Nature Notes: The Bluster of Autumn

Although the leaves I can see from my office-window are mostly still green, they are beginning to turn orange and yellow at the edges, and the garden below is beginning to disappear beneath fallen leaves. The weather is wetter – a welcome relief after the dry summer – but the temperatures are still fairly mild. It isn’t yet cold enough for either the heating or to close the window at night.

Of course, this isn’t to say that there isn’t still the odd sunny day when I can hang the washing up outside, or when the winter crocuses bloom. We’ve even had some late-ripening blueberries from the bush, and the fig tree has sprouted a couple of little figs. Doubt they’ll ripen properly though, but it gives me hope for fresh figs next summer.

But the weather has definitely turned, and the nights very much drawing in. The mornings, too, are darker, although that ceases to be a problem for solar-powered me now that I don’t have to wake up for work.

Instead, I get to think ahead to Christmas decorations, since M says we have to do something else for an indoor Christmas tree this year: the potted one from last year, after being outside so long, has lodgers. Lots of spiders have made their home in it, and we have enough of those inside as it is without bringing more in. Though we might find some battery-operated outdoor fairy-lights to drape over it.

With the turning weather, though, we’ve put up the bird-feeders again and been pleased to see the return of the various tits and robins to the garden. And, naturally, the squirrels, although so far they seem more interested in the vast quantities of acorns and hazelnuts strewn across the grass and patio. Probably once they’ve done all they can with those they will look to the fatballs.

Hopefully the jays and other birds of last winter won’t be far behind.

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