Fruits of the forest
Keats said it best, of course. We have indeed been having hazy, misty days, mellow afternoons of golden sunlight, and a glut of fruitfulness in the garden which has caused me to spend most of today making apple and onion chutney.
Early autumn is the time of ripeness in the woods as much as in the garden, even if we humans notice it less. Many of the trees are heavy now with nuts or fruit of one sort or another. Here are some examples from around the castle for my Tuesday trees: the fruits of the forest, the seeds of future trees and a feast for birds and squirrels before the frost takes hold.
The tall lime trees beside the castle are decorated with the tiny hanging pompoms of their fruit.
This month the fruits will drop from the lime trees, spiralling through the air on brown ‘wings’.
An oak which we planted to celebrate the Millennium has produced acorns for, I think, the first time this year.
The sycamore’s great bunches of keys have turned from green to brown, and are impossible to photograph properly as they rustle in the breeze!
Along the paths in the woods, the straggly elder bushes are covered with glistening berries. I like to use a head or two of them in blackberry and apple crumbles, to add an earthy depth to the flavour. Their leaves have turned a beautiful pink.
The beech trees are bristling with nuts,
and the ground in the woods is strewn with sweet chestnuts, prickly husks peeled back like flowers to reveal the little brown kernels within.
Welcome October: how I love this generous time of year.
You might enjoy My breakfast smells of elderberries!