August

August has the best days: long and sunny, with warm balmy evenings to enjoy with friends.

Deep summer is when laziness finds respectability.

Sam Keen
Blue skies and clouds over distant hills on a summers day.
Blue skies and clouds over distant hills on a summers day.

August, the month of holidays and Harvest. August feels like the countryside is taking a break too, preparing itself for the winds of autumn and the rigors of Winter. By now the young birds have fledged, and even the second brood of young blackbirds have an element of independence. Meadows shimmer in the heat, rivers flow lazily along and the trees wave lazily in the gentle summer breeze. We can have the notion that autumn is the season for harvest, possibly because of harvest festival and the associated feasts and carnivals – however, in farming terms, Autumn is year-end. High summer is harvest, the whole reason for summer holidays, to release the children from school to help with the harvest.

Dates, events, holidays and festivals.

August 2022

Public holidays

29th August – Summer Bank Holiday

Seasonal, astronomical and nautical events

5th August – 1st Quarter

7th August – Neap Tide

12th August – Full Moon, Sturgeon Moon

14th August – Spring Tide

19th August – 3rd Quarter

21st August – Neap Tide

27th August – New Moon

29th August – Spring Tide

Festivals and events, religious, traditional and sporting

30th July – 6th August – Cowes Week

1st August – NSA Wales and Border Early Ram Sale

2nd August – Egton Bridge Gooseberry Show 

3rd August – Thornton le Dale Show

3rd – 7th August – RHS Garden Hyde Hall Flower Show

4th – 7th August – Valley Fest

5th – 14th August – Falmouth Week

6th August – Osmotherley Show

6th August – East Kirkby Air Show

6th August – World Championship Hen Racing

10th August – Danby Show

10th August – Ashover Show Agricultural and Horticultural

11th – 14th August – Bristol International Balloon Fiesta

12th – 14th August – RetroFestival, Newbury

13th August – Summer Cider Cycle

13th August – Manifold Show

13th – 14th August – Blackpool Airshow 2022

13th – 14th August – Combined OPS, Headcorn Aerodrome

13th – 15th August – Whitby Regatta 2022

13th – 19th August – Cromer Carnival

18th – 21st August – Green Man Festival

18th – 21st August – Camp Bestival, Shropshire

18th – 21st August – Airbourne International Air Show 2022,

19th – 21st August – RHS Garden Rosemoor Flower Show

19th – 21st August – Welsh Kennel Club Dog Show

20th August – Race the Train

20th August – Proms Spectacular, Rowlands Castle

20th & 21st August – The Garlic Festival

21st August – Ashbourne Show

24th August – Egton Show

25th – 26th August – Clacton Air Show 2022

26th & 27th August – Frocester Beer Festival

27th August – Rude Health Bog Triathlon

27th August – Henstridge Wings & Wheels

27th August – Proms Spectacular, Malvern

27th & 28th August – Rhyl Air Show 2022

27th – 29th August – Military Odyssey, Kent Show Ground

28th August – World Bog Snorkelling Championships

28th August – The Shetland Pony Stud Book Society Breed Show

28th August – Little Gransden Air & Car Show – Little Gransden

TBA – PieFest

TBA – Wiltshire Game and Country Fair

TBA – Square Fair

TBA – Buxton International Festival

TBA – World Gravy Wrestling Championships

TBA – Hinderwell Show

TBA – Rosedale Show

TBA – Bilsdale Show

TBA – Farndale Show

Also see the Red Arrows UK display schedule 2022

Find more events and notable dates throughout the year


August seasonal Foods

What foods are seasonal in August.

Greens and leaves: Basil, Broccoli, Chervil, Cavolo nero, Cabbage, Lamb’s lettuce, Lettuce, Mint, Pak choi, Radicchio, Samphire, Sorrel, Spinach, Swiss chard, Watercress.

Roots and other veg:  Aubergine, Beetroot, Broad bean, Carrot, Celery, Courgette, Courgette flower, Fennel bulb, Garlic, Globe artichoke, Kohlrabi, Onion, Spring onion, Mangetout, Marrow, Pepper, Potato, Peas, Radish, Runner bean, Tomato.

Meat: Beef, Chicken, Grouse, Guinea fowl, Lamb, Pork.

Fruits: crab apple, Blackberry, Gooseberry, Loganberry, Raspberry, Redcurrant, Strawberry, Tayberry.

Seafood: Crab, Halibut, Salmon, Kipper, Mackerel, Tuna.

Exotics: Banana, Fig, Peach, Pomegranate, Nectarine, Watermelon.

Find out more about seasonal foods throughout the year with a guide to Seasonal foods.


In nature

August is the month of long, lazy, hazy days. Golden fields and swooping birds.

Harvest in full swing across the countryside, allotments, and gardens. Time for camping, the beach, sitting back with a long cool drink and enjoying the heat.

Even though it is the height of summer the nights are starting to draw in – as yet not unpleasantly so. Evenings can be spent walking in parks or the countryside, seeing friends, enjoying a pint in a beer garden, or eating alfresco. Watching the swallows and swifts swoop overhead, the resident birds having taken leave from their territories. Take time to enjoy the balmy twilight as bats and owls awake to patrol their beat.

The mornings too are changing. If there is a heatwave, they may provide the only pleasant respite as dawn creeps ever later. There may be dew on the plants and the feeling that autumn is lying in wait.

A bounty of fruits around, with trees and bushes laden with fruits and berries.


On the Farm in August

Harvest. The harvest is now in full swing, and on good dry days can almost be a 24-hour operation. As the crop ripens farmers will be looking for optimum moisture content in the grain. Too damp and it will need to be machine dried, a very expensive procedure, too dry, and money is lost as the yield weight will be lighter. All the talk is about the yield.

There may still be the taking of silage, and in some places hay. This year’s young cattle and sheep gaining size fast. Animals rotate around fields following regrowth after cropping or place onto downlands following shearing.

Some fields are already being ploughed and sown with this year’s winter crops of Barley, Wheat and oilseed. Some may have been undersown with other crops such as grass or green manure crops to help bind the soil after harvest and improve fertility naturally. The ground may be harrowed to open it up to allow rain to soak in rather than run off – invaluable with the threat of thunderstorms.

The colours changing from the greens of early summer to a golden glow.

Find out more about what is happening in the Year on the farm


A field of sunflowers
Field of Sunflowers in August

Things to do in August

In the August garden

What to plant and sow

Gardening hints

Ipsum text

Out and about

Also see the Out and about Blogs

Sultry Days, Balmy evenings – and thunderstorms.

Out on a river on a sunny summers day
Out on a river on a sunny summers day

Recipe of the month.

Mackerel  (Two ways)

Mackerel is a joy of summer. If you can get it fresh, all the better, if not, try good quality smoked mackerel.

If you are at the coast, getting fresh mackerel is probably a must, even if you are scared of cooking fresh fish that may be giving you the beady eye.

1 – Smoked Mackerel and Tomatoes

Possibly the tastiest, simplest, succulent, summer supper. Both main ingredients very much in season. If you can get homegrown tomatoes, either grown yourself, from a friend, or from the farm gate, all the better.

This is a rustic dish, so just enjoy and don’t fret about the prep. Ideal for a late evening supper watching the sunset.

Ingredients

  • A packet of smoked Mackerel
  • Some homegrown seasonal tomatoes
  • Vinegar: traditional malt, or balsamic
  • Basil (Optional)
  • Some pepper, fresh ground black, ideally

Equipment.

  • Tweezers
  • Scissors

Preparation

1 – Wash and slice the tomatoes, medium thickness. layer on a plate. Sprinkle vinegar: malt for traditional English, balsamic for a Mediterranean twist (add basil if desired). Grind fresh black pepper over.

2 – Use scissors to get into the smoked Mackerel packet. It is worth Pin boning the mackerel for a more pleasant dish (see below). Hold fillet skin side down, bend gently pushing the middle of the fillet towards you. The fillet should break and the skin remains intact. Peel the two halves of fillet from the centre outwards to remove the skin. Break the fillet into fork sized pieces. Spread over the tomatoes.

Cooking

That’s it! Enjoy. If you want something more substantial, serve with good quality wholemeal bread and butter, or maybe some buttered potatoes.

2 – Grilled Mackerel and Tomato Ceviche

Fresh mackerel is the best. Try Mackerel line fishing from a beach, pre-make the ceviche and cook the mackerel on a bucket BBQ. You can, of course, buy the fish from a fishmonger or at the harbour. All fishmongers (and many fishermen) will gut the fish for you.

Filleting mackerel isn’t as daunting as it seems – watch this video on How to Debone a Mackerel

Ingredients

  • Fresh mackerel fillets
  • olive oil
  • Fresh homegrown tomatoes
  • 1 red chilli, deseeded and finely sliced
  • 1 small or 1/2 medium red onion
  • Basil leaves
  • 1 lemon
  • salt
  • freshly ground black pepper

Equipment.

  • Tweezers (surgical forceps are even better)
  • Mandolin (Optional)
  • BBQ or griddle pan.

Preparation

  • Pinbone the Mackerel
  • Roughly chop the tomatoes
  • Finely slice the onion (using the Mandolin or knife skills)
  • Finely slice the chilli

Cooking

1 – Put the tomatoes, sliced chilli and onion in a bowl and stir to combine. Grate over the zest of the lemon and squeeze in the juice, mixing until evenly incorporated.

2 – Season with salt and pepper. Stir in enough olive oil to ensure that the ingredients are lightly coated, but not flooded with oil. Stir lightly to preserve as much of the tomato texture as possible.

3 – Oil the Mackerel slightly to prevent sticking. It is an oily fish, but sometimes a little extra oil is needed. On a Preheated BBQ or Griddle (or frying pan if no griddle available) place the fillets skin side down for 2 – 4 minutes, take care not to overcook. Ideal the skin will become lovely and crisp. Flip and cook for 30 seconds.

4 – Place the ceviche on plates, place mackerel on top and enjoy.

For more inspiration see the Food Blogs

August Jobs in the vegetable garden or allotment

General Jobs

Weeding and Water.

Feed tomatoes and peppers. Pinch out tips of tomatoes.

Dry out and ripen Onions, Shallots and garlic.

Continue to earth up potatoes, celery and brassicas.

Tie in blackberries.

Sowing and Planting

Outdoors: Sow – Cabbages (spring), Calabrese, Carrots, Chicory, Kohl rabi, Lettuces, Oriental leaves, Radishes (winter), Rocket, Swiss chard, Turnips.

Plant: Cauliflower, Kale, Sprouting broccoli, Strawberries.

Harvest

Aubergines, Apricots, Beetroot, Blackberries, Blackcurrants, Blueberries, Broad beans, Broccoli, Carrots, Celery, Cherries, Chicory, Chillies and peppers, Courgettes, Cucumbers, Fennel, French beans, Garlic, Globe artichokes, Gooseberries, Kohl rabi, Lettuces, Marrows, Melons, Nectarines, Onions Peas, Peaches, Peaches, Peppers and Chillis, Potatoes, Radishes, Raspberries, Redcurrants, Rhubarb, Rocket, Runner beans, Shallots, Spring onions, Spinach, Strawberries, Squash, Sweetcorn, Tomatoes, Turnips, Whitecurrants.

Find out more about what is happening in the allotment or vegetable garden

Golden field ready for harvest in August
Golden field ready for harvest in August

Activities, things to see and do in August

With lengthening days arise more opportunities to get out and about. To see what is happening in nature and the countryside. There is also a lot more to see as they year really starts to get going.

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August in pictures

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