Twisted Hazel is not very tall but she can still provide many delights
In the olden days they said:
“October extinguished itself in a rush of howling winds and driving rain and November arrived, cold as frozen iron, with hard frosts every morning and icy drafts that bit at exposed hands and faces.”
But nowadays it appears November is mild, calm and continuing Golden – should we pleased or worried?
When this is blended with the angles of the near-solstice sun new illuminations appear
Up above the clouds feather and drift
mirroring the still standing meadow
where Jessie searches for voles
as her hunting ground is slowly diminished
Her tail flag bobs as she explores
Lottie finds a new spot to catch a bit of warmth
Down in Bodger’s Corner the workshop is taking shape
Meanwhile we continue to look for re-purposes
So the Half-Moon is here
and we remember that last time Winter did not properly come until March:
As Golden November continues
and the sun goes down
leaving the sky to the waxing moon
We have been trying to stop the birds feeding.
Not the woodpecker
nor tits and nuthatches
But the hundreds of starlings who visit each day
and devour the poultry feed,
For several months we have been experimenting with some treadle feeders which only open when the fowl step on the approach. They require a training period where they start off propped open, then are half closed, leading to a fully shut position once the birds know the food is there.
The problem has been that the ducks, despite many modifications to the feeder, never got beyond stage 1. So today we shifted that device up to the hen run.
Unlike the over-cautious ducks the naturally inquisitive hens were immediately all over the feeder
They will be able to operate the opening mechanism very quickly.
Meanwhile Clever Clare knows where the corn is and would actually prefer that
The Cayuga ducks are being trialed with a more primitive system
although being brave enough to approach the blue tray, there to catch the fall-out from their messy eating, will take some time.
This system will be a matter of shop open
eat all you can as after a short time it will be shop closed
We have been able to include some of our recycled recycling in that grab handle and also a bit of washing machine as a filling funnel for the treadle feeder
After nearly four years on this patch we seem to have accumulated vast quantities of “it could come in useful some day”. We are trying to do a bit of Autumn sorting.
This is about two percent of the “bits of wood which might be useful” pile
and here is the “gates, fences, flat things and other awkward stuff” stack
These will definitely be useful… someday
Then there is the collection of objects awaiting “re-purposing”:
… just need to wait for the purpose.
Meanwhile, on the culinary front, having had our own glut of apples we are now collecting a neighbours windfalls – for the pigs
For us yesterday – Pease pudding hot
Today – Pease pudding cold
Nine days ago, the spare Cock
Today – with the addition of a leek-y or two
It appears that our local vet now knows what to do when someone brings in a hedgehog.
This Autumn juvenile arrived with us today. Hedgehogs, as with all animals, have a large variation in personality across individuals. The other one we currently have in care refuses to open up in company but this one, as you can see, is the complete opposite.
Weighing in at 253g on arrival it will not be able to gain enough weight to hibernate and will need to be helped throughout the winter and will not be able to go and fend for itself until late April next year
Gently, in this mellow November, the goodness of the closing year is withdrawing back into the Earth
As the no longer needed chlorophyll breaks down,
inner structures are left hanging
Lines of decay spread
Goodness has been stored to pass on to the next generation
or to someone else’s future
If Jessie looks self-satisfied
it is because she has taking advantage of end-of-season life
Other glimpses from today: