Saturday, November 7, 2009

Autumn colours

I've been in Wales for so long that the entire area has changed in my absence. There are more leaves on the floor than in the trees, and everything is orange, yellow and brown with only a few silvers and greens picked out in the sun. It was a lovely day today, cold but clear and full of sun-filled light.

There was a limited range of flowers, which was to be expected, but far fewer berries than I had anticipated. The highlight of the entire walk was the first violet of the season. It was absolutely lovely, its open face completely perfect and fresh.

The cherry laurel next to Downtown pond is already recovering after being cut right back.

The new toad moat and butterfly tower still look absolutely dreadful - crude scars in the ecological park, but the plan is that the harsh borders should be allowed to develop natural vegetation so that toads and newts will be attracted to the water and butterflies to the small mound behind. It seems a shame that the trees immediately adjacent to the moat should have been cut down. The raw stumps look awful and it is seems odd that trees in an ecological park should have to be sacrificed, but as usual I am conscious of my ignorance of the management of this type of environment.

There were lots of birds in the shrubberies, but none visible. A Canada goose, several mallards and some coots and moorhens were pottering around on the ponds, all of which were happily full of water. I saw a single squirrel. Apart from that life was very quiet.

There were very few people around but the sad remains of Guy Fawkes night were evident in the form of an abandoned disposable barbeque and some disposable firework settings. I guess that there will be yet more to clear up after tonight.


RC said...

Great photos.

Dr Plokta said...

I've just been for another look, and I'm happy to assure you that the trees near the new pond have not been cut down or sacrificed. They've been coppiced, which means they've been cut back to near ground level. New shoots will grow next year, and the trees will end up shorter, bushier and longer-lived.

Andie said...

Good news, Mike. Thanks.