Life on land - harvest
It is almost 12 months since we moved to the country. We've watched the impact of each season on the land around us. And now it is harvest. When we lived in the suburbs, harvest was something we almost had to take by faith. Food came from the supermarkets, clean and tidy, neatly wrapped in cellophane. Well, we still go to the supermarket as well as the village store. Apart from some lettuce, beans and courgettes we are not self-sufficient in food. The six apple yield from our trees will not take us through the winter! But at least our appreciation of the hard working farmers on whom we all depend has grown exponentially.
The major local crops appear to be grass, potatoes and barley. And I've discovered that barley fields can be very photogenic. The first picture is of a barley field just outside Ballycastle, that enjoys a wonderful view of Rathlin Island, Fair Head and, on a clear day, right across to Scotland. The sun had almost set, just catching the top of the headland. I used a tripod and a slow shutter speed to capture the movement of the breeze across the growing crop.
My weekly treks to the coast generally take me through the townland of Clintyfinnan. Just beyond the river Bush, on either side of the road lie some beautiful barley fields. I waited and watched until the massed spikes of barley began to turn golden. (The rogue tall shoots are wild oats.)
I waited and watched some more until finally harvest began. I had hoped for an action shot or two of a combine harvester but that will have to wait until next year. But I managed a shot when the field was only partially harvested, with the round bales among the standing crop.
Finally, returning from a dawn shoot at the coast I stopped on the east facing hill as the sun burst through the mist to take another image.
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