Today’s guest picture comes from my Lancastrian correspondent Paul’s visit to the Lake District. It shows a well positioned seat placed in memory of Hugh Walpole. It is looking out over Derwent Water.
We had another warm and dry day here, though the sun only made occasional appearances. Indeed it even tried to rain as I cycled round the shop after breakfast. However, it got ashamed of itself and soon stopped.
Mrs Tootlepedal drove off to the council dump at Annan to get rid of as much stuff as we could cram into the rather small boot of the Zoe, while I went off to the health centre to get a routine vitamin injection. We both got back in time to have coffee with Margaret on the lawn in one of the sunny spells.
As we sipped and chatted, once again the garden was full of butterflies with the red buddleia being the most popular port of call for them.
At times, almost every flower seemed to have at least one butterfly on it.
Just beside the bench where I sit at coffee time, the verbascum is having a second burst of flowers.
While we talked, a scruffy blackbird perched on the handle of a fork that Mrs Tootlepedal was using to prepare the ground for planting the hydrangea that we have been given.
After coffee, Mrs Tootlepedal got back to gardening and I wandered around, offering a helping hand when needed, and taking pictures when not.
A lone white rose has come out to join the Crown Princess.
Small tortoiseshell and red admiral butterflies visited a number of different flowers, dahlia, cosmos, potentilla and rose.
I was a bit tired after yesterday’s pedal so I went inside for a sit down and some bird watching. The siskins were as lively as ever….
…but I did manage to find a moment in the bottom left picture in the panel when they weren’t fighting.
A greenfinch posed for me.
They are very superior birds and I liked the way that this one rose above the rough behaviour that was going on beneath it.
I got a strong red Bulgarian Carrot chilli pepper out of the greenhouse and made some lentil soup with added heat. While it was cooking, I visited the garden again. The dead heading is really working well on the little red poppies. There were five out yesterday and more than double that today. When I looked closely, a lot of them had visitors and the computer showed me that they were tiny hoverflies.
After lunch, I did the crossword and had another look at the birds. A pigeon had something to say…
…but a blue tit was keeping its own counsel.
I was gradually wasting a fine and warm afternoon when I pulled myself together, got my cycling gear on and got ready to go for a pedal.
I wasted another few minutes before leaving by wondering how tall the sunflowers are going to get eventually (we will be able to look them in the eye from an upstairs window if they go on like this.)…
…and counting all the butterflies and bees that I could see on one area of the sedum.
The clouds had thickened up a lot by the time that I got going, but it was pleasantly warm and the wind was light so I was happy enough, especially as my legs were quite co-operative after a hesitant start.
The fifth turbine at the new windfarm has now got its blades on and can been seen from the Wauchope road, and there seemed to be a new tower in view as I cycled over Callister..
…but when I looked again from the Solwaybank road, I could see the fifth turbine but not the new tower. The crane was attached to another small section of tower. I can’t quite work out what I was seeing and will have to visit again soon to try to get it all sorted out. There are ten more turbines to go up so I will have plenty of excuses to go and check on progress.
On my way round to the back road, I stopped to admire a patch of autumn colour and noticed rose hips and snowberries in the hedge behind me.
While I was going along the Solwaybank road, I passed the wild orpines and checked to see if they were attracting butterflies. They weren’t but they did have a pair of large bumble bees on site.
And I was very happy to see a horse proving the truth of an old saying.
Further along the road, I passed one of the few hawthorn trees which has actually got a good crop of haws this year….
…and as I came past the Bloch farm, I saw a selection of birds on the overhead wires looking very like the tablature for a three string guitar.
A close look showed that they were starlings.
The gentle wind blew me home and I got back in time to help Mrs Tootlepedal put the hydrangea into position in a flowerbed next to the middle lawn. As this involved a good deal of heaving and lifting, it is just as well that there were two of us on the job.
Tomorrow we will put the irises that were moved to make way for the hydrangea into a gap left by the removal of the hedging plants that Mrs Tootlepedal had taken to the dump in the morning. It is all go in the garden at the moment.
The flying bird of the day is a chaffinch.