It’s September and there’s a particular quality to the light this time of year, softer than the harsh sun of mid summer which bleaches the colour out of photos and makes us squint. It’s kinder to the plants in our gardens which we often term now to be fading, as they cease to flower and either seed, berry or shade into the colours of autumn.

The beginning of autumn always used to be tinged with sadness for me, as if nature was losing its grip on life, but nothing could be further from the truth. Nature, the very best of re-users and recyclers and of which our gardens are a small part, is shifting into a different gear and preparing for a lower sun, less light and a much slower pace of life in the months ahead.


But first there is a lot of feeding to be done, all of a sudden my garden is again full of birds, conspicuous by their absence over the summer and with no need of a calendar to know that the year is turning, they are on the move. A delight to watch as I ate my muesli this morning, a flock of lovely little warblers with dozens of blue, great, long tailed and coal tits enjoyed their breakfasts in the apple and birch trees just outside the front door. A very lucky coincidence that we decided to eat at the same time.