Except for an unusual cold spell a week ago, for a while now our temperatures here in Florida have been in the 80's during the day and in the high 50's /60's during the night which is pretty typical for this time of year, though I do have memories of many a balmy, hot end of October. This is lovely! I've been spending time outdoors gardening, and yesterday I went riding with my daughter- it was her first time riding with me and we had a great time together - except for the brief time that Dixie unexpectedly turned tail and took off for home with Jessica hanging on! We switched horses back at the barn and everything went well after that.
This morning I pulled up the weather and saw that the projected forecast for Sunday night is a low of 41 degrees. BBRR. Not pleasant for pineapples! Pineapples grow best in temperatures between 65 and 95. Though they can survive a freeze, temperatures below 40 can cause their leaves to become significantly damaged, resulting in poor growth or dying off altogether. I looked at the forecast again and then I noticed that the low for Monday night is said to be 32 DEGREES! Oh my gosh, that's FREEZING! Do you know what that means?? That means that Bob is going to be a busy boy today and tomorrow! It means that he has to build the entire "pineapplehouse" before the freeze prediction. This is what it looks like right now:
Hopefully, by Sunday night it will have a whole new look! It also means that I'm going to be busy planting all the pineapples in the ground. It seems silly to drag all the pots of plants into the new addition without permanently planting them. Not to mention that the %#^@* chickens discovered the fruit this past week and ate the entire pineapple, skin and all! I came home to find the top of a pineapple plant lying in the driveway. Initially I thought a chicken must have uprooted a new transplant, but then I saw that the fruit had been broken off the stalk and every part, save the very top had been devoured -and it was the biggest pineapple we'd grown yet. As I looked around I saw another and another... The dang chickens had eaten every one. Some were larger than this:
So now it's even more imperative that we house all our plants - not only to keep them from freezing, but to keep them safe from the chickens! Sometimes the cost of having free-range chickens is more than the price of the eggs!
I'm off now, to feed the billies, water gardens and trees and begin to prepare for frost.
I'm also thinking of friends and family in the Northeast as Hurricane Sandy heads their way.
Be Safe. Be Prepared.
Oh, and speaking of cooler weather coming... Yesterday, while Jess and I were out riding we came upon a cleanup crew in the park cutting up and stacking downed trees. As we primarily use our fireplace to heat our home in winter I asked what they planned to do with the wood. Back from our ride an hour later, the two of us loaded the pile into our truck. Ah, the favor of God!