Tag Archives: Autumn

August: Garden update

We are definitely having an early autumn this year. Leaves are already beginning to turn and blackberries are ripening. While the summer seems warmer than last year, these last few weeks have been showery with very few dry or really warm days. In the garden, we’re enjoying the first plums and apples but like last year the pears have a very bad case of scab and are splitting and seem inedible. Not sure if this has been exasperated by the damp and often humid weather.

The weather has definitely brought on the potato blight, which we get each year. But this year the potatoes did go in on time and those we have harvested are a good size. Cabbages too are appreciating the plentiful rain and where not ravaged by slugs, snails and caterpillars are getting big.

Runner beans have done much better than last year too. Not sure if it is because I got them in early and they had a couple of warm, dry weeks in May to get well established.


Interestingly the courgettes outside are doing better than the one in the polytunnel or greenhouse. The older plants have established much better.

Bumblebee pollinating courgette

Bumblebee pollinating courgette

Carrots again failed to germinated well and / or were eaten by slugs! The same with beetroot, which last year I grew in modules before planting out. I must remember this for next year!  Squash, are small and will probably not come to much. I feel that each year you need to grow a variety of vegetables and then hopefully something will do well!

Mini squash

Mini squash!

So is growing your own vegetables and fruit a sign of “thrift” – defined by the Oxford dictionary as “the quality of using money and other resources carefully and not wastefully”?

November light

At this time of year, with the sun low in the sky I find you get a different kind of light. In the conifer plantation just down the lane from us, the sun penetrates through the lower branches, highlighting the rich, green moss. The moss and ferns only grow where they get enough light – like here where some trees fell over in last year’s storms.

The drains are full after all the rain and they reflect the low light too, as do the fallen bronze larch needles. I love the way they create patterns in the water.

Around the edges of the wood where birch and larch predominate, there is always more light, but the late afternoon sun gives an almost warming glow.

Last of the autumn colours

November is continuing mild, but the dark evenings are a reminder that we are in part of the year that the old Celts called Samhain.

Oak leaves

Oak leaves

Some of the trees have already lost all their gloriously colourful leaves. And this year the colours seems to be particularly bright and colourful. So here are some of the last of the colours to enjoy.