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Though the temperature in October was on average 3 degrees below that of last year, there were no ground frosts. Last year there were several. However we live on a hill and those days where the overnight air temperature was below 2 degrees (3 times) would have seen frost in the valleys. Nevertheless we had last year a minus figure once. This year none were below 2.
Our first wood fire was lit on October 6th - it seems to get earlier each year!
Although rainfall was above last year, the ground still seems dryish. The mushrooms and toadstool appearances were very poor. A friend nevertheless showed me a good stand of Caesar's Mushroom - Amanita cesarea. This is an excellent edible mushroom. It is closely related to the poisonous death cap and fly agaric, but recognisable by its yellow stems contrasting with its alarming orange-red cap. It was growing with heaths on acid soil under pubescent oaks.
Cranes flew south on October 11th and November 2nd (next report). It was odd that these flights were so far apart!