Red fox sighting in alfalfa field |

Red fox sighting in alfalfa field

Lisa Welch

The alfalfa pasture had been cut and was waiting to dry a little with no rain in sight. I was the passenger in the vehicle when I gazed out to see the beautiful green field that was making my nose a little itchy just looking at it. There it was just standing next to a row of alfalfa. He had a beautiful bushy orange tail and a skinny snout. He seemed to be as curious about me as I was of him.

I have only seen one other red fox since moving here 12 years ago and that was way down on the river along Sweetwater Canyon. They call them elusive for a reason I guess. I know, where was my camera?

Another member of the dog family has been visiting a lot more frequently as of late, like every morning for the last month. It is the coyote and lots of them. My bedroom window is still open at night because of the warm temperatures so when I hear them they sound like they are right below my window sill. Could that really be? Last night was a little odd because I heard one make a noise, not like yipping and not really howling maybe like a screech like it was startled. A few minutes passed as I noted the bedroom clock said 4:06 a.m. It was several minutes later before I heard another noise again not so common. Was it the treat it found to eat? Was it caught in a fence?

Several more minutes passed before I heard the yipping of the pack like they had found a good meal to feast on and as soon as they were here they were gone, until tomorrow night.

Gardening and Processing

It is close the end of the gardening season and I have run out of friends who like zucchini this time of year so it is time to break out the canning supplies. Here is my recipe:

Zucchini Relish

2 cups grated zucchini

1 cup grated carrots

1 cup chopped yellow onions

1 cup green and red diced bell peppers

2 Tablespoons salt

13⁄4 cup sugar

1 cup apple cider vinegar

2 teaspoons celery seed

2 teaspoons mustard seed

I combine in a large bowl the zucchini, carrots, onions, peppers, salt and cover with cold water in the refrigerator for a couple hours while I run my jars in the dishwasher. I rinse and drain the veggies thoroughly.

Next I grab my stock pot and add the rest of the ingredients and bring to as boil. Then I add the zucchini mixture to the pot and simmer for 25 minutes. It’s time to pack in hot jars leaving a half-inch head space. Place jars in a water bath in boiling water for 25 minutes. I fold two large bath towels and put on the dining room carpet and place the hot jars there for 24 hours.

This recipe is excellent anywhere you would use pickle relish but is particularly great in macaroni salad.

I hope you are having a good end of the gardening season. I’ll be making salsa next.

Lisa Welch is a Johnson Lane resident and can be reached at 267-9350.