Recipes from my Suffolk Kitchen

Tuesday, 1 August 2017

August Days

I started to paint the August picture in the Country Diary of an Edwardian Lady colouring book but didn't have the right shades - there's only one purple in my set of 24 water colour crayons - to do the thistle, and no green crayons the right shade for the leaves. 

So here's Edith Holden's water colour painting instead.

 My photo of a thistle instead of my colouring
This is what August looks like here in among the arable fields of Suffolk, a field of wheat stretching
into the distance.

The first of August is celebrated in some parts of the Northern hemisphere as Lammas or Loaf Mass. This is when the first loaf of bread made from the first wheat harvested is blessed in a church service.
It would have been a public holiday when fairs were held and also marked the start of the time commoners were allowed to graze their animals on the stubble fields.

 Looks as if it the wheat in the field by us is ready to harvest, but after the rain we've had it's too wet for combines to get on the field for a few days at least.


No wonder one country saying in my books says
 "Dry August and warm doth harvest no harm".

Most other weather sayings are linked to St. Bartholomew's  day which is the 24th and is 40 days after St Swithin's hence the saying 
"All the tears that St. Swithin can cry
St Bartlemy's mantle wipes them dry" 
and
"If the 24th August be fair and clear
Then hope for a prosperous Autumn that year"

Before the Romans, in Anglo-Saxon times, August was called Weodmonath - The month of weeds!
We have a few of those!

In some parts of the country St Bartholomew is the Patron Saint of Beekeepers because the 24th was the traditional day to begin the honey harvest.


Back Soon
Sue
And a PS. Yes it's knapweed growing everywhere, thank you everyone. The house with no one in is owned by someone with houses in either London and Sudbury, or France and Sudbury or maybe all three. Apparently they've advertised it for sale once or twice but then taken it off the market again. Now and again someone appears and paints or mends something and the grass is cut by someone else. And that's all we know!



21 comments:

  1. August looks beautiful in your part of the world. I do hope the weather dries the fields out sufficient enough to harvest soon. X

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    1. I expect the farmers are starting to get worried as the forecast isn't settled for another week at least

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  2. A ripening wheat field gladdens my heart! I think the Anglo Saxons had it right!

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    1. Weeds have been going crazy with the rain we've had

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  3. I don't know why but I love thistles. There must be a bit of Scottish in me somewhere.
    The photo of the wheat field is gorgeous-x-

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    1. Not good in the garden though especially hand weeding!

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  4. A lovely post. I still LOVE the paintings and quotes in the Edwardian Lady book, have done several x-stitch pictures derived from them, and have EL bedding etc (STILL!)

    Good to see cornfields, as we are very arable round here - in fact, our valley counts as Hill Farming so they get a subsidy.

    Couldn't see them close enough, but I think your little lilacy flowers from yesterday are Scabious, rather than Knapweed. The Knapweed has a sort of circle of green around the flower and the Scabious is flatter.

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    1. Def. Knapweed. Picture isn't good due to windy weather.
      The colouring book is lovely but I'm no good with the water colour pencis!

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  5. I noticed lots of farmers have harvested already thanks to the early hot dry weather. The blackberries are huge around here and as black as coal. Beautiful.

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    1. Blackberries are always poor now we have too much dry weather early on.

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  6. Sue, can you not mix your own colours from what you have ie. reds and blues?. When I do that I use an old ceramic tile to use as a palette.

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    1. I only have water colour pencils that dip in water to use. I haven't tried blending them like that

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  7. no, not me in Asda this a.m, but Violet & I were across the road, in B&M, The Range and Smyths. x

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    1. A good thing I didn't ask her if her name was Sadie ( she had shoes like yours above and very dark hair!)

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  8. After a very dry spring when the farmers were irrigating their fields as early as April, its been a bit wet. We have wheat fields like your neighbours and we have lush looking sugarbeet fields.

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    1. Not so much sugarbeet grown in east Suffolk as there once was when the Ipswich factory was still open... and when spring was spring and summer was summer!

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    2. Peter said to me the other day the sugar beet look like melons and the tops like trees.

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  9. We are in an area where it is mainly sheep on the Pennines there is not much arable farming around here so it is lovely for me to see your picture of the golden wheat field.

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  10. The wheat field reminds me of those here. However, this year due to lack of rain I fear the farmers will not have as good a harvest as usual.

    God bless.

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