Aside from that snowstorm we had last week, it's been a beautiful fall in the Inland Northwest.
When there hasn't been snow or tree branches littering the ground, it's been a great time to take long walks or perhaps a bike or scooter ride to enjoy the majesty of the changing season.
However, many people in the Spokane-area might find those long walks turning into stressful swatting sessions. Or perhaps finding the need to pick a bug or two out of their teeth during their bike ride.
Yes, that's right, blue ash aphid season has arrived.
The aphid swarm happens every year as the temperatures get colder.
Master Gardener Tim Kohlhauff told me the aphids spend their spring time feeding on trees and leaves before heading underground to live off of tree roots. But it's when it gets colder outside that the aphids know it's time to leave the ground and go looking for love.
That's what' they're doing right now as you're out trying to enjoy your fall - they're mating.
Kinda gross, huh?
Well, thankfully it should be short lived.
Kohlhauff told me once we get some good, long freezing temperatures, they will die off. However, those eggs that they lay will lay dormant and hatch in the spring, starting the cycle all over again.
You might be thinking, "Cory, we just had snow, shouldn't that have killed them off?"
Well, it may have killed some of them off as the cold temperatures acted as kind of a false start for some to emerge, but as we've seen, there are plenty that survived the first snow and they're going to keep doing what they do in the little time they have left, which is laying eggs.
So hang in there, we've got just a little bit longer before we can take those walks without being bothered by the blue ash aphids.