We're in the process of getting things put away for the winter - the deck furniture, lawn mowers, gardening tools, etc., and yesterday I brought in two Christmas cactus plants that had spent the summer hanging in the grape arbor. I had a feeling the nights were getting too cold for them, and I was right - they were somewhat water-logged and I'm not sure they'll make it. They don't like being soggy and cold any more than I do. I wish I'd checked them sooner . . .
In the process of gathering the plants, I noticed a fairly large pile of bear scat in front of the grape arbor. The grapes haven't done well this year, so perhaps leaving a "calling card" was bruin's way of showing his disappointment. I'm glad the grape crop was not good - if it had been, our old rustic arbor would no doubt be in shambles. There are still plenty of apples and choke cherries for the bears, deer, turkeys and various other critters.
He's trimmed out other spots and it's looking really nice. He also cut out bushes by our mailbox (see above) so we can now see it from the house. There were some fall flowers in there he didn't know about - they hadn't flowered yet - but that's ok, they and the lupines will come back next year, I'm sure. Slowly but surely, we're getting ready for winter. That's what's nice about fall - the cooler weather gives us a push to get things done before snow flies.