I talked to the trees


I have recently been sent a good selection of guest pictures and will work through them.  Today’s guest picture comes from Langholm exile, Irving and shows a visitor to his garden.


It was only a degree or two above freezing when we got up this morning and the wind was blowing more fiercely than yesterday so in spite of some cheerful sunshine, I was more than happy to stretch breakfast into coffee by way of a crossword and some bird watching.

As the birds that I watched today were exactly the same as the birds that I had watched yesterday, I thought that I might have a bird free blog today for a change.

After coffee, I took a walk round the garden with Mrs Tootlepedal.  She is very pleased with these hellebores this year…


…and you can see why.

To make up for the lack of pictures of birds, I went out for a walk, hoping to find interesting things to look at and choosing a route that was well protected by hedges and woods.  If you could get out of the wind and into the sunshine, it was a grand day for an expedition.

I went along the track to the Becks wood, passing fresh growth on the larches…


…new lambs in the fields…


…and a dove from above.

white pigeon
…or possibly a pigeon.

I kept an eye for scarlet elf caps in the wood and saw that there were still one or two about.


(I put an editing suggestion from last night’s meeting into action with this image.  I need a bit more work at it but it was fun to play about in the photo editor.)

I thought that the light might be right for a visit to the little waterfall on the Becks Burn…

Becks waterfall

..but I still didn’t manage to capture just what a delightful corner this spot is.  I’ll try again in summer.

When I had crossed the burn and got through the woods, I walked up the road for a bit.  I noted a well built stone culvert…


…which no doubt these days would be a concrete or metal pipe.  The labour involved in creating the roads round us must have been enormous as they are crossed by endless little streams….

…and I saw my first celandine of the spring…


…which was more welcome to me by the roadside than it will be to Mrs Tootlepedal if any appear in the garden.

The views were well decorated with clouds again…

Becks view

…but they were kinder today and I got round my walk without encountering any hail or rain.

I went to visit the old curling pond but it is sadly overgrown now.  The visit wasn’t wasted though as  a’dogs tooth’ peltigera lichen caught my eye as I was jumping over a ditch in the wood.


I walked back down the road….

Becks road

..with yet more views on the way…

View from hallcrofts

…until I stopped to take a picture of the bridge over the Becks Burn as it passes under the  Wauchope road .

Becks Burn

There is a good show of daffodils waiting to greet visitors to the town as they approach from the west…

Meikleholm daffodils

…but I liked this lone dandelion as well.


I put some vegetable soup on to cook when I got home and while it was simmering, I had another look round the garden.

In spite of the chilly weather, spring is definitely springing.

drumstick primula
A drumstick primula with a rich colour
A Euphorbia shows its claws
 Pulmonaria showing its colours

Mrs Tootlepedal came back from helping at the Buccleuch Centre and joined me in a bowl of soup (which is a phrase that conjures up an image that  bends the mind slightly).

I went out into the garden again and sieved a bucket or two of compost from the contents of Bin D and the results looked pretty good.  I am hoping to rebuild Bins A and B which are falling to bits so I will have to get Bin D empty as soon as possible.

On my walk, I had noticed that the farmer who owns the manure mine from which he kindly lets Mrs Tootlepedal get her supplies, had completely cleared the manure from the site.  There will be no  manure mining for Mrs Tootlepedal there thus year.

Bearing this in mind, we set off to a garden centre after I had finished my compost sieving and purchased a selection of compost, manure and soil improver in bags as well as paying a visit to a pet food supplier nearby where I topped up my stock of sunflower seeds for the birds.

It was still sunny when we got home but the wind was just as strong and it was getting pretty chilly so we went inside where Mrs Tootlepedal got on with some interior decorating and I played about with my photo editor.

The flying bird of the day is an eager chaffinch in the morning sunshine.

flying chaffinch

Endnote:  On my walk this morning, I passed the house of a cycling friend and he invited me into his garage to look at his indoor winter cycling set up which uses an app called Zwift.  With this app, he can get on his bike on a standard turbo trainer and cycle against other cyclists from all over the world in real time while his route unwinds in front of him, projected onto a screen from his laptop.  I might never come out into the open again if i had a set up like that.  No wind!


Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

29 thoughts on “I talked to the trees

  1. What a fine selection of lovely photos and all so bright and springlike. Another interesting lichen – new to me! Love the hellebores with their upstanding head- such great plants lasting for ages…my kind of flower. The Zwift sounds fun but you’d miss all those beautiful scenes and those different weather conditions that you enjoy!

  2. I have friends who have what looks like that very same hellebore and I’m waiting impatiently for it to bloom. It’s a beautiful flower.
    I like the cloudscapes and the landscapes. It looks like a beautiful day but I know that wind can spoil them sometimes. It’s almost always windy where I work.
    It’s nice to see the dandelion and the primroses. Our snow is melting but it’ll still be a while before they bloom here.

    1. On reflection, the dandelion might have been a coltsfoot. I had seen a dandelion just before and assumed this was the same. I hope that your snow goes soon. This seems late for it to be hanging about.

  3. That lichen is very different! I enjoyed the scenes through which you walked today and the big clouds in the sky were very impressive. We also had a very strong, chilly wind blowing all day so I sympathise with you not wanting to stay outside too long or attempt a cycle ride.

  4. I loved the views on your walk, the colourful flowers and that little waterfall. Your cycling friend has really gone the whole hog though cycling indoors like that must feel rather odd.

  5. I don’t think the pictures would be quite so impressive from the garage though Tom, think of the readers!!

  6. With all the colours and flowers and greenery, this post is absolutely redolent with Spring – I’ll use if for reference when I get fed up with the delay here. I do hope Mrs. T. finds a new manure mine in a convenient location.

    And finally, Zwift sounds a bit like something loaded the computers on some treadmills at my YMCA – last week I did a bit of a walk through New Zealand – had to keep my mind on where my feet were instead of the “people” I was encountering en route! It was convenient when it was too icy to walk outside, but for my taste, you can’t beat the outdoors.

    1. I agree of course. However showy the digital world is, it can’t compare with the real thing….but the real thing is pretty miserable outside our window today so I wouldn’t mind having the option.

  7. I am beginning to feel a sense of doom about the celandine I planted in my garden. Oops. I definitely got the magic feeling from that little waterfall and the daffodils along the road. Good idea to do a macro of the pulmonaria!

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