WITH CRISP mornings and big piles of golden leaves, we finally wave goodbye to the last of the summer this month, and say a big hello to autumn.

Why do you love autumn? Whether it's enjoying a walk in a spectacular landscape of autumn colour or spending time with friends and family jumping in fallen leaves, there are plenty of reasons to love this time of year.

The nights begin to get longer, and we start to think less about salads and more about heart food - and luckily our vegetable plots are thinking along the same lines.

Pumpkins (not just for carving) are members of the same family as the squash, the cucumber and even the melon.

Here are some other super facts about this Halloween favourite:

The largest pumpkin ever grown weighed in at a colossal 1,689lb

Squash are technically a fruit, but probably taste better as soup than served with custard

Antarctica is the only continent that pumpkins can't grow in

Looking beyond pumpkins, other goodies from the garden this month include cox apples, runner beans, blackberries, brussel sprouts, spring green cabbage, white cabbage, savoy cabbage, red cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, celery, kale, leeks, marrow, potatoes, spinach, squash and sweetcorn.

Just because the veg growing season is slowing down, it doesn't mean it's time to hang up your wellies for the winter. The big (and exciting job) for this month is to collect up your harvest.

Why stop at the garden? Head out to the hedgerows to grab yourself some blackberries which are a welcome addition to any apple crumbles you may find yourself eating this month.

Autumn also plays host to one of our favourite half term events - Halloween. With its ruined and derelict wing, musty smell and dark rooms, East Riddlesden Hall can certainly feel spooky, especially at this time of year.

The original part of the existing house was built in the 1400s but it's believed that there was something on the site going back to Saxon times.

It would stand to reason that there have been many births and deaths here, and over the 80 years that people have worked here with the National Trust there have been various ghost stories told.

Children have been heard singing in the house by staff, a single swing moving on its own, objects being mysteriously moved overnight and lone footsteps overhead have been heard by three separate members of staff when locking up the house.

So, are you brave enough to visit us during half term? We’ve got clues in our spooky house so you can discover Whodunnit in our Cluedo style children’s trail. There is an outdoor natural colour hunt and hobbit house in the garden ready to explore too.

East Riddlesden Hall is open Saturdays to Wednesdays between 10.30am and 4.30pm (last admission at 4pm). General admission prices apply; however entry is free for National Trust members and under fives.

Visit nationaltrust.org.uk/riddlesdenhall orcall 01535 607075 during office hours for further information.