Saturday, 17 September 2011

Mid September - Forest Fruits

Out on the Forest this week, the fruits of late summer are ripening. Migrating birds are flying through, from north to south, towards their passage across the English Channel. Often, they will stop to feed in the woods, the heathland and over pastureland. The countryside is full of seed, fruit and insect life. Yesterday, I stood in the field watching swallows and housemartins, in a flock of a hundred or more, swoop over the old oaks in the hedgeline and skim across the wet grass, searching for food on the wing.

Out in the lane, blackberries, or brambles, are ripening late this year. Masses of red and black berries are high up on the hedgetops, out of human reach but in a perfect place for feeding birds and sucking insects. Red Admiral and Speckled Wood butterflies search out over-ripe , black fruit to sup the dark juice.


Lower down, the blackberries are small, hard and woody this year.


Late honeysuckle has scented the air on summer nights and shows a few bright flowers in the hedge.



Rosehips....


...and small, red wilding apples from a tree on the heath.


A rabbit or a squirrel has found this fallen fruit.


Some of the old wilding trees are covered with tiny, sour green crab apples.



The moorland heather, or ling, is over now, but bell heather still blooms in sheltered places.....


....and on a few grassy ridges in amongst the wilting bracken.


At the edge of the woods, silver birches are in dark, late summer green leaf.



Among the birches is the reddest, loveliest wilding apple, swaying its laden branches in the wind and dropping shining fruit for birds and animals on the woodland path below.






11 comments:

The Weaver of Grass said...

What a beautiful post DW celebrating the fruits of Autumn - and lovely pictures to go with it. We still have plenty of swallow and house martins up here to send down your way before the migration has ended.

Toffeeapple said...

Lovely! Shall you do anything with the wild harvest?

angryparsnip said...

What a lovely post today.
I love seeing how so very different your fall is from mine.
The last photo is wonderful !

cheers, parsnip

WOL said...

what a lovely color of purple the bell heather blooms have, and nice red wilding apples.

Crafty Green Poet said...

beautiful photos! I love this time of year...

Karen said...

It is rare to see an orchard here in the Piedmont of North Carolina, but along with the Christmas tree farms, there are so many orchards in the mountains that it creates bumper-to-bumper traffic in the fall.

Morning's Minion said...

What a beautiful place to walk and observe the shifting of the season into autumn.
Thank you for sharing it in words and lovely photos.

Bovey Belle said...

What a lovely post. I can't wait to come and gather some of the wild harvest myself soon!

My Spotty Pony said...

Lovely pictures. I love the colours of autumn. The Swallows nesting inside the porch of our village church left last weekend... just enough time to clean up for the Harvest Festival yesterday!

ted and bunny said...

I just came over from Abby's (Spotty Pony) blog, fascinated by the title of yours.
Such beautiful photos- It was like being amongst the trees.

Our housemartins and swallows are still hanging around but guess they'll be off any time soon.

Hope to pop back againx

Isabelle said...

These are very pretty and season-of-mists-and-mellow-fruitfulness-like. But your trees in the previous post - argh! A bit alarming...