Saturday, 2 November 2013

November

Today is a typical November day.   One minute it is raining, misty and dark - the next it is sunny and there is a sharp South east wind blowing.   I have just been for a walk in the fields with the farmer and the sun on our backs was really warm.   Now we are just back in time to miss a sharp shower and a very black sky.

Luckily I managed to catch a few photographs in sunlight.

Hawthorn berries hang like heavy beads on the hawthorn trees.   Any day now the fieldfares will arrive and begin to strip them away - in a day they will all be gone.

In the fields the Swaledale sheep graze.   There is plenty of grass for them and they will stay there all Winter.   A hardy breed, bred for the tops of the hills and only coming down to lower land in the Winter, they do not flourish inside and need to be out in the open to keep healthy.

On the blackthorn bushes the sloes hang heavy.   I still have plenty of sloe gin left from years ago so they are going to waste - I expect the birds will eat them eventually if it is a bad Winter, although they are bitter and not enjoyed on the whole.

The milking cows are already in for the Winter, perhaps being let out to the field next to their Winter housing on nice days and always in at night and being fed cattle feed and silage as there is little or no goodness left in the grass and the farmers need to keep up a good diet in order to get maximum milk yield.   But the young 'bulling heifers' - young female herd followers who will be out to AI in the early Spring are still out enjoying the last of the sunshine and helping to build up their strength and hardiness.

Leaves are falling rapidly now, particularly on the ash trees.   We have many of these in and around our fields and I think of the possibility of losing them all in a few years to ash die-back, which is already attacking the trees in some parts of the country, and I am saddened at the thought that they might all disappear.




Out to a local pub for my birthday Sunday lunch tomorrow - so nothing to cook - that is a nice bonus.

11 comments:

JoAnn ( Scene Through My Eyes) said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
JoAnn ( Scene Through My Eyes) said...
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psobrien said...

The berries are so RED!!! I watched "Victorian Farm" on BBC YouTube where Ruth Goodman made sloe gin. Yum!
Sandy @ My Yellow Swing

Elizabeth Wix said...

Super new header!
Especially loved the sheep and cow pictures.
Have a super lunch tomorrow.

Arija said...

Wishing you a very Happy Birthday and a wonderful year ahead Pat. I am sorry to hear of the Ash blight. After Dutch Elm disease, no it is the turn of the poor ash. As was predicted a good 30 years ago, the trees will die out species by species. In America it is the pine beetle wiping out whole forests, in Australia we still have elms but our native River Redgums are so stressed by the diminishing groundwater that they are open to large scale insect infestation. I am glad I will not be around to have to mourn the absence of all these beautiful trees.

Hildred said...

Have a wonderful birthday Pat, - my very best wishes for happiness and good health. The pictures are sweet.

Edwina said...

Well, happy birthday and enjoy your lunch. It amazes me that the sun is still so warm, when you get out of the biting wind that is. Sitting in the conservatory, having morning tea, warm sun on my back, watching birds and waiting for the morning visit of a neighbours' tabby.... perfick! Oh, and the smell of Sunday lunch in the oven adds to the perfick-ness.

Twiglet said...

Happy birthday!! Hope you have a lovely birthday lunch. Just wondered if you know about magpies/cattle - see my Friday smile. x Jo

Barbara said...

Wonderful pictures of a beautiful fall season!Love the sheep and cows.
Hope you have a lovely birthday lunch.

Linda Metcalf said...

Have a wonderful day out and Happy Birthday! Your photos are colorful and so pretty.....

mrsnesbitt said...

We all deserve a meal out on a birthday! Happy Birthday Pat! xx