The wide blue yonder

Jersey tiger moth Greys Court

Today’s guest picture comes from my Somerset correspondent Venetia, who came across this Jersey Tiger moth while visiting the garden at Greys Court in Oxfordshire.

Jersey tiger moth Greys Court

I had a strange visitor today.  When I looked out of the kitchen window, I found Dropscone measuring himself against the sunflower.

Dropscone and the sunflower

Dropscone is the taller but the sunflower is the more handsome.

Still, sunflowers don’t make treacle scones and Drospcone does so he was very welcome.

He had harrowing tales of golf disasters to relate but the scones and coffee eased the pain.

Before he arrived, I had had time to admire the flourishing fuchsia…

fuchsia

…take today’s poppy potpourri…

poppies

…and watch a busy bee in a sweetie shop.

bee on poppy

When he left, I mowed the middle lawn and sieved some compost and then had to leave the good weather outside to set about selecting and printing the photographs for the Westerkirk Flower Show which takes place tomorrow.

I shouldn’t have left this task so late as there is a lot of work involved and  it was a pity to waste a good day by being indoors.  Still, I made a selection and my new printer worked well.

After a late lunch, I got out into the garden again and was once again bowled over by the numbers of butterflies about.  They were all peacocks…

peacock butterflies

…and red admirals…

red admiral butterflies

…but there a lot of them.  It was hard to find less than two on a buddleia flower cluster and there were often three.

red admiral butterflies

I did find one by itself…

red admiral butterfly

…but that was on a Michaelmas daisy which only holds one butterfly at a time.

I looked at some spiky dahlias.

dahlias

Mrs Tootlepedal wanted some pages printed for her Embroiderers’ Guild which is having an informal meeting tomorrow and when I went to print them out, the printer told me that it had a firmware update available and asked if would like to install it.  There are some invitations that are irresistible so I gave it the go ahead and all went well and encouraging messages were delivered.

Unfortunately, the update had ensured that my computer could no longer actually talk to the newly updated printer so a good deal more of a lovely day was wasted in muttered oaths, head scratching and a few well placed kicks.  Whether it was the kicks or some random button pressing I can’t tell but after a while order was restored and the print outs completed.

I went outside again.  It was such a good day that I decided to go for a walk up Meikleholm Hill.  I gave Sandy a ring to see if he would like to come too but he told me that he was relaxing in the garden with a cool beer and the crossword and was quite comfortable where he was…..but before I could put my phone back in my pocket, he had weighed up the beauty of the day against the charms of some cool beer and decided to come with me on the walk.  It was that sort of day.

The cattle are still off the hill and it is a wonderful place to walk at the moment, rich in wild flowers…

wild flowers on Meikleholm

…and golden with hawkweed and tormentil among harebells and others.

Meikleholm meadow

Along the path we took round the side of the hill was a new crop of blue flowers which I had come specially to see.

scabious

I couldn’t remember what they are called and had to look them up when I got home.  They are scabious but I couldn’t find any pictures of one surrounded with a little halo of leaves like this one…

scabious

…but it looks like the others so I think it must be  a scabious too.

There were hundreds of them on this particular part of the hill but very few elsewhere.  Curious.  Unfortunately they grew too far apart to make a carpet so I can’t give a very good impression of what it was like to walk among them.  You will have to take my word that it was very enjoyable.

When we got to the top of the hill, there were any amount of views to be had….

Esk valley
Looking up the Esk valley
Bigger hills beyond the valley
Bigger hills beyond the valley
View from Meikleholm
Looking across to the northern English hills

…and there were big skies too.

View from Meikleholm

On my way back home after leaving Sandy, I saw a small flock of homing pigeons resting on their loft.

homing pigeons

They too had been taking a little exercise.

Sandy and I agreed that it had been a walk worth worth getting out and about for.

My neighbour Liz’s garage was looking very colourful as I got back to the house….

Liz's garage

…and the garage owner herself was in the kitchen enjoying a cup of tea and chat with Mrs Tootlepedal.  I joined them and had a slice of another oat, ginger and plum bake which Mrs Tootlepedal had made earlier in the afternoon with the very last of our plums.

The plums have made excellent eating and we are waiting for the apples to ripen.  It shouldn’t be long now.

I added one of the views which I had taken on the walk to my entry for the Westerkirk Show and I had just finished printing it out when Mike and Alison came round.

Alison and I enjoyed playing Rameau, Telemann and Loeillet and that rounded off a busy and enjoyable day.

I even got a few flying birds when the homing pigeons obligingly did a fly past for me.

pigeons

So far the weather in September has been very good!

 

 

 

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

27 thoughts on “The wide blue yonder

  1. I like the shot of the bee on the poppy and of course all the butterflies. I see plenty but they’re always too busy to pose.
    I do love the forest and its trees but the treeless hills are like a siren’s song and I’d love to spend a week walking them.
    I don’t see the scabious here so I can’t tell one from another.

  2. I like that sort of dahlia with narrow petals.

    I know all too,well,what it is like to spend a good day partly indoors because of this and that setback.

    My computer hasn’t been able to talk to a printer for years. Fortunately, Allan’s can.

  3. The pigeons look to be spelling out some form of aerial message …or maybe a game of noughts and crosses. Loved all the butterflies and glad your September is behaving. Ours has been decidedly average. Is it too much to ask yours to behave until we get there? 17 sleeps to go😊

    1. It is looking a bit more stable but I don’t trust the forecasters at all at the moment. Are you coming to Scotland? We will be in France in 17 days time.

      1. We are planning to be around your way mid October. If you’re back from your French jaunt we could perhaps meet for a good cup of coffee…we’ll bring the cake😊

  4. Loved going with you on that walk, wildflowers and views, can’t get much better than that. Thanks for the fuchsia photograph and good luck in the competition.

  5. Liz’s garage is beautiful: the colours of Virginia Creeper are one of my favourite things about autumn (assuming that’s what’s growing over the building!). So far, Sept. here has been ridiculously hot with lots of wildfires in the north.

  6. Enjoyed all the photos of your walk, around your garden and the skyscape. Good to put a face to a name…we’ve seen the delicious looking scones and now we know the baker.

  7. Once again, a great crop of butterflies on beautiful flowers! Even with the great views when you go for walks, it must be very hard to leave the garden. Good luck at the show with your photos.

  8. Printers are mysterious things. Ours was playing up last week and not feeding the paper properly. I turned it upside down, heard something fall loose, tried again and found I had “mended” it.

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