Today’s guest picture comes from my friend Bruce who was struck by the elegant simplicity of this device for opening all the windows of a glasshouse near Denholm in one fell swoop.
The forecasters tend to look on the gloomy side of things and although we were promised a morning of rain, thunder and lightning, in the end we got nothing more shocking than another heavy shower and the arrival of Dropscone for coffee.
Dropscone was due to play in a golf tournament near Denholm in the afternoon so he was a bit apprehensive but unless he was very unlucky, he should have been all right because the rest of our day here was fine, often sunny and quite pleasantly warm for once too.
This let me get out into the garden to pick some of Mrs Tootlepedal’s carrots. We are plagued by carrot root fly so Mrs Tootlepedal has been taking extra precautions this year and they seem to have paid off. Carrots have joined the beetroot and wild raspberry jam in the home produce section of our kitchen.
The wild raspberries produce a rather ‘pippy’ jam but it does have a very good flavour.
The scientific rain gauge shows just how heavy our brief showers have been…
…but I was able to get out into the garden to do some dead heading and tidying up. The last of the delphiniums are now assisting the compost.
By early afternoon, not only was the washing hanging out and drying quickly but the poppies were holding their heads up in a very satisfactory way. I didn’t photograph the washing but I did snap a poppy or two.
Once again the bees had not been discouraged….
…and I was particularly pleased to see a small tortoiseshell as well as the more common large white.
The tortoiseshell was hiding in a box ball but I should be able to get a better picture in a few days if it keeps coming to the garden.
I had received an unexpected letter from Germany a few days ago and in it, a lady who has started to read the blog fairly recently introduced herself and told me that she would be coming to Canonbie. She added that she would be happy to share a cup of tea, a biscuit and some conversation with me. We had a mutual friend in a colleague who taught across the landing from me in Langholm Primary School some forty years ago.
A cup of tea alone is a considerable inducement but when a biscuit is added, who can resist so I got on the fairly speedy bike, readjusted my new mirror and set off to cycle down to Canonbie by my usual route.
Instead of looking for wild flowers today, I thought that I would look at views on my way.
There was no shortage.
As you can see, it was a beautiful afternoon with the added bonus of not being too hot so that when I got to the house that I was visiting, I was in good order to pay a social call.
My welcome was very warm and the tea was refreshing, the biscuit nourishing and the conversation interesting. It was useful to get a view of Brexit and Britain as seen from abroad as our press is generally very insular and we don’t have much of a view of what is going on over the Channel. I was pleased that my blog had lead to such a sociable and informative occasion.
I stayed an hour and then cycled on home and took one last view on my way.
I thought that the completed silage and the puddle gave a good reflection of our changeable weather.
The wind was very brisk again and I was happy to find it pushing me back up the hill into Langholm. We should be grateful for the brisk wind, as it has been helpful in getting things dry after the heavy rain showers.
When I got back home, I had enough energy left from talking and cycling to mow the greenhouse grass and trim back the climbing hydrangea so that it no longer threatens to block our gutter.
I see when I look at the picture, that the trim might need straightening up a bit.
I also had time for a look at two flowers, a nicotiana, a favourite of Mrs Tootlepedal who loves the scent in the evening and a red astrantia, which has waited until the paler varieties are dying back before making an appearance. As regular readers will know, I dearly love an astrantia so I was very pleased to see this one finally coming out.
I was also pleased to see a water lily in flower. Often when rain fills up the pond, the water lilies get drowned.
It has started to rain again as I write this. We have several more days of sunshine and showers to come but if the balance between the rain and shine is the same as it was today, we won’t complain too much.