Wednesday, 11 October 2017

Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness!!

Autumn is well and truly with us now.   Maybe in towns and cities it is not quite so evident, but here in the countryside the signs are everywhere.

My tall Scots pines, the windbreak close to the prevailing wind side of the farmhouse, are dropping pine cones and pine needles by the thousand.   The pine needles often end up in the guttering of the house;  the pine needles blow up and down the drive, gradually being swept into piles until they are quite easy to gather up.

The cattle - milk cows, beef herds, suckler herds,
fill the fields, eating up the remaining grass now that silaging has finished.   It has been showery for the last few weeks and the grass has grown apace so there will be no need to start on the silage yet and it should last well over the winter, with no shortages. 

Walking down the Lane this morning with Tess I was struck by the dearth of hawthorn berries.  There was plenty of May blossom but now there are none of the swags of ripe berries for the winter birds.   But the rose hips are there, pushing out into the Lane and fully ripe.   I was tempted today to cut some to take with me to my new home - I love them so.   But then I decided that the birds need was greater than mine and I left them to give pleasure where they were.

The rooks go no further during the day than our fields - swooping across them in the strong west wind, landing in the ash trees and complaining to one another about the conditions for flying I suspect.   If you are close enough the noise they make is quite deafening.

There is a feeling that all Nature's creatures are making preparations for the coming of winter - laying in stocks of food, making snug places to spend their time, making the most of any sunny, warmish day.

Oil tanks are being filled, logs are being sawn and stacked (the farmer had a goodly quantity left from last year so the folk coming into the house will start with plenty), all the signs are there.

Now the forecast is for a warm week-end, so let's make the most of it.
 

24 comments:

John Going Gently said...

Glad Tess is still with u

Anonymous said...

Thanks for what might very well be my favorite of all your posts. You created perfect imagery in a lovely descriptive voice.

You csptured and held my full attention with the first sentence, despite this heat, and let go until the end. All in all? Lovely to read here on the patio, in ninety-plus degree temp. (grinning)

justjill said...

Aye indeed. Our neighbour is felling trees. Huge pines. The Starlings are not happy. Nowhere to roost. I expect they will find other places. He didnt like the pine needles. One does wonder why people live in the countryside and then worry about pine needles. But then he has an immaculate lawn.

donna baker said...

Pat, you do make autumn sound like a wonderful time of the year. If only we didn't have to endure the coming winter. And, I did not know birds ate rose hips.

Rachel Phillips said...

The move is imminent methinks.

Joanne Noragon said...

Yes. Our weekend will be warm enough to pull some weeds.

angryparsnip said...

You make the fall day sound lovely.
We desert people are enjoying our Fall after the extreme heat of Summer.

cheers, parsnip

Tom Stephenson said...

Soon is the Winter of our discontent...

Anonymous said...

We have had rain on and off today - we were hoping to paint the windows outside this weekend and I think it might not happen! It has been a wet October so far for us. I noticed that some hedgerows are heavy with berries and some quite sparse. I saw a bottle of rosehip syrup in Lakeland (plastics) at the weekend and it reminded me of the times when we gathered rosehips ourselves and made our own - we were far more time rich back then in the seventies! It must be difficult to have to leave your farming life - you know every sign of change during each season so well I think you should set yourself up as a speaker you would do well speaking to groups and in schools.

Terra said...

I get a true sense of autumn reading your post about what you see. Autumn seems more evident in the country though I see it in the small city where I live too.

jinxxxygirl said...

The birds have stopped coming to the feeder... i think there is plenty of food out there at the moment to keep them happy... The Canadian Geese flew over in their great arrow flocks yesterday ... all day!! I have some pumpkin bread in the oven... one for us and one for the neighbor... tis the season and i'm loving it... Hugs! deb

Cro Magnon said...

I only feed birds when times are hard, but I will soon be buying big sacks of mixed seed for them. May I correct Jinxxxy; I quite expect she's talking of Canada Geese, not Canadian Geese. I felt obliged.

Rozzie said...

Thank you for such a beautifully written post! I almost felt as though I were there!

Derek Faulkner said...

We have a shortage of hawthorn berries here in Kent as well this year and Redwings have started to appear for the winter, so I guess that winter is approaching but it doesn't seem that way. My E-Mail told you about the continuing drought here as well. Last week because it was chilly overnight and my tortoises in the garden were barely moving I put them in the garage with a view to hibernating them shortly, however a few mild days and now a weekend coming up with very warm temperatures, has seen them spring back into activity and so it looks like they'll be going back into the garden for another week or so.

Librarian said...

Autumn is a time of year I like very much. Even though I live in a city, the signs are everywhere - in gardens, on the fields I walk through or ride past on the train to and from work, and of course the light is so different from summer.
It was a particularly beautiful day yesterday, and I was glad that my friend and I had the chance to get together for a run on the fields; soon, it will be too dark for that by the time we finish work.
I love rosehips, too! Plenty of them around, and I always want to cut a branch and put it in a vase at home, but I never do.

Sue said...

A wonderul description of autumn in the countryside. I remember the noisy rooks from my friend's farm, Park Grange.

Bonnie said...

There is magic in your words.

Bovey Belle said...

Not many haws here either, yet normally there are heavy burdens on the trees. I don't know if they are resting, or just not the insects about to pollinate them? It seems a countrywide thing anyway.

I haven't looked for Sloes yet - there are usually some in the hedgerows of our field but the cattle have been out there so I left it until they have gone. I didn't want them getting all curious and "helping" me look!!

Not many rooks round here as the Shoot next door see them off (shoot through the bottoms of the nests). I don't think they affect their young birds at all, but they believe otherwise. There are lots of nests down in the village though.

Derek Faulkner said...

Destruction of Rook nests takes place by people who are ignorant of their feeding habits and who simply lump them in with Crows and Jays who are notorious egg and chick thieves and deserve what controls that they get.
The diet of Rooks is far more insect based, i.e worms, leatherjackets, etc. than the other two members of the corvid family.

Heather said...

I can see leaves and berries beginning to take on colour from the windows of my flat, and there is a lovely crop of toadstools in the grass beside the footpath to the supermarket. Even in town there are plenty of signs of the changing season.
I saw a newspaper headline suggesting that there will be a Halloween heatwave! We'll see.

Lucy Corrander Now in Halifax! said...

This will be my first urban autumn and winter in donkey's years (however many they may be). Outside my window the trees still have green leaves but they have thinned enough to show that the leaves of the trees beyond them are completely gone and their branches are bare.

Frances said...

I really enjoyed that post Weaver.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Thanks for the comments everyone. I knew that Tom would somehow get to make a suitable quip.

RITA LOEHR said...

I don’t remember how I found your blog but have enjoyed it for some time now. I love your descriptive way of writing, and this lovely post made me feel I was right there with you, viewing your lovely countryside. Thanks so much for sharing your surroundings and prayers to you for improved health and transition to your new home.