Flat out…and flat back too

Today’s guest picture is a bit belated as Venetia has been back from Madeira for some time but I found that I had overlooked this picture she took of a slightly strange statue in Funchal, possibly Madeira’s answer to King Knut.

madeira King Knut

There was a lot of excitement here today as enormous machines threatened the well being of our new bridge…

digging out the dam 2

…but negotiated the narrow gap beside the bridge successfully in the end.

The tractor and trailer were there to collect the mud that was being scraped away from the banks of the dam by a skilled digger  operator…

digging out the dam

…as the dam was being cleared of years of neglect.

Our bit of the dam was untouched as it has been well looked after by Mrs Tootlepedal and our neighbour Kenny who has done a power of work to keep it clean and clear.

I crossed over the bridge while the tractor was at work and went to the monthly producers’ market at the Buccleuch Centre where I was able to procure five different sorts of cheese together with some fish and meat.

Back home again, I did some watering and some weeding.  It is becoming apparent to me how much weeding Mrs Tootlepedal does as she goes about the garden.  I have to be careful as I can’t always tell the difference between a weed and a valuable plant  but I am pulling up the weeds I recognise.

I did find time to take a picture or two.

The clematis at the front door is not showy but it persistent and new flowers keep coming out.

front door clematis

I promised you phlocks of flox and here they are.

white phloxpink phloxpurple phlox

They will add some welcome colour to the garden.

Not that there isn’t some colour there already.  New poppies keep popping up…


…and the tropaeolum is running riot in the yew.


For sheer numbers of flowers, the spirea are probably in the lead at the moment both in very dense clusters on one bush…

spirea 1

…and slightly more spread out on another.

spirea 2

I took some wider shots as well.

This is the bottom arch in the fence between the veg garden and the middle lawn

bottom arch

You can see white philadelphus, pink Sweet Williams and purple foxglove through the arch…and just a glimpse of the Oooh La la clematis on the right.

The Common Riding rose grows over the arch and on the fence behind the drying green.

rose excelsa

This is the fence seen from the lawn side.  The first white rose is Goldfinch and the one further along is Bobbie James.

bench area

It was very warm again so I had a quiet morning and after lunch, I watched a bit of the first stage of the Tour de France.

Inspired by this, I got out my new bike and set off down the main road to the south.  My belief was that most of the world would be watching football on the telly and so the roads might be pretty quiet.

My faith was not misplaced.

brampton road….and after twenty quiet and flat miles, my new bike had a rest on a well used bench..

newtown bench

…while I had a drink of water and a date or two.

I found of shot of the fairly speedy bike at the same bench in 2013.

bike at Newtown
It was December and the sun was shining then too

It was quite windy which was a bonus as it kept me relatively cool but it did make bicycling a bit of a battle and for one reason or another, possibly the heat, my legs gave out on the way home and I had to settle for a slow ride back with a rest break to enjoy the bridge at Longtown on the way.

Longtown bridge

Even with soggy legs, I enjoyed the ride and I had enough energy left to do some more watering and pick some peas and beans  for my tea.

I had hoped to get home without finding out the score in the big football match but a helpful fellow having a smoke outside the pub in Smithfield told me that England were two nil up as I went past and a cheery gang of drinkers outside the pub on my way back indicated that they had held on to win.

Everyone is pleasantly surprised.

The flower of the day is a rose mallow, new to the garden this year and a very striking plant.

rose mallow

It offers an optical conundrum: are the green bits in front of or behind the petals?


Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

26 thoughts on “Flat out…and flat back too

  1. Oh my – the flower of the day is stunning. I’m also stuck by the pure white of the phlox, and the image of the roses against the fence – lovely. Re. the 2013 photo – green grass in December – wow!

  2. I wasn’t interested in the football score either, concentrating on Wimbledon, but an unexpected female winner had her ovation in two waves, the second being prolonged. The commentator said that something must have happened at another simultaneous sporting occasion. For the second goal, I was in the garden, taking a few minutes off to water some plants. A noisy wave of strong emotion emerged from the open windows in houses all around me, informing me of England’s success.

  3. Beautiful flowers – well done for keeping them going in the dry weather.
    I noticed the football score as my bus was help up in Camden Town due to over-excited fans blocking the road for some minutes.

  4. The England result was happy for me…Iam now 12 points clear in our family pool, with Belgium to win. Keeping that sort of result quiet would have been impozsible 😊

  5. The flower of the day is stunning, both the flower itself and your image of it! I also enjoyed the wider views of the garden to see the wonderful color combinations that Mrs. T plans out so well.

  6. You’ll be getting the star award for watering as the garden looks in fine form. Love the arch and fence and the other garden views and that rose mallow is delicious.

    1. The new bike is a tourer and comes with a back rack so I choose to put stuff in there that I might otherwise have in my back pockets or in a bag on my back.

  7. What a charming garden gate! That rose mallow is striking. Are you going to divulge the answer as to whether the green bits are behind or in front?

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