Folklore Thursday: Weather Lore

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Recently, Twitter has been full of British people complaining about the weather.

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While this is a national habit, it’s fair to say that autumn has come early (though I’m holding out hopes for an Indian summer…)

The blackberries are ripening.


The haws are ripening.


The elderberries are ripening.

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The apples, plums and pears are falling from the trees.


One of the joys of writing about my nature adventures is that I can track seasonal shifts.

Jam season was about a month later last year. Elderberries were three weeks later.

Folk wisdom says:

“If a cold August follows a hot July,
It foretells a Winter hard and dry.”

And phenology deems autumn’s arrival by key nature signals.

“Autumn may be deemed to have arrived at the first tinting of oak or beech trees, the appearance of ripe sloes or elderberries and the arrival of winter migrant birds such as redwings and fieldfares.”

Another old rhyme says,

“When it rains in August,
It raises honey and wine.’

This is clearly a silver lining. Get foraging while you can. You may need elderberry port to keep the winter chill at bay…

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