TODAY a walk round GWT's Lower Woods, to catch up on autumn colours and to get some fresh air was the plan, and so wrapped up and prepared to brace the mud we trooped off. As it happens the mud did not materialise and the streams in the woodland were barely flowing, I expect due to the recent dry weather.
Considering how dog friendly and beautiful this woodland is, there really were not many people there and although busier then ever (10 cars!) you rarely bump into anyone whilst walking around. Maybe they're all paying £9 each to get into Westonbirt*! (*please note that Westonbirt is brilliant and does lovely refreshments).
At this time of year there's no amazing and distracting wildflowers carpeting the woodland floor, so your attention is drawn elsewhere; of course currently that's the wonderful yellows, browns and oranges of the leaves, but also the trees themselves. This is when the fallen leaves alert you to the species above: oak, ash and hazel dominate - but the bright yellow field maple leaves give away the species amongst its fellows - and then the leaves of the wild service tree lead your eye from your feet to a spindly bare branched (and slightly ugly) tree above. I also found holly, alder, wych elm and hornbeam (the later for the first time).
There were not many large fungi evident, but this unusual specimen caught my eye; I think that its a grey coral fungus.