Oh dear, I am bad. So much has been going on in the garden, and have I been blogging about it? No. In between working, coping with a crap hand (not of cards, crappy tendon problems, again, boooo-ring) and actually gardening, blogging has been left behind. But so has my birch…
It’s most odd. I was anticipating significant change between August and September, and again between September and October, but it’s not really happened.
The downy birch is just not colouring up, but then neither are my other birches, like the big thug in front of my baby birch here. The area around it has changed, and significantly too: the meadow has been cut. This has allowed other things to appear, like these crocuses
and a rather miscellaneous array of fungi, none of which I can identify as they mostly go brown and slimy before I can get to them with Roger Phillips wonderful photographic guide, Mushrooms.
But apart from that very little has altered. The odd leaf is going brown and one or two are even yellow, but there are still scale insects
sunning themselves when the weather permits. Mind you, there are definitely fewer of these than there were last time.
One thing I have noticed, though, is that the bark of my baby downy birch is most definitely changing colour. When I started following my as-then-unidentified tree, the trunk was still very orange. The majority of the branches (like this one) and the higher parts of the trunk still are a warm orangey brown in colour. But the base of the trunk, right up to the level of the first branches, now has a distinct silvery tone. I’d not realised quite how silvery until I looked again at that top shot – silver with a hint of marmalade, instead of the other way round.
The leaves may not be changing colour dramatically, but they are definitely thinning out:
They are also beginning to dry out and are starting to feel quite crispy when they’re crushed, so maybe there won’t be any left at all by next month.
The grass isn’t covered in fallen leaves, however – a fact I can only ascribe to the gales and storms we’ve been having. I snatched these pictures on a good day. This is why I waited:
…allegedly, a colour photograph. It’s been a bit on the wild side. Already. The birches are fine with that, though. They bend dramatically, flexing with the force of the gales, and then they ping back upright. Occasionally I might lose a minor branch (the big thug has a small one which is brown and dangling, but totally out of reach), but that’s it. They are ideal for my garden, and I clearly need to plant more (I always fancied a grove of perfect white birches, rather like Anglesey Abbey)…