I wouldn’t complain if we got a bit of rain, but October has been magical this year. Sunny warm days, cool nights and glowing foliage with the sun rise. This is what I’ve been looking at early mornings as I sip my coffee in the dining room.
In the wee hours of yesterday morning a wave of frost rolled over the field and gardens closest to the house. I had, perhaps instinctively, cut and brought in for drying all the sweet and Thai basil the day before so no loss there. Hardest hit were the Canna Lilies, cantaloupe, zinnias and, sadly, my overgrown jungle of Amethyst Jewel cherry tomatoes.
Wanna know what happens when you try to pull a cherry tomato plant after frost?
The tomatoes fall. With the lightest touch, they fall like marble size pieces of purple hail. And, I discovered, they make a nice ‘pop’ when you happen to step on any that land in the grass on its way to the wheelbarrow and compost pile.
Here is a portion of my frost touched cherry tomato bed, glowing in this morning’s light.
I was amazed this year when three volunteer tomato seedlings quickly took over a pretty big micro garden. Last year this area was home to large artichoke plants. This year I changed it up and planted Canna lilies, a hardy Hibiscus, rhubarb, a few asparagus roots and a row of purple beans in front.
Then up popped these tomatoes – brought in with the compost or by a hungry chipmunk the previous year. They are a heritage variety of cherry tomato – Amethyst Jewel – which I started from seed and planted in 2016. The fruit starts out the most beautiful dark purple, almost black, then ripens into a pale orange.
To say it’s a vigourous grower is an understatement – the three plants took over the entire area, layer after layer of tomato stems two to three feet deep. The size and lushness of the vegetation is so out of scale with the size of the fruit you need to get in close before, gradually, spotting the hundreds and hundreds of purple fruit just waiting for a few more warm sunny days to ripen.
And fall to the ground.
And sprout next year.
The Toronto Reference Library is the main branch of ” the world’s busiest urban library system,” with more than 1.2 million library cardholders and 30 million website visits per year. It’s on Yonge Street north of Bloor Street – uptown Toronto, on the edge of Yorkville, the glitziest (and most expensive) shopping neighbourhood in the city. The exterior is unremarkable – passerby would never know that on the other side of the brick wall is an expansive atrium, a multitude of computer stations, areas for reading, studying, researching, 3D printing, drinking really good coffee and, of course, stacks and stacks of books.
On the second floor facing west are a row of rectangular windows, each with two vertical panes jutting out and joining in a ‘V’ shape. This photo is the view straight through one of these windows to the construction site opposite (itself with its own empty frames of windows from a bygone era); it also captures reflections created on the angled windows of streets beside the library and a view of a lounge below the window.