Unexpected calm

Today’s guest picture is another from Venetia’s recent outing. As well as interesting cliffs, she saw a whole field of flax.

Between the two inches of rain that fell yesterday and the strong winds that are expected tomorrow, today was a sort of placid buffer zone, grey and occasionally drizzly but cool and calm, not really a summer day but not a bad day either.

Like the day, there was not much happening in the garden, except for a lot of tidying up work from the gardener and the gradual reduction in the height of the hedge between us and our neighbour Betty.

But as always there were things to look at and so I looked at them. More alstroemerias have appeared…

…and although the roses have been a bit depressed by the weather, they are still producing new flowers all the time.

WordPress offered me a rounded frame and I thought that it suited the rose, so I have used it.

A few more of the fine clover flowers in Mrs Tootlepedal’s green manure bed have appeared. I couldn’t resist a look…

…and a new stouter calendula has joined the simpler versions.

I went to have a look at the Potentilla beside the dam and found that it was flowering freely.

There are other Potentillas in the garden and I have put flowers from two of them into a panel with a Welsh poppy and a perennial wallflower. They belong together as they are all very long lasting sources of colour. (The first Welsh poppy appeared on the 2nd of May.)

The red poppies are still drawing in bees, even in the wet conditions.

It was raining very gently as I took these pictures and there was some doubt as to whether we would get a garden coffee meeting. I consulted Margaret and Liz and the general opinion was that we would take no hurt from a few drops of rain, so we put on our coats and I brought a brolly out and we had a short coffee and conversation meeting before the rain was voted too much of a pest and we broke up.

Liz has been impressed by the height of the ligularia which is growing well just beside where we sit for coffee and we were able to show her the first flowers on it today.

Of course the rain waited only until we had packed up and gone our respective ways before it stopped. Mrs Tootlepedal went back to using netting to give as much support as she could to delicate flowers threatened by tomorrow’s strong winds and I cut a bit of Betty’s hedge and shredded the cuttings.

A berberis that was pruned is shooting back up…

Mrs Tootlepedal made bacon and eggs for lunch and I had time for another quick look at the geraniums in the garden….

…and a peek into the vegetable garden which is full of beans.

The runner beans are potential but we have begun to eat the broad beans.

I had a look at the bird feeder where the siskins were behaving normally…

…and then we had a most enjoyable Zoom meeting with Al, Clare and Matilda, with a display of gymnastics from Matilda and a rendition of Frère Jacques as a round from Matilda and Clare. Al has acquired a new microphone and it improved communications a lot. I am going to look into getting one too.

After the Zoom, I had a look at the weather and decided that it looked stable enough for me to get a twenty mile tour of Canonbie in.

I took a helmet with a peak to keep my glasses dry if it rained, and a rain jacket as well. This was enough to persuade the weather gods that I was giving them proper respect, and they let me get round in the dry.

The mown verges looked sad.

…while cattle were practising social distancing.

I met a couple of cyclists on the single track section of the old road at Byreburnfoot. They were just getting back on their bikes so I slowed down as I came to them. It was lucky that I did because if I had been going at full tilt, I might not have realised that this was in my way…

…until it was too late. It is easy not to see something, even if it is quite obvious, if you are not expecting it….as motorists who come out of side roads straight in front of cyclists will testify.

The picture above was taken looking back after I had squeezed under the fallen tree. It blended in more when seen from the other side.

There were some good looking raspberries growing on the bank beside the fallen tree and I have put them in panel with foxgloves which escaped being mowed thanks to a telephone pole and a combination of meadowsweet and knapweed which are the wildflowers of the moment near Irvine House.

There is a lot of water about and this little cascade was at the traffic lights near Irvine House.

Doubtless because they are a bit worried about Mrs Tootlepedal and I losing all restraint and hugging passers-by now that lockdown is being eased, the powers-that-be have festooned the town with notices telling us to behave.

We will do our best.

There is a wonderful St John’s Wort display opposite the Buccleuch Centre, and I stopped to record it just before I got home.

I refilled the feeder when I got in and the additional supplies allowed a greenfinch to have a calm moment on its perch.

As usual the afternoon ended with a sibling Zoom meeting and then we drove down to the Co-op to do a little shopping and get rid of our glass recycling at the waste disposal site there. We hoped that anyone who was watching us would realise that the big noise was being made by three months of bottles, not just one heavy drinking session.

Mrs Tootlepedal made a tasty lentil dahl for our evening meal and the day ended with rain coming down and the wind getting up. We have our fingers crossed that the wind will be forgiving.

I only managed to spot a nearly flying bird today. It got its foot down before I could get my shutter finger down.

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, novice photogrpaher

21 thoughts on “Unexpected calm

  1. I once worked for an English lady who introduced me to scarlet runner beans but she had me grow them more for the flowers than the beans. They always had to be on the road side of the garden so passers by could admire them.
    Your St. Johnswort looks very different than ours even though I think ours originally came from there.
    The clover is beautiful and that bee has a lot of work to do in that poppy.

  2. Those are cheery alstroemerias. The flowers are a pleasant sight, even in the rain. Things have started to dry out a bit here, and there is no rain in sight for the next week.

  3. Its all looking very colourful at your place. Glad you and Mrs T are abiding by the notices and maintaining social distancing and also glad your lockdown has eased.

  4. Good to see that some pretty wildflowers missed out the cutting blades being wielded around! Hope the rain and wind don’t bring any more trees down on your cycle routes…could have been nasty! Love the cow photo!

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