I love this time of year - first frosts, migrating birds, autumn colours and lots of wild harvesting - the soft materials are nearly over but I've been out getting the last of this years Iris & Rush crop and looking forward to leaf drop and the start of twig & stick season.
Purple Moor Grass (Molinia caerulea) the UK's only native deciduous grass -correct me if i'm wrong, will soon be ready for collection - you can drag your fingers through the tussocks and it comes away easily in handfuls. In the meantime there is still Soft Rush to be had before it browns off too much at the tips.
Harvesting Soft Rush (Juncus effusus) for my next Isle of Wight Scran Bag.
The pithy insides of Soft Rush, in the days of old dipped in meat dripping and burnt as Rush Lights.
Harvesting Rush by bicycle, Highland Council Craftmaker in Residence Project, Kingussie, Speyside, 2005.
Gathering Purple Moor Grass (Molinia caerulea) late in the spring, Highland Council Craftmaker in Residence Project, Kingussie, Speyside, 2005. This species can be harvested late in the autumn once pale, right through - weather permitting to the following spring. However gather when you can - as a heavy rain storm can wash away all the loose leaves' as I found out returning to gather more a day or two later to find it all gone! My favourite string making grass.