Flower power

Today’s picture is a windmill in Wales from my brother Andrew’s April album

the mill

In an unsettling moment, we woke up and it wasn’t raining.  However, I pulled myself together and went off cycling with Drop.  My joints had objecting to raising my mileage to 16 per day so I reverted to a gentle ten miles up to Callister and back.  Drop whizzed off up the hill and and I enjoyed the downhill and downwind return to Langholm.  In fact, I enjoyed it so much that I added a two mile extension up to the High Mill Bridge and back which I managed fairly easily.

Drop returned safely and we enjoyed a cup of coffee with some more of his Demerara sugar flavoured scones.   After coffee, I cycled up to town on the slow bike to pick up my prescriptions, buy some fat balls and take some pictures of Langholm to give to Fiona at the Langholm Initiative who in turn was to hand them on to someone who was giving a talk and needed a photo of Langholm.  I haven’t put them in here today but might use them as pictures of the day soon.

There was no excitement at the bird feeder today so I looked at flowers instead.

Gorgeous roses enjoying the sunshine
Gorgeous roses enjoying the sunshine
The bees are still flocking to the Weigela. They seem to be small white bottomed bees.

We are at the stage that when old plants go, new plants take their place.

iris and ligularia
A rather sodden iris on the way out and a perky ligularia on the way in.

The fine weather gave me an opportunity to get the mower out and address the grass on the middle lawn.  I have been so pleased with the effect of the top dressing that I am planning to top dress the front lawn too. I also finished clipping the section of hedge which I started three days ago before the rain.

After lunch, the sun really began to shine and rather than waste it, I decided to walk round Gaskell’s Walk and admire the foxgloves.  I went through the park…

War memorial
The war memorial beds in the Buccleuch Park were looking very well kept.

…and then up to the Stubholm…


…where a rabbit joined me for a moment or two.

Everything was very green until I got to the point where the path descends through what was an old wood until it was cleared.   Then the colour changed.

Foxgloves above me…
Foxgloves below me…
Foxgloves ahead of me.

There were quite a few foxgloves about.

I came to the end of the path and left the foxgloves behind as I went to look at the Auld Stane Bridge, one of my favourite bridges.

Auld Stane Bridge

I had meant to head for home straight down the road at this point but the day was so fine and the surroundings so glorious that I walked up past Hallcrofts instead.  I passed a fine dry stone dyke which I pictured under construction when I last walked along this road.

Dry stone dyke
A fine and painstaking piece of work.

There were elegant horses to be seen  (with the usual power lines of course.)

horse at hallcrofts

In fact, during the walk there were many horses of all shapes and sizes and colours to be seen.

mixed horses

On the other side of the valley, a shepherd was rounding up the sheep in the modern style.

Sheep rounding up


Because he didn’t need a dog, he was shouting vigorously to encourage the sheep to move along but then as they say, “Why keep a dog when you can bark yourself?”

I passed Hallcrofts and turned into the woods and dropped down to cross the Becks Burn on the wooden bridge deep in the shade.

Becks Bridge
It has done well to survive many a flood.

Coming out of the wood, I was able to look across the valley to see the foxgloves that I had walked through.


I stopped at Scott’s Knowe to take a picture of Wauchope Cottage just to show those who haven’t seen it how the garden is squeezed into some busy streets.  It lies between the walnut tree and the house.

Wauchope cottage

When I got home, I found that Mrs Toot had been very busy in the garden and we both sat down for a cup of tea and a rest.  Then, invigorated by the walk, I cut the front lawn….

A glimpse of the concentration needed for transcendental lawn mowing (TLM®).  The mower is a Webb Witch.

I followed that by trimming the hedge along the road which had become regrettably shaggy in a very short time.

The thing about lawn care is that in our rather chilly and wet climate, I spend a lot of time spiking and sanding, weeding and feeding, scarifying and raking all to get it looking nice for maybe one day a year.  I think that this was probably that day.

Front lawn
Front lawn

Middle lawn

Now it’s all downhill.

In the evening, I went with Sandy and Jean to the Archive Centre where Jean and I put another week of the index into the database while Sandy scanned in yet more photographs.  Then, after a pint at the Douglas, we went to visit Jean’s new flat which impressed us a lot, not least because it has a magnificent view of rivers and hills from its front window.    I wished that I had my little camera with me but I will have to wait for another visit.

I did look at the birds long enough today to get a flying sparrow for chaffinch of the day.

flying sparrow

This was a top class day from start to finish.









Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

15 thoughts on “Flower power

  1. You are so funny about your lawn. On the other hand it is a credit to you! If you saw our lawn you would have a nervous breakdown – haha!

  2. Foxglove, bridge & stonework: excellent all round. The perspective shot shows your garden to be a verdant oasis in surrounding streets. Transcendental does not describe my frame of mind while doing lawn maintenance. That must be why your lawn is so much nicer.

    1. All the houses round us have gardens too and everyone takes great pride in their patch. We were lucky to find a old house with a bit of its original land left to it rather than a bungalow built on the smallest plot that the builder could get away with.

  3. The garden is in top form and makes me look at my “yard” in shame. Well done and if yesterday truly was the one day a year you will enjoy it, you at least appreciate that fact and made the most of it, which is more than most of us ever do.

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