Welcome to autumn:

Simon, John and Margaret join forces this autumn/winter with the wonderful team at Haith’s wild bird food (https://www.haiths.com/) to launch their new project – “Make Nature Your Playground”. Gemma Saunders (Customer Care Manager) introduces herself and explains more about the project and how Haith’s aim to encourage parents and grandparents to get out and about and surround themselves and their children/grandchildren with nature’s playground. “We want to provide listeners with the information on what to look out for during the autumn/winter months and share activities in which families can get involved,” explains Gemma – who makes a wonderful addition to The Armchair Naturalists Podcast.

John and Margaret Cooper share their ideas and knowledge with listeners and whet our appetite to observe nature’s natural flush of “leaves changing colour, berries and fruits, mosses, ferns, fungi, winter birds congregating, tracks and signs of mammals, end-of-summer insects e.g. crane flies, wasps…”

Podcast edited by Edward King. Thank you!

Show notes:

Find out more about the great work Haith’s do at https://www.haiths.com/

Ode To Autumn – John Keats

Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eaves run;
To bend with apples the moss’d cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For Summer has o’er-brimm’d their clammy cells.

Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,
Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;
Or on a half-reap’d furrow sound asleep,
Drows’d with the fume of poppies, while thy hook
Spares the next swath and all its twinéd flowers:
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep
Steady thy laden head across a brook;
Or by a cyder-press, with patient look,
Thou watchest the last oozings hours by hours.

Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they?
Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,—
While barréd clouds bloom the soft-dying day,
And touch the stubble-plains with rosy hue;
Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn
Among the river sallows, borne aloft
Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies;
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn;
Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft
The red-breast whistles from a garden-croft;
And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.