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My Goals for the Month of September

Octavius September The Prudent Homemaker 


Garden Goals: is predicting hotter than usual weather for the southwest U.S. for September and October (and predicting an early fall for the Northeast and South). The heat makes it hard to want to work in the garden (just a couple of days ago it was 113ºF/45ºC), but work still needs to be done.  It's still too hot in September to plant most things for my fall garden (soil temperatures are 80-85ºF and air temperatures are over 100º, cooling down into the upper 90's by the end of the month) but I need to have the garden ready to plant in October.


1. Weed the garden

2. Fertilize fruit trees

3. Pull out dead vines

4. Deadhead zinnias

5. Start cutting down the dead peach tree. (My large Early Elberta tree died this year and I want to get it out so that I can replace it this fall).

6. Trim hedges

7. Fertilize roses

8. Pull out plants that died (several bushes and a tree) that are within the one-year warranty and return them to the nursery for credit. I will also take the pots back for credit, as they give a few cents credit for each of the larger black pots. 

9. Pull out large bushes that fried in June. June had 117º temperatures (something we don't usually see until July) and a lot of my plants completely burned. 



Sewing Goals:

1. Mend 10 items of clothing

2. Hem three pairs of pants for my husband

3. Continue to work on whitework embroidery project

4. Sew a gift (or two) for my daughter for her birthday



1. Donate items to the thrift store

2. Tidy the garden shed

3. Organize school supplies

4. Organize toiletry cabinet 


What are your goals for September?


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  • Athanasia September 07, 2017

    Oh my! Maybe they were just using up paint remnants, free paint?

  • SJ in Vancouver BC Canada September 08, 2017

    Are you close to a Habitat for Humanity's Re-Store? I've found paint there quite cheap.

  • Mable September 05, 2017

    My biggest goal for this month is to stop eating sweets. In the last year and a half, I lost 110 pounds. This morning I got on the scale and 10 pounds have found their way home. I refuse to let myself gain a huge amount of weight again, which happened when I was essentially bed ridden for about a year and food became my consolation. Now it is just that I like baked goods and have been making/eating too much of them.

    The other goal is to paint a few walls that need it.

    Modest goals compared to many, but if I overload myself I tend to get less done.

  • Sheila in Alabama September 05, 2017

    Mable, what a wonderful accomplishment losing all that weight! I'm sure you can reverse the weight gain with a few adjustments to your diet!

  • Marivene September 05, 2017

    Brandy, when the cows across the fence ate down our peach tree & our apple tree, I thought both of them were dead. They had eaten the peach tree down to the trunk. It was only 4 years old, & no new leaves sprouted, etc. I was sure it was dead. So sure, in fact that I planted two Red Haven dwarf peach trees, one within 3 feet of the "dead" peach tree. The next spring, the tree came back, & the next year we picked nearly a bushel of fruit from it. This year we picked 3 1/2 bushels of peaches from it. Even if you are sure the tree is dead, I would give it a year. I was pretty happy to be wrong about mine, & I ended up having to move the baby tree Implanted too close to it.

  • Brandy @ The Prudent Homemaker September 06, 2017

    Marivene, it was ridden with borers and we thought we were going to have to take it out last year when we had to take off a huge number of dead branches. It died several months back and there is no question that it is gone. I also lost a new cherry tree (which is within warranty) that I planted to replace my plum that died last year. The heat came and burned the tree, but the branches were still pliable and a few leaves sprouted at the base. I figured it might recover this fall--but then those leaves died, and now it is dry as can be. We lost two other cherry trees previously in another spot (due to a leak in the water box of one day each time; the type of valve connector cracks in our heat) and I replaced them with an apricot this spring that grew amazingly well.

    Unfortunately, apricots and peaches are only supposed to last about 10 years here, according to the classes I took from the extension service. The peach was very sickly this year and this year was my trial to see if it would make it. It barely produced and the handful of fruits it made were dark inside. The tree has been in for 10 years.

    Oddly enough, my other peach tree in back started doing the same thing just a couple of months later (large branches suddenly dying) so I don't know if I will have to take that one out as well; I am watching it.

    And my large apricot, which usually gives me tons of fruit, did not even flower this year!

    My largest concerns are the following:

    Water issues where the peach tree died. I also lost two rose bushes in that section. Unfortunately, I also lost two new rose bushes in the other section where the other peach is too. But it was very hot this year very early on. These were my replacement bushes from the ones that died the previous year (and I planted them in different spots even) so those are a total loss.

    My large apricot may be going, or it may just not have received enough chilling hours last year. We're supposed to have a hotter than usual next two months, which makes me wonder if winter will be too mild and we won't get enough chilling hours.

    The spot where the plum died (same deal; branches just started dying off last summer) and now had the cherry die could have a soil problem. Or, it could have just been that the plum was unhealthy and the brand-new cherry burned; they are prone to that here. I am considering replacing it with a self-fertile almond, but I worry about the soil. I want to bring in new soil there as much as possible.

    I knew they could be a problem after 10 years, but I had hoped to keep them healthy enough to prevent that. It looks like 10 years may just be their lifespan. I don't know if I'll have to take out the other peach as well; that would be a shame, as we then won't have any peaches for 3 to 4 years, save for the ones from the smaller tree in front (and that tree has to stay small because of where it is at).

  • Marivene September 06, 2017

    Brandy, our oldest daughter had problems with borers. She killed them by laying tobacco leaves around the base of the trees. The nicotine kills the borers somehow. She stopped at one of the local smoke shops & asked if they had any loose tobacco, explaining why she wanted it, & they laughed at her & gave her the tobacco leaves that were the packing for some fancy Cuban cigars, for free. I also know that tobacco mosaic virus can be a problem for tomatoes if it gets in the soil, but if your trees are far away from your tomatoes, it might be a free solution to the borers. I know when they get in the soil, they can be difficult to kill.

  • cathy September 07, 2017

    Marivene, do you have any idea if planting nicotiana around the base of stone fruit trees would help deter borers? Or does it need to be harvested/dried tobacco? I haven't grown nicotiana in years, but in SLC it was always grateful for a bit of shade.

  • Marivene September 10, 2017

    cathy I have no idea.

  • Riley September 06, 2017

    So happy to get to participate this month!
    - take the kids apple picking (with the camera of course!)
    - practice taking more photos: still trying to get better with my camera
    - use up what we have in our freezer and rotate in new food
    - figure out what to get and or make my husband for his birthday
    - start looking for a new job for July (after I finish my post graduate training)
    - figure out a cleaning schedule for this season of life we are in
    - participate in a few more surveys
    - box up clothes for thredup. I've never done it before but it seems simple. I already took a few of the nicer items and listed them on eBay.
    - try to remember to charge my phone and iPad at work

  • Cindy in the South September 06, 2017

    Baby Octavius is so cute! I have to travel to see sick relatives, so I cannot reduce my gas bill. I am eating more bean and rice dishes, and more soups.

  • Pattie F. September 06, 2017

    Your youngest is just beautiful! He looks angelic. :)

    This month my goals are all about decluttering and storing water, both of which are a bit overwhelming to think about.

    I hope everyone has a wonderfully productive month!

  • Roberta in So. Cal. September 06, 2017

    Oh my goodness. Look how big Octavius is getting! What a cutie.

  • Athanasia September 06, 2017

    What a nice picture of your youngest son. Very handsome and lovely eyes.

    My goals are only to finish the harvesting, can it up and then rest. Now is the busiest with tomatoes and corn, grapes, our first harvest of peaches. Then right behind are the apples.

    Our younger son's wedding is coming up 11-4 but we do not have as much work to do as was with a daughter. Our middle girl Johanna will be in the wedding as she became a good friend of Christy while she lived in that town for school. Our oldest boy will be in the wedding also. The wedding will not be elaborate, but it will be large. Their church does as ours does with an open invitation to the church family to attend.

  • Cindy in the South September 07, 2017

    The wedding sounds like fun! I love to visit with family!

  • Becky September 06, 2017

    My September goals are pretty simple:
    --Get homeschool off to a good start. I still had a couple of things to gather, and they are in the mail, or purchased now. There are going to be more library trips this year, as we are utilizing the library more this year instead of buying it all, so ordering from there will continue throughout the year.
    --I'm right there with Athanasia--I've got to get the harvesting done and preserved. I picked a big box of tomatoes this morning, so those will be canned in the next few days. My family processed some corn for me over the weekend while I was on my anniversary trip--so nice of them. I still have beets to pick and pickle, purple and yellow beans that are still producing, a few more potatoes to dig, and more tomatoes to do. I have peppers to pick (not many--kind of a disaster there), and hopefully will make salsa.
    ---Get the garden cleaned out, another planting of lettuce planted, replant the spinich for the 3rd time (it's been too hot for it to sprout), try to find some onion starts if they are out there, clean out the strawberries, cut out the dead vines from the raspberries and blackberries, tie up the Marion (black) berry vines that have grown over the summer. Weed around the berries. Tie up raspberries. Use up any veggies that grow. I have several things planted for fall--so weed around, pick and use them as they get ready.
    ---Try several recipes from magazines I have on hand, especially choosing ones that use ingredients I have. Plan menus. Cook them. Since I am scheduled to work away from home from 2-6, 3 days per week, I need to plan it out so that the Crock Pot is utilized, or things are cooked ahead. It's a little better than last year--I've rearranged things so I will come directly home every evening except one, so with planning, I won't be eating at 8 or 9 like I did last year sometimes. Even though it's not my favorite schedule in the world, it works for us because I can home-school all day, still have dinner with the family at 6:30, and earn a little money.

    I have already made the Basil Chicken from the current issue of Cooking Light and it was wonderful. I did modify it a bit by making only one batch of the basil sauce, marinading the chicken in all but about 1/4 cup of it, and then just keeping that 1/4 cup as a sauce, instead of making the sauce again. It would have been way more sauce than my family would eat and tasted wonderful with the marinade on it, and just a little extra sauce drizzled on top. We had it with grilled veggies and grilled garden potatoes. I also made some white rice because I was in a hurry. Today, we tried Sweet Potato and Red Lentil Curry from the same issue of Cooking Light, without the pickled red onion or the rice. I cooked it in the crock pot and it turned into more of a soup than anything. I had some red lentils in the pantry, some sweet potatoes I was given, and a can of coconut milk, so that's why I chose that one. It was warm and comforting. I served it as a soup, and had hot dogs and cut up veggies on the side. (Strange, I know, but everyone was happy that way).
    --We need to go get our wood from my sister's house before the fall rains start. We have a large pile up there and probably won't have to buy any. We have to get it load by load in the back of our van, though, since we sold our trailer, so it will take a couple of days. (We will take out the 2 back seats and line it with a tarp)

  • Cindy in the South September 07, 2017

    The red curry soup sounds delicious, and so does the Basil Chicken!

  • Heidi September 07, 2017

    Restock pantry!
    Finish garden and fruit tree harvesting and keep an eye on temps; cover hardy greens like kale and collards as needed.
    Finish any necessary clothing, shoe, school purchases by end of this week and then...No Spend September!
    Create a driving/gas schedule for the three people who leave our house each day for work and college classes.
    Get that wood stacked!
    Good luck to all of us this month!

  • Heidi September 07, 2017

    PS...What a beautiful picture of your big boy!

  • Astrid September 09, 2017

    Coucou de France, from Paris

    Vos enfants sont très beaux....j'aime votre blog. Merci pour votre expérience.

    Prenez-soin de vous.


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