What to Look for in Nature: May

Marvellous May. Certainly one of my favourite months of the year, and the month that usually forms the bridge from spring into summer. True summer is a few weeks off yet, coming around the summer solstice in mid-June, but May gives us a glimpse of those deliciously scented, warm sunny days that enchant us. This …

SFN Journal – Autumn Almanac: Windblown and Washed Out

I have fallen behind somewhat with this seasonal diary, drifting off in a similar fashion to the way autumn is sinking into the soil under the weight of winters approach. After the first flush of inspiration that came on the winds that turned the leaves to crisp flowerings of golden hues, I have been feeling …

SFN Journal – Autumn Almanac: The Day The Sky Turned Autumn

Monday afternoon had everybody talking. It was that same old topic that British folk are famously obsessed with - the weather. When it comes to weather, the ability of our island's maritime climate to bring four seasons in one day means we tend to think nothing can surprise us. I'm not sure where I first …

SFN Journal – Autumn Almanac: Autumn is ageing

6am. The morning has yet to break, the sky still darkened and unrevealing. A robin has just set up a brave solo from the half-leafed wayfarer tree beyond the bedroom window. Once daylight pulls apart the lingering night the morning will be chilly, and a damp film will cling to any exposed surface. By mid …

Summer Adventure – Wild Rose Country

Alberta, Canada Canada. It seemed a world away. Amp had been several times of course since his parents emigrated in 2008, but I hadn't travelled further than a school trip across the channel to France, in my entire 25years! Many people found this lack of tourism hard to comprehend, their holiday memories being filled with …

SFN Journal – Autumn Almanac: A Sweet Utterance

I have finally seen the bullfinches. All summer long I have heard their whistles from the long hedge that runs parallel to one of the glasshouses (of the plant nursery where I work) but they have remained elusive and disembodied. Today a movement in the bushes attracted my attention as I headed out on my …

SFN Journal – Autumn Almanac: The Snail Bone-Yard

It's been days since I heard the Swifts. July was washed away in a week of heavy showers, and the rain seems to have rinsed the cloud-cutters from the sky. Perhaps they have left us already; they are after all the first summer migrants to head south to their winter quarters. It does seem odd …