The Changing Seasons ~ This Was November

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Well, we’ve had lots of gloom in Much Wenlock, a morning of fog, twenty four hours of frigid gales, a night-time sprinkling of snow, woken up to some light frosts, and enjoyed a few days of bright sun and clear skies. We’ve also had huge quantities of leaf fall this year, which is always bound to gladden this gardener’s heart. Anyway, I’ll feature the best bits –  November high spots in the garden and out and about on the Linden Field and Windmill Hill.

First, though, some orientation. I know several of you love the Linden Walk, but you may not have a gist of the overall lay of the land. For some reason I’ve not thought to provide it before now. So: in the next photo I’m standing inside the lime tree avenue, intent on capturing the Linden Field to the left, and therefore the position of the old windmill on the hill just above it (and barely visible far left centre because (drat and double-drat) the sun was shining on it). The field was used for the Much Wenlock Olympian Games (started by Dr. William Penny Brookes in the 1850s and still going today) and the hillside below the windmill once provided a natural auditorium for the games’ attendees.

In the foreground is the cricket club pitch (orange fencing) and beyond it the hedged and tree shaded corner of the town’s bowling green.

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Now the old railway line, which often gets a mention here, runs along the right side of the Linden Walk (i.e. looking at photo above). These days all that is left is a deep and tulgey cutting. Dr. Brookes lobbied for the building of the railway to Much Wenlock, and every year a special Olympian Games train was put on to bring thousands of visitors to the field. In the next photo, and turning back on ourselves, you can see the entrance gate. The station stood to the left of the gate, and is now a private house.

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About face once more, and then head up the Linden Walk until your reach the field boundary. Here, running along the base of Windmill Hill is a single avenue of specimen oaks and conifers, all planted over the last 150 years or so to commemorate various Olympian Games events. At this point you can carry straight on and join the old railway path, or turn left for the windmill.

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It’s a bit of a climb, but this ancient limestone meadow is always interesting, no matter the season. Just now the grasses are golden, punctuated with dark stems of knapweed seed heads.

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It’s a favourite spot with dog walkers, and naturally there are some fine views in several quarters:

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Behind the windmill is Shadwell Quarry, long disused and earmarked for development. A somewhat treacherous path runs around the quarry’s perimeter fence, but I like it because, if need be, you can always grab hold of the chain-link fencing, and there are also some handy posts to serve as camera tripods. You get quite a different, almost ethereal view of the windmill from here.

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The wood below windmill hill is another favourite spot. There’s an unexpected copse of beech trees on the hill slope, terrain that, long ago, looks to have been dug into for railway track-bed ballast. Now there’s a mysterious quietness about this spot, and at the moment a stunning beach leaf carpet all around.

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On the home front the garden is descending into vegetable chaos, but the shrubby convolvulus and geraniums Rozanne and Ann Thomson having been flowering boldly, and the crab apple tree on the garden fence is putting on its usual autumn show, pigeons allowing. At the allotment too, the pot marigolds and nasturtiums have flowered and flowered until the recent frost. Up there it’s been a time for tidying away bean vines and sweet corn stalks, making compost heaps and gathering fallen leaves to make leaf mould. With the arrival of frosts I’ve tucked up the polytunnel salad stuff in horticultural fleece, and in the outside beds begun to harvest the parsnips which are all the better for a good chilling. The recent gales have blown over the sprouting broccoli, but it seems to be continuing to sprout on the horizontal, which is making it much easier to harvest. Once I again I omitted to stake the plants securely. Ah well. Next year.

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And finally a little jug of sunshine: allotment nasturtiums and pot marigolds all self-sown, but going strong through most of November:

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The Changing Seasons: November   Hosted by Brian at Bushboys World and Ju-Lyn at Touring My Backyard.

52 thoughts on “The Changing Seasons ~ This Was November

    1. Thank you, A-C. In many ways our English rural landscapes tend to be very domesticated and occupied – compared, I imagine, to Sweden. But there are many footpath systems, prehistoric trackways and medieval pilgrim paths, green lanes, and they link one to another so you can walk for miles in the spaces between farmland and villages.

  1. Beautiful pictures. It would be hard to choose because they are ALL beautiful. I think November is like this with dips into cold and sudden days with warm sun — and the mums that keep growing and oddly, the hedge roses which only died at the end of the month when we had a couple of nights for freezing weather. Just a tiny bit of snow so far and the return of our murder of crows on the same day as last year.

  2. I loved this wrap up of November Tish. the photos are beautiful and the information wonderful. A hikers paradise. Love the garden and flower photos. So glad my garden can do what it wants and only needs watering and of course the non-stop weeding as everything just grows like mad over Spring and Summer 🙂 🙂

  3. Goodness! You’ve some exciting weather, Tish! To a non-gardener, it sounds like very hard work keeping ahead seasonal changes.

    Thank you for the tour around Linden Walk – all your stunning images highlights the expanse of beauty you have access to … I am marvelling, with my mouth open. And ok, just a little envious.

    Wonder if I could clarify: you said “allotment nasturtiums and pot marigolds all self-sown” – I tried to look up what “self-sown” means, but am not sure how these happened.

    1. Lovely to have you visiting my patch, Ju-Lyn. As to my self-sown flowers – they basically seeded from somewhere else and then grew themselves on my plot. I’m very happy that they arrive like this, as I use both in salads. The nasturtiums – usually a summer flower, didn’t appear until the end of the season, and then sprawled several metres over a spot where I’d had beans. A real bonus, though I noticed many of the flowers used their leaves like parasols and were blooming in seclusion underneath.

    1. I’ve got a shrubby white convolvulus out in the roadside front garden. It’s still flowering through several bouts of frost. And one tiny flower on the yellow toadflax, likewise ignoring the cold.

  4. This post makes me so happy. I do miss seeing the seasonal changes and what a lovely spot you have in which to live. I especially love the two shots of the beech trees. And the nasturtiums and marigolds are stunning!

    janet

    1. Hello, Janet. So pleased you liked my autumn ramble. I know it can be very confusing not to have seasonal changes year on year, as well as missing the variety of temps and landscapes.

  5. Heavens, I’m quite out of breath with all that , Tish, but did I spot your very own Olympian tramping up the hill ahead of me? Lovely autumnal shades, hon. I do love your part of the world.

    1. Can’t get much past you, can I? Yep, my own household Olympian was forging ahead of you. For once I was pleased he walked into my shot!
      I reckon with all your seasoned walker’s fitness you would have trotted up the hill and overtaken him.

  6. Nice!
    Showed the leaf covered walk to Celeste. When I mentioned it’s up the road from where you live she replied: Wow, that’s beautiful!
    I’m sure I’ve shown her photos of your spot before, but it’s always a treat to share these images.

    We were smiling last weekend watching some of the soccer being played while it was snowing! And one game was postponed, apparently..
    Winter’s come early over there this year it seems!

    And to think … as I type this the boxers Ella and Baxter are out for the count by my feet , ‘sparko’ in the heat which, according to my phone is now 31c – real feel 34c!

    I’m off to the kitchen for a cheese sarmie and a glass of coke full of ice!
    Snuggle up and keep warm , dear Miss T!
    🙂

    1. Thanks, Ark. Lovely of you bring Celeste along to my neck of the woods. Not so cold here today, just gloomy. I shall ponder on your full-on sun complete with drowsing dogs.

      1. We came home to so many leaves on the lawn – had a marvellous time sweeping them up. Most go straight on the flower beds, made such a difference to the soil.

  7. I love to see your Linden Walk in your photos Tish so it was an interesting exercise to picture the orientation of everything. Such a beautiful area. I remember when I visited England, many years ago now, how amazed I was at the walking tracks winding through farmyards and randomly across fields with conveniently placed styles to climb over fences.

  8. Thank you for the stroll. I would love walking the railway trail with all those trees towering above me. Coming out to the grassy field was a surprise and and definitely autumn. I could picture where I was with your details.

    And to arrive home with a garden that is clearly a respite….life is pretty darn good. Donna

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