BrownhillsBob's #365daysofbiking

On a bike, riding somewhere. Every day, rain or shine.

Posts tagged ‘ripening’

#365daysofbiking The secret of pie


July 31st – A drier day, at least. After the deluge of the previous day, it was good to feel the landscape slowly drying in the morning sun.

The lousy summer has at least been good for the fruits: All along the waysides from Brownhills to Darlaston, fruit ids swelling and ripening, from apples to blackberries.

Autumn will soon be upon us – how quickly this season and year have passed.

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August 1st – I’ve been enjoying watching the progress of the berries and fruits this year, perhaps more than usual. Mainly I think because with the hot, dry weather I expected the harvest to be very poor, yet it’s far from meagre. Most things seem abundant, and it looks like being a good winter for birds with a bumper crop of haws reddening gradually in the hawthorn thickets and hedges.

These tough, hard berries are a good winter food for many birds, loaded with energy but bitter so they aren’t depleted quickly.

Grandad used to say and abundance of berries meant nature was preparing for a harsh winter.

It’ll be interesting to see if he was right.

July 24th – It seems early for blackberries to be ripening in such quantities right now, but they are. I think in reality we’re maybe only a week or two ahead of schedule, but it just seems wrong.

The foragers and animals won’t mind though – this juicy, black-red sugar laden fruit will sustain many a bird or rodent and make for many a decent pudding the the coming month or so.

Again, it seems like a good crop too.

July 16th – In Telford, I noticed that following the dry summer, the rowan berries were ripening well, but not large; they look dry, rough and on the verge of shrivelling.

It’ll be interesting to see if other fruits are similarly affected.

It’s a long time since we had a dry summer like this.

July 6th – Well, all week now I’ve been talking about the onset of the fruiting season, and here it is: The first blackberries are beginning to ripen near Clayhanger.

Not sure how good they’ll be though with the chronic lack of rainfall this summer: no chance to swell those lovely purple-black berries.

It’ll be interesting to see if the end crop is as early as it feels, and if the fruit are any good…

July 5th – Always bittersweet to see the berries come; a sign that spring is well and truly gone and summer is peaking.

Still, the Belisha orange berries of the rowan or mountain ash are beautiful in their own right and will bring colour aplenty to hedgerows, parks, verges and thickets for weeks to come, as well as being foraged for jams and jellies.

You can’t escape the passage of summer, so best enjoy it.

July 3rd – Summer ticks on and as I noted a few days ago, we’ve moved from flowing to fruiting. 

Lots of berries are now developing on the branches, from haws to rowan berries and even plenty of ripening cherries.

These will bring with them reds, oranges and purples and a whole range of new colour as they and the season mature.

A wonderful time of year.

July 17th – I had to pop down to Shenstone on my way home; on my return through the backlands I noticed something that had largely been passing me by of late; the crops in the fields are now ripening, and the harvest cannot be far away.

At Footherly, a field of nice, plump wheat is turning golden in the July warmth. The clean, milky-tasting grain will, if the weather continues to be reasonable, make great flour.

Nice to see.

July 6th – On the way to work on a grey, dull Monday morning, these apples near the cycleway in Goscote caught my eye, and made me think. They’re growing well, and ripening in the recent warm weather.

That’s a harbinger of late summer.

Just where is this year going?

July 23rd – in the Goscote Valley on my way to work, as the day started to warm up, I was drawn to a continual crackling sound. This always fascinates me; it’s the sound of gorse pods popping open with a snap, and scattering their seeds.

The action is induced by the warmth of the sun, and makes for an interesting diversion on the way to work. I love how the pods rattle musically when you shake the bushes, too.

It’s the little things that make summer, really.