Or I could just write “Autumnal Equinox”. It’s not like there are a bunch of witches living in this house anyway, right? Right.
The scientific definition of autumnal equinox is that it is the moment when the sun crosses the equator on its journey southward, and we experience a day and a night that are of equal duration. Technically that was yesterday (it can vary from 21 to 24th of September, depending how tilted the Earth’s axis is), but I decided to celebrate this passage of seasons today by a) harvesting the accidental crop of potatoes and b) cleaning that plastic seashell that we used as a sand box and kiddie pool. Loulou Maya helped me out and quite enjoyed the process, though she made it clear she wouldn’t help out to clean the flooded sand box as she found dead insects quite yucky. I do too, that’s why I insisted we should keep the cover closed when not in use, but then I kind of gave up. Don’t give up people, put that lid on. Otherwise you will have to include fishing drowned slugs and spiders out of muddy rainwater in your Mabon celebrations. But I digress.
Back to the harvest. Planting potatoes is extremely easy, as is taking care of them. As I explained in the garden tour post, we didn’t even know we had potato plants till my mother visited us and recognized them. And then we remembered throwing some potatoes that had too many sprouts in the ground a few months ago. So basically we just let the abundant Dutch rain fall on them and enjoyed their white flowers during the summer. The last week the plants have grown thin and withered and according to my dad, that’s the time to harvest: once the plant above the ground is dead.
As a first step, I pulled out the dead leafy part and then we took out some random tools from the garden shed and started looking for treasure.
I just love it! You have no idea what size or shape will come up to the surface next. And though Loulou Maya shared my excitement about the “giants and gnomes” that I dug out, she refused to dig herself the minute the first earthworm appeared. Which I respect, because I am also not a fan of earthworms but I tried to remind myself that they are a sign that the earth in our garden is healthy and full of life.
Those white little balls in the last picture are slug eggs. Or snail eggs. They look really beautiful and I feel almost happy that we allowed slug / snail babies to feed off of our garden freely. In the end, there was enough for everyone. And in some cases more than enough. Take the calendula flowers for example. I ‘ve had enough! I have been harvesting them for ages, drying them, putting them in my food, making teas, letting Loulou Maya put them in all sorts of “soups” and “magical potions” and they are still there, a new dozen blooming every day!
Here is a pic of our accidental crop. washed and ready to be stored in the pantry!
How did you celebrate Mabon?