Early in the Wood

Yesterday morning I got to the garden early to finish some paperwork in the shed. Tired after a busy weekend away camping along the Pembrokeshire coast, and finding it hard to concentrate, I decided to have a look at how things were going up in the small patch of woodland at the top end of the garden. A regular walk around the garden is an important practice and helps you keep everything in perspective, however, like so many gardeners, I often end up finding an excuse not to do it and turn my attention to some other job that needs doing. So it was nice to put aside a bit of time just to wonder about and take things in again.

The morning light was bright, showing through all the various greens and there was even a very slight frost lingering on the wood floor. It felt surprisingly Autumnal walking along the paths. I noticed quite a few changes that had taken place quietly in my absence- mushrooms on the chippings, brand new fox holes and fruits developing for the first time on the young sweet chestnuts. Overhead in the robinias a pair of crows were calling to each other, along with a solitary magpie from behind the old wall; all projecting the familiar sounds of Autumn, even more so once the trees lose their leaves and the sound is reverberated further. A pair of nuthatches were also scrambling up and down one of the taller black locusts; for a non-migratory bird it’s funny how they seem to disappear completely after Spring each year and return to view in the Autumn. Can’t imagine where they go.