Wild Things in September

September Sunflower and Monarch Butterfly

We’re going to try something a little different for this month of Wild Things. Instead of recapping my families nature explorations throughout the past month, for this post I’m highlighting natural events to look forward to in the coming month. Feel free to share a natural occurrence that’s happening in your neck of the woods. I’m located in the midwest (Lawrence, Kansas to be specific!) and will do my best to make a general seasonal list for North America, BUT if you share a natural event occurring over the next several weeks from your region, not only will other readers from your area be informed, but readers who are from an entirely different environment can learn a bit about a place they aren’t familiar with.



WILD SUNFLOWERS are native to North America and are currently living in their glory days for the year. We live 20 minutes from a stunning cultivated sunflower field that we’ve been enjoying as much as we can the days these beauties are in bloom. Look closely and you’ll see a beautiful double spiral pattern in the flower’s florets– That’s a natural mathematical phenomenon called the Fibonacci sequence. Check out this video from Scientific American that explains a bit about the math behind these enchanting flowers.


THE APPLE HARVEST is in full swing in many places across the country and will be the for many months to come. Visit a local apple orchard or the farmer’s market for a local variety. Take a lazy Sunday to make some homemade applesauce.


SUMAC IS RIPENING and a variety birds can be seen enjoying its seeds, but did you know this plant is an edible for you too? Whip up a pitcher of sumac-ade! It’s quite refreshing and easy to make!


FULL HARVEST MOON — September 16th is the full moon, also known as the Full Harvest Moon. Take a minute to look up– It will be our last full moon of the summer.


THE AUTUMN EQUINOX — September 22nd is the official first day of autumn. This is one of the two days in a year we experience an equal amount of daylight and nighttime hours. After this day the days will be increasingly darker until the Winter Solstice in December. This month notice the drastic difference in daylight from the beginning to the end of the month. The days are growing shorter, up to three minutes less of sunlight a day as the earth tilts further away from the sun.


BUGS, BUGS, AND MORE BUGS! Insects are everywhere lately! Dragonflies, cicadas, katydids, grasshoppers, mosquitos (ugh), ticks (double ugh), and butterflies. So many bugs are laying eggs, mating, and living it up while the days are warm. Speaking of butterflies, the Monarch butterfly migration is currently underway. Keep up with Monarch Watch too see if theses amazing creatures will be visiting you sometime soon.


FALL COLORS will start revealing their hues in the plant life around us. Deciduous trees will start changing colors at the end of the month– Check out this map to see when they’ll turn in your region.


ANTARES, the red star in the Scorpio constellation, can be seen on a clear night this month. Learn more about this glowing ember in the sky and the mythology behind it here .


FEATHERS ABOUND – Many birds have molted or will molt around this time, losing their colorful feathers. This is also around the time they start their southern migration.


What do you enjoy most about this month where you’re from? For me, its the way the land turns gold with sunflowers. I could stare up at those friendly faces for days.

On Instagram? Keep up with our September adventures as amateur naturalists on Instagram.



One Response to “Wild Things in September”

  1. Sarah says:

    I love this because I like to do my storytimes around nature themes and this list will definitely help me fill out my calendar for September.

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