Thank goodness for the Olympics

Today’s guest picture is another from our recent week as guests in the south.  Sally and Richard took us to the gardens of this fine mansion, Heale House, which was built in the latter part of the sixteenth century.

Heale house

My ideal plan for the day relied on an early leap out of bed into glorious sunshine and the subsequent late arrival of a weather front.

The wind was forecast to be fairly light so a cycle ride of a reasonable length was part of the scheme.

In the event, the early sunshine was there but it was not matched by the equivalent leap out of bed.  The leap transmogrified into a late stagger and after a lengthy breakfast, I finally got on my bike at ten o’clock.  It was still sunny when I set out but it soon clouded over and I shortened my intended route to thirty four miles and just made it home before the untimely arrival of the weather front started the rain off.

I didn’t have time to stop and stare but I paused for a banana at Gretna Green and admired a pair of fine horses while I munched.

Gretna Green horses

They were the front end of a smart wedding conveyance….

gretna Green carriage

…waiting for another bride and groom to roll off the Gretna Green marriage conveyor belt.

Nearby stands a strange work of art.

gretna green

It acts as a photo frame for pictures of happy couples but it always looks to me like the hands of someone who has been buried prematurely and is begging to be released, perhaps not the most happy metaphor for a marriage.

There was just time for a quick scoot round the garden in some light drizzle when I got back before the rain set in for the rest of the day.

The gloomy weather had put the hoverflies off and the picturesque poppy only had a single small fly for company today.

poppy with fly

Some bright red leaves on the Virginia Creeper seemed appropriate for such a gloomy and autumnal day.

virginia creeper

But autumn brings fruit as well so all is not lost.

A good reward for work with the pollinating paintbrush in our chilly spring

There are still plenty of flowers about…

the cutting bed

Kitchen chimney pot

…and new flowers are coming along.  There are anemones and astilbes among the dahlias now.

anemone, astilbe and dahlia

I thought that I had found a very odd dahlia….


…until Mrs Tootlepedal pointed out that I was looking at it from the back.

Not everything in the garden is lovely.  For some reason the Golden Syllabub rose, which has had plenty of buds, has never felt that it was the right time to open out and has looked like this all summer.

golden syllabub

It wasn’t very warm and the clouds had made the day dark and cheerless so it was most fortunate that the authorities had arranged a very interesting programme of Olympic events for us to watch.  We watched everything.

No flying birds today but there is a flower of the day.  It is a dahlia (viewed from the front).






Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

26 thoughts on “Thank goodness for the Olympics

  1. I cant say I’m watching all the Olympic coverage, but I am seeing about ten times more than I ever have before. I’m finding it riveting.

  2. I think that’s the first glimpse we’ve seen of your sunflowers. They’re amazing plants.
    It seems odd that the Golden Syllabub rose never grows beyond the bud stage. I’ve never heard of a rose doing that.
    I’m glad the hand pollinating paid off but not happy that you had to do it.

  3. I agree with you about the work of art, it does look like some one begging to be released.

    I really liked the photos of the flowers, both wide and tight, front and back. I’ve been told that shooting flowers from the back is the artistic way of doing it, with some flowers it seems to be. Still, I love your flower photos, so pay no attention to the experts. 😉

  4. Glad you got a pedal in before the weather packed in. Those apples look wonderful and I had to giggle at the about-face dahlia. I’m always amazed at how mesmerised I get by the Olympics.

  5. Those hands are odd…

    About all I have seen if the Olympics is the rugby. It isn’t a popular sport in the US so it is hard for me to find it on tv usually.

  6. The Golden Syllabub doesn’t look at all happy but the rest of your flowers look wonderful. I wonder why so many people still want to go to Gretna to get married, though I presume the wedding people whose business it is to marry them would have something to say if the fashion changed.

    1. It is a big business in the town. I suppose that there is a romantic ring to a Gretna wedding but I would imagine that quite a few couples are disappointed when they get there.

  7. The garden is glorious. I love the picture of the sculpture with the clasped hands and agree that it looks like someone begging to be released. Thanks for reminding me that I can’t remember the last time I leaped out of bed.

  8. I chuckled at your impressions of the work of art. 🙂

    The Golden Syllabub is behaving like some of our roses did earlier this summer. Things look better now that it is drier, and black spot fungus is losing its grip.

    The apples look great! I am impressed with the paintbrush pollination results.

  9. Lovely photos of your ever colourful garden and the delicious looking ripening apples. Pleased to see some bright flower arrangements behind the handsome horses so that discerning couples may have a more attractive setting for their wedding photos!

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