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Making the most of your woods

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Jeremy Torrance web producer Jeremy Torrance web producer | 16:07 UK time, Thursday, 28 October 2010

It's mid-autumn and with many families on half term breaks, there is no shortage of places to go and things to do.

Here are just a few ideas.

Find places to go near you
Our two biggest woodland organisations may well have woodlands closer than you think.:

- Forestry Commission
Woodland Trust 

Over in Northern Ireland the Forest Service also has a useful list of forests it manages.

There are also plenty of woodlands to explore in our wildlife reserves. You can find where the Wildlife Trusts’ 2,256 nature reserves are on their map.

BBC Breathing Places has a wealth of activities from over 1000 organisations around the UK.

On a local level, there are literally hundreds of local community woodlands projects, which you can get involved in.

Sheffield Park, National Trust c.There and back again

Sheffield Park, National Trust c.There and back again Autumnwatch Flickr Group

But before you go...
Our broadleaf forests are an adventure but do you know your sycamore samaras from your ash achenes, your chestnuts from your conkers?

And what's happening under your feet in the rotting leaves? Fear not, there's beauty in decay and at least 10 Fascinating Fungi Facts you didn't know about the enchanting world of mushrooms.

And there's still plenty of time to tick off a few more from our 20 Things to do in Autumn challenge.

While you are out there keep your ears open for some autumnal sounds and if you are feeling peckish, try a bit of foraging.

For the kids
And indeed the adults too, Breathing Places has a host of downloadable games you can play while out and about. 

The Woodland Trust also have hundreds of activity guides.


  • Comment number 1.

    Hi Guys,
    Why do some leaves change there colour to yellow whereas some go orange or red etc.

  • Comment number 2.

    I was watching a Jay in my garden, close to Epping Forest, (a rarity in itself.) A very shy bird.
    I noticed the Jay pecking in the earth in the lawn, when it had finished it placed a leaf over the site and moved on to another part of the lawn and repeated the process. It then flew off.
    Can you explain this fascinating behaviour? I have never seen anything so meticulous.

  • Comment number 3.

    hello just to share that the nuts of beech trees are edible. i have eaten and know of a few people who peel the outer layer and eat the nut inside. worth a try.
    We enjoy the show. thank you

  • Comment number 4.

    This poem was written by my grandmother and I thought it was very apt for the show tonight and the topic of trees losing their leaves.

    'Autumn leaves' by Jane Curry

    I love the leaves when they are brown and hanging on the trees,
    I love them when they tumble down and fly before the breeze
    I love them when in golden heap they lie in quiet lane
    They whisper, whisper 'ere they sleep
    Spring will come again.

  • Comment number 5.

    There are a number of mature trees, mainly sycamore, surrounding my garden. Why do the leaves on the branches facing inward towards the garden turn a lovely golden colour but the leaves on the same trees, facing outwards, go grey/brown? I think it may be because the wind dries them out more on the outside but if the autumn display shows the natural colour, minus chlorophyll, how can this happen?


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