Early fall in the Texas High Plains brings contradictions.
The 90-degree temperatures of mid-day ease off in the evening to allow folks to sit on patios, pickup truck tailgates, or football field bleachers without fear of heatstroke. Cooling breezes foretell the approach of a new season. Morning provides just a slight nip in the air, not enough to suggest a jacket, only a reminder that summer is almost over. The sky seems bluer, the air feels cleaner. The oppressive heat has waned but is not forgotten—It may return for one more encore before giving way to fall and winter.
Green fields of corn and milo transition to the brown and reds of drying grain. Dust devils whirl behind planters seeding next spring’s wheat crop. Farmers hustle between preparing land to plant; performing last minute maintenance on seeders; making the last pesticide sprays, irrigation applications and herbicide treatments for the season; scheduling harvest aid applications; and evaluating crop maturity to judge the ideal time to dig, cut and strip the 2015 crop.
Early fall, a harbinger of harvest, a time of hope and anticipation comes to the High Plains.