DOWN in Strathdevon, many of the wildflowers have finished blooming and are now displaying seed heads ready to scatter their grains of life that by next spring will sprout into a new generation of plants.

The crowns of cow parsley are heavy with dark seed capsules as is meadow crane’s-bill, which is so named because its green seed cluster does indeed look like a bird’s beak. The seed pods of broom are also developing fast, and once they turn dark and wither, they burst open in a mini-explosion, scattering their seeds far and wide.

Berries too are appearing in abundance. Wild raspberries are already in full fruit and brambles are not far behind, with their now green berries soon transforming into juicy ripeness. Rowans and elder bushes are also hanging heavy with fruit – this really is the season of plenty.

Such bountiful abundance comes at a perfect time for the hordes of young birds around Clackmannanshire at the moment. They are everywhere, with almost every bush seeming to hold a family of blue tits, willow warblers, or whitethroats.

Other animals too are making hay whilst the sun shines, and my local badger sett is a hive of activity as they forage each evening out into the nearby fields and woods. Badgers are true omnivores, eating anything that takes their fancy, and over the next few months berries will form an important part of their diet.

It is also a time of farewells and the last of the sandpipers have now left the banks of the River Devon and are winging their way southwards to their far-flung wintering grounds. Autumn is beckoning, but for now the warm balmy days of summer are still holding true and strong.