Tag Archives: Sloes

This year’s Autumn Fruits walk beats the weather – but Abigail and James steal the show

On 16 October I ran the fourth (I think) Autumn Fruits nature walk around and through Hillhouse Wood, near West Bergholt.  The fact that I am able to make this statement is a slight surprise, because the previous evening’s weather forecast had heavy rain bang on the time of the walk, and light rain for an hour either side.  On which basis I had anticipated being on my own. Continue reading

The 2014 berry and nut harvest on my local patch

Over the last couple of years I’ve been leading a walk around our local wood to show people the various fruits that our plants, shrubs and trees produce.  Coupled with participation in the now defunct BTO Winter Thrushes survey, this has brought home to me how this ‘harvest’ can vary from year to year.

So how’s 2014 looking?  Continue reading

Why do certain plants produce berries?

Berry bearing shrubs and trees are one of the delights of the countryside in autumn, providing colour and interest as the flowers fade away.  They attract birds and mammals by providing a source of food, helping them to survive the winter.  Which is great for the birds and mammals, but begs the question ‘What’s in it for the plants?’  After all, producing all those berries requires a great deal of energy on the part of the plant, so why do they go to all this trouble? Continue reading

Autumn Fruits Foray around Hillhouse Wood, Colchester

In the odd moment I get when not counting the vast profits we’re making from the Naturetale app, or planning where to buy the next of my country retreats, I volunteer for the Friends of Hillhouse Wood.  On the basis that everyone else ‘took a step back’, I have found myself leading wildlife walks around the wood. Last Saturday I led a new one for us. Continue reading