In the autumn things stop growing. This leaves the farmers standing around with their hands in their pockets. To find something to do they take enthusiastically to tidying up. On our way out on our walk earlier this week we were struck by how spruce and neat everything had suddenly become. Particularly our fields, who had had their hedges done. Short, back and sides all round – and very smart they looked too.
We had become so used to the rather bedraggled look that goes with a year of busy growth, we had quite forgotten how nice the fields look with a little bit of spit and polish. The fruiting season for most of the hedgerow plants is long past so this is really the ideal time for this sort of thing.
Almost all our trees have now dropped, or otherwise disposed of, their leaves. We haven’t had so much wind this year, so lots of them are simply dumped in yellow and gold puddles on the ground. Walking under the trees – down the lane towards the gate – on a still day, you can hear the sound of the gentle rain of leaves trickling down through the branches high above.
The Ash Tree by the village green (in the picture) is a case in point – it’s just gone to bed leaving its clothes lying all over the place. I think it’s hoping the wind will come by and tidy up before it has to get up in spring.