By Danielle French

Wait… I’m Not Ready for Snow

The cold seemed to arrive quickly this fall. I’ve been thinking that we are still going to get some nice warm fall days, but then I realize that it’s actually the end of the November and next weekend is American Thanksgiving. I’m not sure there will be much of an Indian summer to come. Not to mention, we’ve had snow!

I love Thanksgiving and I’m thrilled to be able to enjoy two of them. My parents, brother and his family live in the U.S., and while it’s not always possible to take the girls out of school, pile into a car and drive nine hours, we try to do it as often as we can. The timing of American Thanksgiving has always baffled me—the time of bounty is actually much earlier. Who decides these things?

We are hard pressed to find much more in the garden other than a squash, some kale and a few lingering herbs. Don’t get the wrong impression; my garden this year was especially plentiful. I had 72 heirloom tomato plants, many of which found themselves in the roasting pan and then the freezer. So many onions, beets and peas that I felt like I could never keep up. It was only last weekend that Luke got the stakes out of the freezing ground and managed to pulled out the last bit of vegetation. I just bought some flower bulbs, but I think I may need a pickaxe to put them in. I need just one more week of 10-degree weather to get caught up!

If the warm days don’t come back, then I’ll just have to make do with the way things are. There is still a real beauty about how the plants look, crispy and stiff on the ground. I find that leaving a few stalks gives me something to look at during the winter months. (I don’t really like a tidy, ploughed-under garden anyway!) What’s always a joy is to uncover some herbs that push through the frost, like sage still fragrant and available to be used in the Thanksgiving stuffing. I’ll be sure to take a few sprigs down with me next week.

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Danielle French - Ash Naylor Photography

About Danielle

Looking for a simpler way of life for her four daughters and herself, Danielle moved from Toronto to this farm in the Bethany Hills of Southern Ontario, and over time together with her family and her partner Shawn, restored the barn, the iconic heritage silo and the land.

Danielle loves to create unique settings and menus for the many events she offers at South Pond Farms, such as authentic farm-to-table gatherings, bread-making workshops, culinary classes, and weddings. Danielle’s vision is to inspire others to share her vision of a traditional life and way of cooking and to feel the sense of history on this beautiful land.  

Danielle was also the host of a television series called Taste of the Country

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