their people there. Probably ended up better with gaining regulatory and safety skills as this lab is now kaput.
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On 10/7/2017 6:33 AM, Frank wrote:

I finally gave in and retired completely after seeing how bad some companies were and are still. Stopped writing safety manuals and just said the hell with it. I'm much happier and much healthier since I hung up my hard hat. Still have problems from long ago strokes and heart attacks but still kicking along at age 78. Just got my DNA test back last night and it is not what my parents claimed. I'm not a half breed Native American, only less than 1% Native, my folks claimed more. Of course there was no DNA tests when they were young and just knew what their parents told them. Dang!
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On 10/7/2017 7:43 AM, George Shirley wrote:

Interesting. I got mine back a couple of weeks ago and it was unusual. I thought I was half Italian and half Lithuanian but Italian part is only 20% and rest is central and eastern European. 14% European Jew which I guess means the tribes of that region that migrated to Europe.
One daughter in laws sister is into genealogy and is a member of the DAR. She had the test and found 2% African and demanded her parents take the test to see where it came from. My daughter in law thinks this is funny and when I asked her what she thought she said it just means an ancestor was adventuresome. Our new granddaughter is 1% African and I told my lawyer son that it is good and would qualify her as a minority who could become a law professor at Harvard.
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On 10/7/2017 7:52 AM, Frank wrote:

In the south of the USA there are probably a tint of African blood in a lot of people. Could be even from when our family was still in the home land, overseas. I see nothing to worry about in my bloodline, just waiting for wife's DNA to come in. Her folks were mostly German and English so it should be interesting too. My folks and hers have been gone a good while. I have one half sister still living but in late eighties and lives in a nursing home now. We haven't spoken in 20 years or more and there won't be any before we are both gone. I'm hoping to go to sleep one night and not wake up. I've had enough surgeries, etc. and am still kicking, well, can't kick, can only walk on flat surfaces, but I can still get around with my cane so I'm happy. I have about a dozen canes, mostly bought when we were exploring Asia and Europe. Couldn't carry a gun so carried a heavy cane. My favorite cane rides in my car and has several nicks in the heavy lacquer that hides the iron wood. <G>
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On 10/7/2017 9:48 AM, George Shirley wrote:

I was surprised that neither wife or I had any african trace. Her and a son had done theirs before me. Her parents were of Greek extraction born in Turkey. She had told me that I was responisble for the 7% European Jew in our son and I figured that her family lines were closer to that area but she was right. I sent my results to my brother and told him he did not need to get his.
I still have all my facilities but they just do not work as well. I walked 2 miles this morning but was walking 4 last year. Kness started bothering me doing it every day. Mentioned that I am giving up hunting as all I have access to is public land and not being handicapped cannot hunt the closest stands. Last year I had to walk a mile and a quarter to reach the assigned stand in muzzle loader season. Also getting up at 3 am to get on the road by 4 and get there by 5 to claim stand drawn in lottery is no fun. I was almost late getting the stand because of road construction.
Went to my shooting club yesterday after over 4 months and was surprised how poor shooting was until I started practicing. Things really get out of tune without practice. I do have early stage AMD which affects target accquisition.
Most important to maintain is mental facilities. My father spent 5 years in a nursing home with multi infarct dementia after a stroke. He died at 88. One of my classmates, the best athlete, just died of dementia. He excelled in all sports but won a football scholarship to Maryland and was drafted by the pros. He only spent a year there as at 6 feet tall and only 200 pounds was too small. Could have been head trauma but I've seen it in a lot of non-athletic friends.
Wife met our new family doctor yesterday and was given dementia test. She said this morning, "I don't think I needed that test, what do you think?" Then said, "Don't answer that."
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On 10/7/2017 12:39 PM, Frank wrote:

I think it's funny too. Probably most folks including Swede's etc. have African blood. People are people when it comes to getting it on.

That's the people are people thing again. Ma Nature is always at work.

Tell me about it, took one of those tests to see how smart you are many years ago, came out with an IQ of 145, I would bet now that it is half that now. <G>

I mentioned before, I think, I was a gunsmith, ran a gun shop, hunted every season, built my own guns from old military rifles, my favorite is a 6.5 that I built on a Italian rifle from WWII with a new barrel, stock, etc. Put down a lot of deer and hogs with it. Have five firearms and a pistol in the gun cabinet near by and just clean them annually. My grandsons want nothing to do with weapons or hunting so I will probably sell them one day. Can't walk in the field or woods, can't afford a hunting lease, don't want to go into public lands during hunting season since I saw the results in the newspaper. Life is a bitch and then you die. Old Texas words.

Mine does that occasionally, I just smile gently and go on about my business with the smile still on. I haven't had a dementia test, YET.
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On 10/7/2017 2:27 PM, George Shirley wrote:

Forgot about your gun business. Our sons take no interest in hunting but all have guns as do the married ones wives. One's father in law is retired and has a thriving holster business. Makes them out of Kydex and if he cannot get a model for the mold but enough orders he buys them for his company tax exempt.
Our new family doctor appears very young and probably just follows latest medicare mandate on the test and I would not be surprised if you could google up the test and find all the questions and answers.
I like what one elderly woman told me, that her hard drive was so full, it took longer to retrieve the answer.
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On 10/7/2017 6:31 PM, Frank wrote:

I believe that too, was trying to remember where I put my old family genealogy and couldn't find it nor could I remember what it was. I think I know where a hidden copy is on this computer so I will look for it tomorrow and see if it is possible to get to it. Lost a couple of computers a while back but managed to get the stuff needed most back, I think. Here's the old geezer who, as a child and grown man too could find anything I ever had. I hate forgetting stuff but I guess it goes with getting older and older. I don't mind getting old, but I don't like my mind going whacky.
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    Yep; just remain living for a few more years and watch what happens!     It's becoming the norm, I guess, but October's here and Derald is 'way behind in fall planting. Got mustards up and running and some green beans that are 90% emergent a/o this morning. Late okra, planted in mid-August, is beginning to produce. Field peas are away and gone to compost and summer okras seem to be retiring but the eggplants are going strong. Did plant a few tomatoes–about a month "late"–but don't know yet where to put them. Planted three specimens each or three varieties: Beefsteak, Homestead, Mortgage Lifter. First time for Mortgage Lifter. Of the tomatoes claimed to have been "developed" for Florida (and that I've actually grown), only the Homestead performs in my garden, so it made the cut. Beefsteak, Big Boy, Better Boy, Early Girl all are dependable here and hold out well in summer's heat, when in beds; not so well in containers above ground.     Began prepping a bed for turnips and peas yesterday (10-4; really) but the weather turned crappy early on and remained so, driving me indoors I guess my days of gardening in the rain have passed. Today seems to be following yesterday's pattern or, at least, not getting sunny enough to dry the foliage.. More tropical goings-on down south, in the Gulf, I suppose. 'Tis the season.

    Man, I think the strawberries here are doomed. Mine have a few stray daughers that need to be relocated but not sure I'm going to fool with any that I'm not actually walking on. Some of the aerial offsets are taking root in the side walls of the bed. I'll probably leave those. Most of them are on the East side of a N/S bed so they'll be shaded in afternoons. Since they're already in place, probably shall leave the strawberries unmolested until spring, for another winter harvest and then send them to compost. From last winter's crop, I ate maybe three, DW ate maybe zero and getting the plants through another Florida summer just wouldn't be worth the effort. I know now why commercial producers in the region where I grew up raise strawberries as annuals: For most of the year one is looking at non-productive green stuff that must be watered, fed, and shaded from the sun from early June through later in the year than now. I can always grow peas in that space; they love the heat and the sunshine. Besides, the aphids really like the peas, as do ants. Neither seems to think much of the strawberry plants.
--
Derald
Peninsular FL, USA
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On 10/6/2017 12:38 PM, snipped-for-privacy@invalid.com wrote:

The boss lady and I turned out the 22 cubic foot freezer after lunch. Found frozen stuff back to 2012 tucked away into corners. Still good mostly but it seemed that several bags that were vacuum pumped didn't actually seal. The contents went into the big pot to turn into soup for later and the ones with frost bite went into the composter after thawing.
Took us over two hours to get everything back in the freezer and properly labeled as to where what is. I don't think we will need to grow certain vegetables for another two or three years. <G> Especially okra, twelve bags for two of us to eat will last a long time.
Tomorrow we're going into the small freezer on our refrigerator, side by side. Most of that is meats, sweets, etc. so should be easy. At least I hope so. The big freezer now has a map magnet held to the door so we can actually find things again. Will do the same with the smaller freezer. I do need to clean out the refrigerator and give it a good cleaning and a new container of baking soda to hold down scents.
The fall garden is in, green beans again, summer peppers are still producing, the winter greens, etc. are up and growing. Kumquats are starting to turn so will be harvesting by January, maybe, depends on Texas weather. The pear tree still has several small pears still getting a little bigger. Was afraid there would be no pears nor kumquats after the hard freezes of last January. I would like to put in another fruit tree but am not sure there is enough room in this small property.
George
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    Our freezer is empty and clean at this time. We disposed of a fair proportion of its contents during a recent extended electricity outage. Moved items we judged to be safe to eat into the fridge freezer when the juice came back on but left the freezer empty for a thorough cleaning.      In the late 1990's my wife and I did a real-world test of every counter top vacuum sealer as well as every brand of bags available to us at retail, OTC and online. The best of the vacuum pumps was Tilia Foodsaver but I can achieve a higher vacuum using my modified high-end bicyle pump. More importantly, for practical purposes, 100% of the heat-sealed bags failed within a few months. Most of them failed at the "factory" seams; very few failed at the appliance's heat seal. That's why I use Mason jars. In earlier days, we vacuum-stored some dried and some frozen foods in Mason jars. Don't do it anymore but still have the works ;-) Same for pressure canning, although, I dont think we'd use our present stock of jars for pressure canning.     The last time I used the Tilia Foodsaver was to remove excess fluid from an overfilled automatic transmission. That would have been 2001, '02, or thereabouts. I recently sent the Foodsaver to the landfill because it is dead.     Instead of going through the blanching, chilling, etc. preparatory to freezing stuff, as often as is reasonable, we incoporate garden produce, AWA some store-bought vegies, into finished or nearly finished side dishes that are frozen. Easy enough to do as part of regular meal preparation. We just cook enough of whatever for, say, four (or however many) instead of just for two. I'm serious when observing that I garden to eat thaw 'n gnaw! I pay the electricity co-op to let us bypass that other stuff.     But we definitely still have the "works".

    Man, I just can't get okra right. Always seem to plant more than is needed and have way too much in the freezer (most of it the last step away from ready to fry), not to mention daily new okra but you have to keep taking it in order to keep getting it. The two "spineless" varieties that I grow regularly become noticeably less so as the plants mature at summer's end. I usually plant new okra in late summer instead of continuing to prune crapped-out bushes. Began getting okra from this year's fall stand a couple of days back. If winter holds off like it "should", there'll be okra in the freezer fairly soon. Got mustards under them doing nicely. Also have late peppers (two varieties of sweet bell peppers, two of jalapeño, one pepperoncini, two of Tabasco. Most of them will be diced and frozen immediately, although some of the japs are frozen whole. Don't know what to do with the pepperoncini but I'm thinking of using some in a BWB pepper vinegar (called "pepper sauce" in parts of the South) in the same manner as the jalapeño and Tabasco. BIL's recipe is fine with me.

    Hah! We tried that map thing. Keeping the map updated and useful became an exercise in futility that we sometimes laugh about now, when we have to put our heads together to try figure out what's where. Now, it seems that we've sort of divided the freezer into invisible "areas" into which we pretend to separate foods by nebulous categories.

    Did the fridge thing, too. Removed the innards from its freezer in order to clean the cooling coils, the defrost heater and accessible parts of air distribution ducts, fan, etc. The fan and its motor were surprisingly dirty but easily R&R'd.

    Where I lived in earlier years, we always had citrus including now antique orange varieties, grapefruit, kumquats, tangerine, tangelo. Also at times had papaya, mango and guavas. Several successive cold winters took out the papaya, mangoes, and guavas and significantly reduced the amount of dooryard citrus. Guavas are coming back in the phosphate mining areas. Where I live now, we have a sour as hell volunteer (seedling) tangerine tree that, after years and years finally gets enough sunshine to produce small sour tangerines, although, my neighbor insists that its "Clementine" oranges. I don't think the guy ever has seen and actuall Clementine. From 1977 to winter of 1983-'84 we drove through miles of mature orange groves to get here. The even colder winter of 1988 or thereabouts not only took out the survivors of the previous super cold but also the replacement trees. The growers wisely gave up citrus and now all of that land is planted with pine trees. The surface water that moderated the winter chill, making citrus cultivation possible in central and west-central Florida, now is all gone out the sewers or St. Petersburg, Clearwater and the rest of Pinellas County, which essentially is not fit for human habitation due to the absence of fresh ground water. Af course, as long as the yankee assholes running this and neighboring counties keep selling them water to flush their toilets, everything's fine, just fine and they all expect to be dead by the time the water runs out or all becomes salty so why care?.

    We have no pears, apples or peaches that do well in this climate, despite past attempts to introduce "improved" varieties that were purported to be fit for this climate and soil.     Within my memory, folks have tried growing varieties of blackberries, apples, wine grapes, table grapes, and as far as I can tell the only success accrued to the folks selling stuff to the farmers.     I have a neighbor with a long history of trying diiferent cultivars of peaches with no success. They usually get duped into blooming by warm January and February days only to have the blossoms burned by freezing temperatures, which can occur at any time during those months. In addition, the peach foliage simply can't take the summer sun. Sun scald and leaf curling are chronic manifestations. In the event a few tiny peaches appear, they're almost 100% (used to be 100% but great strides have been made....) certain to be infested with the maggots of a tiny opportunistic wasp which laid her eggs in the blossoms' ovaries. Sensible folks who've been in this part of the country for any length of time don't waste their efforts on peaches, apples, etc. but the handy homeowner stores continue to sell them to somebody, I dont know whom. The same folks who buy strawberry plants or seed potatoes in the spring, I guess.
--
Derald
Peninsular FL, USA
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On 10/7/2017 11:10 AM, snipped-for-privacy@invalid.com wrote:

Our foodsaver is still chugging along even though it is almost 20 years old. Had thought of buying one of the high dollar ones but still keep the food saver.

We do much the same when we have large crops coming in and we want to hang onto the grub instead of passing it along to kids, grands, etc.

Okra, in our climate, grows like the weed it is. Wife dearly loves the stuff, I eat it french fried in deep oil, or in a gumbo or a soup. I've seen the woman eat it raw. Yuck!

If I'm the one doing the diving it works, if wife goes in everything gets jumbled up. I now carry the key to the big freezer so she can't get into it, otherwise it gets tossed around.

I have the same problem with my wife being suckered by the big plant stores. Oh yeah, this will grow anywhere. Generally she babies it for a year and then it gets ripped out. Keep telling her that we have three fruit trees that will grow here, a fig, a kumquat, and a pear bred by a local state guy that found it as a cross tree in his orchard. If it doesn't get frozen in January occasionally we get a good crop from it. She also plants avocado seeds to see if she can get a tree, nope, a freeze comes by and they turn into dead bushes. When we lived in Louisiana I had a cross tree between a lemon and an orange, made huge lemons and lived through the frosts. Kumquats in Louisiana, kumquats in Texas, produce like crazy and I like them. I can buy apples, etc. at the local supermarket cheaper than I can keep trying to grow my own.
Here we are on 10/7 and it's 80F outside, only in Texas.
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    Neither Wife nor I has immediate family within a reasonable drive and most of mine probably have gardens that would embarrass me, the only neighbor with whom I'd actually _share_ food doesn't cook, and we learned the hard way about in-kind donations to food banks and the like so nowadays we try not to produce large crops. Just enough to feed us, with a little "extra" for the freezer. Any excess goes into the compost, which (theoretically) gives another shot at eating it, just in a different form ;-). If we give it to people (none or whom knows what actually needing food is or what "poverty" means), it just ends up in a septic tank!

    Man, I eat the slimy stuff any way one prepares it; even raw ;-)

    I think it's just a case of folks in four-season latitudes not taking into account that in some parts of the country the garden season starts in autumn and begins tailing off as summertime gets here in April or May. Certainly, June is far too late to plant anything besides peas or okra. Most peppers can handle the sun (with some shading) but they're best started in Ferbruary or March.. Down here, one sees folks buying strawberry sets, onion sets and even seeds in spring when, generally speaking, December or January is about the latest many of them can be put in the garden with any expectation of positive results.

    Hey: If the lady weren't an optimist, you might be living alone and without that gaggle of kids and grandkids ;-)

    At his boyhood home in Tampa, FL, my friend of long-standing (and who now is my nearest neighbor) enjoyed the fruits of a backyard tree which bore seven citrus varieties. His mother began a series of axillary bud grafts the same year she&hubbie had the house built. Have no clue how or where she got the scions or over what period of time she executed the grafts but by the time we came along, she had produced one fine tree, I must say.

    Not so fast, sailor. Same here, too. Not yet 9:30AM, as I type, and 79° on my front porch. Overnight low of 76° and the humidity's back. Had a few days of relief after Irma, when less humidity made things at least seem cooler.
--
Derald
Peninsular FL, USA
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On 10/8/2017 12:07 PM, snipped-for-privacy@invalid.com wrote:

I've often thought how quiet it would be if that happened. I've been with her to long to toss her our or vice versa. She's Catholic, I'm nothing, she's an artist, my next wife won't be, if any, she's leaves stuff lying around, I'm a neat freak, but the dog loves both of us. <BSEG> Her family women live to be 100, men in my family croak at any time. I won't ride in a car she drives, last time she took me to a hospital I wanted out so I could walk there. Still, there's something in there that won't let us let go, we've been together since we were both eighteen years old, we fight occasionally and then it's make up time. <BG>

I've been thinking of trying that on my kumquat, have seen trees done that way that produce all year.

There is one thing I despise, being cold and wet, to much of that sailing on a USN destroyer way, long ago. That is just misery to me, now, I stay indoors and watch the cold, wet, rain, heat, whatever. I do love air conditioning, have memories of growing up in a hot house in summer and cold in winter. The house my Dad, me, two uncles built from two old Navy housing units in 1949. I was nine years old and could swing a hammer. I got out of the Navy in 1960, came home, house had air conditioning and household heat. Dad told me the first year I was gone they saved enough money from not having to feed me so they put in all that stuff. I still laugh at my old Dad even though he has been gone for many years. We shoved our kids out as fast as we could also. They are both doing well for themselves so I'm happy.
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    Yep, and October keeps on slip slip slipping into the future, too. Something et the Slenderette bean bush babies last night. Not a cutworm; cutworm would have left the tops behind. I'm thinking grasshopper or, maybe the furry soft-bodied thing that 's eating a Delinel seedling top over in another bed ;-) Assuming it had walked a good distance to get there, I left it undisturbed. Got a photo, though. If I can identify the beast, I'll be more able to determine whether just to plan on re-planting the Delinels, too, and letting the beast have its way with these. I mean, everything has to eat. Only problem is that, if this is _not_ a typically warm autumn, I'm running out of time for the beans. Been a while since I had to make a fire before late November but I remember some cold-ass halloweens, too. The weather already has begun to cool: Right now {13 Oct.12:31 P (13:31)}, it's 86°(F) on my always shaded front porch; overnight low (same location, same t'meter) was 75°(F).
--
Derald
Peninsular FL, USA
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