September is languidly sliding along with its customary mix of grandeur and dishevelment.
While I am tempted to mourn the warmth and vivacity of summer, this new season brings its own pleasures. As we move into autumn and beyond, I am determined not to clutch at the fading seasons, or stare fixedly too far ahead, but celebrate the best of now. So I pull on an extra layer of clothing, take a deep breath of the cool crisp air, and revel in September’s glories.
Sunrise is discernibly later each morning now, casting a mellow light across the garden, shuttered with dramatic silhouettes and shadows.
For a short time the greenhouse continues to house the last ripening tomatoes, chillis and aubergines; the cucumbers have almost all succumbed now to red spider mite, the dessicated skeletons of their vines waiting to be untangled. In the early morning light, condensation glitters and turns the panes opaque.
The cows have been moved into sheds during the recent rainfall; leaving a couple of horses the sole occupants of this pasture.
The seedheads of giant scabious (Cephalaria gigantea) and teasel (Dipsacus fullonum) stand proudly, while at their feet the sedums are in full bloom. Stipa tenuissima is indescribably beautiful with the low early sun illuminating its plumage.
Nearby, a lone spire from another clump of Agastache glows in the dawn light.
Webs seem to stretch across every space in the garden; single threads speculatively spun across open spaces often catch my face before I see them, while an army of spiders are setting up camp indoors.
The cats make the most of dry days to explore the unravelling undergrowth, skittering when the wind blows, before collapsing in a sheltered spot to bask in the late sun.
The first sharp tangs of wood smoke drift across the hill as the evenings draw in, soon we too shall give in and light our first fire of autumn, to melt the growing chill in the air.