For those of you not familiar with a New England Autumn, or more particularly a Northern New England autumn, the only real word to describe the natural beauty is “Glorious.” The dark greens of summer give way to a rainbow radiance as the forest makes its transition to winter. Maples turn to so many colors on the spectrum, from a brilliant red to a flame yellow depending on the species of the tree and the soil and geographic position. Maples growing in deeper wet, or swampy areas turn a brilliant red, while the hillside maples have a lighter red and yellow hue. I could go on about each species, but I’ll just say once again that the change is glorious. And what is most important to note is that some of our residents are experiencing this for the very first time. Truly a wonder of nature to behold.
Along with the change of colors, comes the shorter days and the continued harvest of our gardens. In addition to the final harvests comes the preparation of the gardens, soils and fields for winter in preparation of the next growing season. The residents experience the cycle of life in our gardens, forests and fields. We’ve partnered with a local Organic Dairy Farm to hay our many acres of fields here at Ironwood, with one of the benefits being the sustainable use of centuries old agricultural land along with the Organic hay that we receive for our own Horses and Mini’s. This week we hosted the year’s final haying of the fields and we are grateful for this mutual relationship…a great, all around experience for all to see.
As many of you saw and experienced during the last family weekend, our Organic Gardens were certainly second to none and would be the envy of any larger scale Organic facility in the mid coast area. Beets, lettuce, onions, garlic, swiss chard, tomatoes and peppers are still growing strong, but the clock is ticking fast!
Our little campuses are very busy this time of year, as much is done to prepare for the chills of winter coming along the way soon. In addition to the very busy schedules, gardens are prepped, hikes are enjoyed in the colorful outdoors and the fire wood stocks need to be replenished. While a resident may look ahead at their time here as being a long journey, the days are so busy as to allow them time to truly “stay in the moment.” And any graduate will tell you their time here went by very, very quickly…
We hope you are all well and enjoying the “change of season” wherever you are. Have a great week and as always, thank you for allowing your child to be part of our lives.