Berry pickers

Today’s guest picture is the last from my brother’s visit to to our area.  On his way home, he and Justin stopped at the Bowes Museum.

Bowes museum

I was worried that I might have missed my chance to cut the grass thanks to spending a day pedalling about yesterday but I needn’t have worried as it was a perfect day for grass cutting today too.

I got busy after breakfast with the drying green and the green house grass….


…which are not big areas but they still need looking after.

After a pause for other things, including coffee, I then did the two lawns and Mrs Tootlepedal went round and strimmed the edges so everything looked quite neat and tidy.

lawns mowed

While I was out and about in the garden, I couldn’t help noticing the poppies.  More opium poppies have arrived and they have been joined by the first of the Shirley poppies.

opium and shirley poppies


We are hoping for many more.

I saw one poppy that was only just hanging on today.

poppy with one petal
It looked a bit like a smart lady going to the races in a silly hat

There is a metal fence between the flower garden and the vegetable garden and there is a lot happening on both sides of it at the moment.

There are at least three sorts of clematis
ginger syllabub, Bobbie james and honeysuckle
Ginger syllabub, Bobbie James and honeysuckle

The archway in the fence is a work of art in itself.

rambler roses

In the vegetable garden, the main crop potatoes are looking very promising.


We are eating the earlies at every opportunity.

Mrs Tootlepedal reported that she had seen huge flocks of sparrows in the garden but when I went out, I could only see one….


…and she also reported seeing a blackbird picking gooseberries to feed its young but when I went out I could only find one that had been at the blackcurrants.

blackbird with blackcurrants

The green house is playing host to a number of colourful residents.

courgette and celosia
A courgette in a tub and a celosia sitting on a shelf
The petunia is looking sensational

Mrs Tootlepedal is keeping these plants in the greenhouse to keep it looking cheerful when she is working in there.

Outside there are lots of Icelandic poppies keeping things cheerful there too….

Icelandic poppy

…and Crown Princess Margareta is at a peak of happiness.

Crown Princess Margareta

After lunch, I took a tip from the blackbird and went out and picked another pound of blackcurrants and found that I now had enough (4 lbs) to make some blackcurrant jelly.  The blackbirds may be taking some but there are masses left still for me to pick.

It is always a nervous moment when you have put the hot jelly juice into the jars and you have to wait to see if it will set properly.  On this occasion, the jam thermometer did its job and the six jars of jelly have set perfectly.

All I need now is someone to bring some scones round to try it out on.

The astrantias are still exerting their pulling power on the bees….

bee on astrantia

…and there seems to be at least one about every time that I go past.

We were very sad that Andy Murray has got knocked out of Wimbledon but his brother is still going in the mixed doubles so all is not lost…and the Tour de France is always good viewing.

In the evening, I went off to sing with the Common Riding choir and as we got ready to sing, we could hear the clacking of horseshoes on the road below as the pony ride out, a recent  addition to the annual festivities, went past our window.

Pony ride out 2017
The cornet and his right and left hand men lead the procession of ponies along the High Street

The singing went well and we should be well prepared for the concert in a fortnight.

I did find a flying bird today.  It was that blackbird making off with the berries.



Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

23 thoughts on “Berry pickers

  1. The lawns and gardens compliment each other well. I love the shot of the one petaled poppy.
    That’s a nice fence, and I like the arch. It can only get better as the plants grow.
    The berry stealing blackbird with a beak full seems a bit greedy.

  2. Glorious poppies, and a very fitting comment about the “silly hat” poppy! The blackbird looks like it’s doing a belly landing on the fence.

  3. The blackbird looks guilty as charged with currant theft. 🙂 Your gardens are looking very beautiful, and those flower panels always a treat, especially the poppies today.

    It would be lovely to hear the Common Riding choir!

  4. With all the photos of your flowers one would think you’d visited one of our local Arboretums. A beautiful, plentiful display. I particularly enjoyed the lady going to the races with her silly hat!

  5. The lawns and gardens are looking immaculate as always. It’s a joy to see the wider shots now and then to see how everything looks together, like the arch in the metal fence, beautiful.

  6. Reading your blog today was akin to a blissful visit to a beautiful place filled with a sense of order, productivity – and peace. It was a lovely read.

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