Summer is dead to me. I don’t care if temperatures still allow me to wear shorts and a tank top and take a dip in the pool at the end of the day — I have no desire. And with the blessing of the official equinox in place, there’s no more heatwave happenings in this household — I’m declaring all things fall starting immediately. To be clear, September, October and November are my primary love languages. 

Christmas is much beloved for a different set of festive reasons, but autumn is like a big furry blanket for my soul. The cozy cardigans, falling leaves, and the vanilla chai latte that is forever in my hand lift my spirits in a way that no other season’s accoutrement can. 

Give me crisp 75-degree days and nights just chilly enough to enjoy an evening by the outdoor fireplace, and I don’t need much else. 

Autumnal desires of my heart known, it shouldn’t be a surprise that decorating for said superior season would be a top-of-the-list priority for our family. I tend towards being a purist — fall décor over Halloween décor. Harvest decorating is timeless, soothing, and warm. What’s better than a collection of multi-hued pumpkins and gourds, a bale of hay, and texture-rich corn stalks, accented by bold displays of blooming mums? It’s like a symphony for the eyes. My children would say nothing would be better than a life-size spider scaling the exterior walls of our house and actual bats in our belfry (if we had a belfry, that is). Obliging mother that I am, we compromise. 

Somewhere around Sept. 15 every year, my benevolent husband starts lugging large orange and green plastic tubs labeled “FALL” into the house so I can open all the lids and separate the bats and skeletons from the leaf garlands and acorns. Piles perfected, we head out to the pumpkin patch to find the anchor to creating our seasonal masterpiece. Firm believers in “more is more,” give us all the pumpkins and mums and make it anything but big-box boring. 

While there’s something to be said for a traditional basic pumpkin, we love making our rounds and finding the funkiest, coolest gourds this side of the patch to add our standby orange friends. We pile the back of the SUV with as many pumpkins and mums as we can manage (dad has to haul hay bales for us in his truck) and head home to layer and stack our white, yellow, orange, red, and brown varieties all around the front door. During October, I don’t mind adding a gauzy spider web or two, a subtle tombstone in the garden, or an understated ghost accenting the front door. But come Nov. 1, it’s all cornucopias and “thankful” pillows and the witches can hitch a broomstick back to their tub-sweet-tub. Ready to turn your home into a fall playground of your very own? Edmond pumpkin patches are plentiful and primed with loads of unique picks for packing a porch punch. Check out some of my favorite stops for a picture-perfect pumpkin: 

Pumpkin Parish at Southern Hills Christian Church, 3207 South Boulevard, 405-341-0766. This Edmond mainstay is a recognizable fall spot with thousands of pumpkins filling the church lawn every September for the last 23 years. Sales begin when pumpkins arrive on Sept. 29 and go daily from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. until October 31. Special events include a church service in the patch and the annual Pumpkinfest event — both in October. Buy from here knowing that your dollars go to support Habitat for Humanity and various other missions of the church. 

Wings Fall Festival and Pumpkin Patch, 13700 North Eastern Avenue, 405-242-4646. Open every Friday to Sunday through Oct. 13, this weekend option is a pumpkin patch and festival combined with more than 8,000 guests expected over four weekends. Shop hundreds of pumpkins and enjoy bounce houses, hayrides, pony rides, games, and a petting zoo all benefitting Wings Special Needs Community.

Parkhurst Pumpkin Stand, 3300 South Broadway, 405-315-7392. The little brother operation to its agri-entertainment counterpart in Arcadia, this seasonal in-town stand offers a taste of the larger Parkhurst with a hefty variety of pumpkins and gourds in every size. They also carry seasonal flowers and mums, as well as haybales and cornstalks. Be sure to stop by and visit the black pig and bunny onsite. The stand is open daily through Oct. 31 and then gears up for a shift to Christmas trees and fresh garlands and wreaths beginning in November.

Uptown Grocery Co., 1230 West Covell Road, 405-509-2700. Need a great selection and a gallon of milk at the same time? Local grocer Uptown Grocery Co. features loads of pumpkins, squash, and gourds right outside their Covell store. The loads began arriving in mid-September and include all the exotic varieties ranging from tiny handheld accent sizes to the extra-large oversized melons — perfect for adding impact to an expansive front yard or oversized porch. 

Designs by Tammy 2625 West Danforth Road, 405-340-3233. Known around town for beautiful blooms, the longtime Edmond florist expands offerings in the fall with 30 varieties that make up the 10,000 pumpkins and gourds that are available. Naturally, they also sell mums, cabbage, kale, and large and small cornstalks. Look for fun seasonal displays perfect for an impromptu photo op.

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