A bumper year for sloe-gin addicts, and a good time now for checking out the fruits of waysides and hedgerows. As well as the Blackthorn, there are plenty of Dog-rose hips and Whitethorn (May) haws, and of course Blackberries. There are Dewberries along the path above tha railway cutting east of Chalky Road, and the best site for Spindles is the fine border hedge wuth Hildersham at the far side of the Linton Road arable field. There's one good Spindle Tree too by the river near the gap between the cricket and football fields. The black berries of wild Privet are here and there, and the berries of Wayfaring Tree (for example, along the Coach Road off Bourn Bridge Road, and by the public path between Abington Park and Hildersham Wood) are now turning from red to black. Black too are the berries of Purging Blackthorn, its strongly veined leaves now beginning to curl. If tearing a leaf in half reveals thin fibres between the two halves it is Dogwood, which also generally has reddish twigs. Do please let me know if you find this, and I haven't a record of a site in our villages.
Among the dry seeds, it's easy to spot the single samaras (flying seeds) of Ash and the double ones of Sycamore and its native cousin Field Maple (especially in the football field near the river). There too there is a mass of scrambling Hop, whose attractive seed-heads are usually ready for Harvest Festival.
I'm still hoping for an October stubble walk, but we shall have to see what turns up when we've had a bit more rain. Whether the fine show of late poppies in the Bourn Bridge fields is a good omen or not I don't know.