One thing that never alters in farming is the way that the seasons come round and the jobs associated with them. Silage season has begun. If you look in the photograph you will see a pale yellow field in the far distance - that field has already been silaged.
We are a little lower than that and our silaging is about to start this week. To that end the farmer has got his grass cutter out of the implement shed and is just about to overhaul it ready for cutting the first grass later in the week (weather permitting).
One thing about the grass cutting is that some of the ground nesting birds - curlew, oyster catcher, snipe - nest in the fields around here and are just hatching off their young. Those that hatch off in the pastures are in no danger but those that hatch off in the fields cut for winter feed need to get into the hedge-bottom as fast as they can before the cutter goes round. They do tend to move into the hedge bottom as soon as they are hatched - there is more safety there but inevitably some do get killed. I do remember one year in one of our pastures, the farmer put an electric fence round a curlew's nest so that the cows didn't trample it down.
Yesterday the farmer's walk was through protected meadows in Wharfedale. He says the wildflowers were amazing. Here, because of a protection order, the fields may not be cut until late July - when the wild flowers have seeded and the birds have fledged - and the grass is used primarily for hay. Here, in an area of large milking herds, silage is more important.
A friend is moving house and I went to see her this morning. Her garden is absolutely beautiful - I don't know how she can bear to leave it - so I have taken a couple of photographs of it for you to enjoy.