What to look for in the woods: October

Glorious October

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A glorious, golden, mystical month and sometimes overwhelming . Rich in colour as the sun's smile lights up the ageing canopy and joyful in the continuing wealth of edibles to be had. As summer has ended do the trees weep, their leaves falling as gentle tears, or are they happy at the thought of a well earned forty winks during the coming winter?  

October is a tasty month. There are still berries, nuts and fungi being gifted, not least the Giant Puffball!Having positively identified one from your pocket guide, choose a ball that is white and firm. Peel off the skin of just enough to eat as this will preserve the remainder. Slice into pieces, pop in the pan with butter and turn until golden brown . Fantastic -- even better with a couple of eggs! 

The bird life can at times be a little confusing with lots of comings and goings. The finches and thrushes are arriving and in need of shelter and food after their long journey. Look out for an increase in the Goldfinch, Goldcrest and Siskin population. Interestingly the arrival of Blackcaps occurs as this years breeding pairs and young, move to southern Europe. Carefully study the groups of Redwing as you could well see Fieldfare too. 

Occasionally it is wise to be alone in the woods.... to avoid the habit of distraction. Instead be selfish about your space and focus on concentration. Someone said that it is surprising how much memory is built around things unnoticed at the time. I figure that the more you notice, the more you remember and if during the process of concentration you become lost in the woods, don't worry....just follow a path as it will lead somewhere. 

Published on 1st Oct 2016

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