Monday, 20 October 2008

Autumn walk

When ever I go for a walk when I up in the Cotswolds doing gardening for my Mum, I always go the same way. This last week I decided to go in the opposite direction for a change.
Here are some of the sights I noticed on this lovely autumnal walk.

Black Bryony - It's not immediately obvious why this plant is called black as the berries are conspicuously red! In fact its name comes from the colour of its fleshy roots. It is a member of the yam family, but its roots and berries are poisonous. It has the most gorgeous large and shiny heart shaped leaves which unfortunately aren't showing up at this time of year.

A break in the dry stone wall leading into the beechwoods, possibly used by a badger.

Elderberries - The Elder is one of our most used hedgerow shrubs even today. In June, the flowers are often cut to make Elderflower cordial and at this time of year the deep purple berries are made into a rich dark wine.

A path through the trees which I wasn't able to resist.

An autumnal view.
Fleeing sheep - was this because I hadn't had a bath for a week and they were downwind??? (-:

A view of their pasture.
I think I'll go on this walk again..........


Mosura said...

I enjoyed the virtual walk. Looks like a nice spot.

Eve said...

That was a great walk!!! That forest path looks so much like the one I walked at my cousins house it's uncanny!! Did you apoligize to the sheep?? I'm glad you took a different route! Wonderful!

Quiet Paths said...

Oh, I don't think I could resist those green and leafy paths either. They look idyllic and your narrative was delightful. I love those elderberries. My Mom used to make syrup for pancakes and waffles -- yum. Great post, Jenny. PS: thank you for your kind words yesterday on Full Spectrum.

Jenny said...

Hi Alan, thanks, it is a lovely area up there.

Hey Evie, yes I was reminded of your forest walk photo when I looked at mine on the comp too. Nope, I did not say sorry to the sheep I just muttered 'mint sauce' to them instead! (-:

Hi Christine, I've never used Elderberries myself, but I have made Sloe Gin with Mum. Makes a fantastic Christmas tipple. (-:

Mary said...

Wow..I wish I had a great walk with all that wonderful stuff to see! I like your new header ...such an interesting angle. All those berries look wonderful in photos, even if the first are poisonous. Love the sheep! Maybe they leaked through that break in the stone wall :-) I think I would rather than them fleeing than running at me! This is a super post!

Anonymous said...

That walk looks fabulous Jen. Some great images.
I cant believe you haven't bathed for a week though.

Jenny said...

Hi Mary, thanks for that, it gives a different perspective to get down low to take a photo for a change. I don't think the farmer would like it if the sheep used that dry stone wall gap, it was further done the lane in the beech wood luckily.

Hi Roy, artistic license used there! (-;

Adrian said...

Hey Wren

Great shots. I lovel Black Bryony and as you know there is tons of it around at the moment. It is unfortunate that the leaves go off as the berries are coming into their peak condition. Like the new header shot too!

See you soon, Adgi

Quiet Paths said...

Hmmm, you wouldn't mind sharing that recipe for the tipple? Maybe? Pretty please? *grin*

Jenny said...

Hi Christine,
Here's the simple recipe, like most thing simple, it's good! (-:
1 lb of Sloes (Blackthorn, Prunus spinosa)
3-4 oz Granulated Sugar
1 normal sized bottle of Gin (70cl)
Almond Essence (optional)
Clean Sloes and prick. Put in screw top jar, add sugar, gin and essence if used. Screw tightly and leave in dark place for 3 months. Shake occasionally. Open up and strain until clear. Re-bottle and enjoy! Improves with age!
PS: My eldest brother did this same recipe with raspberries.

Quiet Paths said...

Thank you so much, Jenny! I think raspberries would be amazing. Elderberries are more difficult to come by but I have lots of raspberries.