Today’s guest picture gets my seal of approval. It comes from Venetia’s Highland holiday when she went to visit the Moray Firth at Burghead.
Summer continued in Langholm today. In fact it got hotter, reaching 27°C in mid afternoon. Under the circumstances, I thought that I ought to reverse my usual practice and do something useful in the morning, so as well as wandering about looking at the flowers, I sieved some compost before coffee.
The flowers were worth looking at, although it is not always the best policy to try to take flower pictures in bright sunlight. The warm weather had finally encouraged some flying visits to our roses which was encouraging.
In fact, it was quite difficult at times to find a rose which didn’t have a bee on it.
The first of the Shirley poppies has arrived and it was looking very bright.
Flowers have also appeared on the Stachys, the woolliest flower in the garden.
Margaret came round for coffee and we sat in the shade under the walnut tree again.
After coffee, I cycled round to the corner shop for supplies and when I got back, I spent some time dead heading and weeding.
I enjoyed some early flowers of the delphiniums . . .
. . . and then I turned my camera onto groups of flowers rather than single blooms.
The philadelphus on the right in that last picture will appear again later on in this post.
It got too hot to stay outside for long, and we went in for a bit of coolness and some lunch. There was crisp lettuce from the garden to go with my cheese and tomato sandwich.
After lunch, I went out again to see if I could catch a flying bird while sitting on the bench outside the kitchen window. I wasn’t quick enough and this siskin was firmly perched long before I clicked my shutter finger.
I looked at some white roses near the feeder instead . . .
. . . and finally found a bee visiting an astrantia.
By this time, it was too hot to be active outside, so I went in and watched today’s stage of the Tour de France. This turned out to be a good decision, as the stage had a thoroughly dramatic climax, with a breakaway rider caught by the peleton within yards of the finish line, and the stage victory going to Mark Cavendish, a rider whom many had written off years ago. As he has always been a favourite of ours, we were very pleased for him.
When the stage had finished, we had a cup of tea and then, as it had cooled down a bit, Mrs Tootlepedal went out into the garden, and I went off for a short cycle ride.
It was still pretty warm, so I was pleased to find myself cycling into a lightly cooling breeze as I cycled up the main road north out of the town to Mosspaul. My plan was to pedal gently up the hill to Mosspaul, stopping to take few pictures on the way, and then to whizz down the hill back to town with the wind behind me.
It is always good when plan comes to fruition. Here are the pictures on the way up.
And here is the picture looking south from the top of the hill at Mosspaul.
It may not be the best view of the ride as far as scenery goes, but from the point of view of cycling, it is perfect. It shows the start of ten and a half miles gently downhill with a following wind. It took me 33 minutes to get home!
When I arrived back, I found that Mrs Tootlepedal had been very busy while I was out. She had cleared a clematis away that was growing up through the middle of the philadelphus that appeared in this post earlier. She has been meaning to do this for ages, so she was very happy to have finally got it done.
The philadelphus looks a lot happier too.
My bicycle ride had been most enjoyable and it also had the benefit that I wasn’t able to watch the football match between England and Germany which was going on as I pedalled. I enjoy watching football from time to time but the incessant burbling of the commentariat before, during and after the game is often very hard to bear.
I had a last look round the garden in the evening sunshine.
An evening meal of cold meat, tomato and goat’s cheese salad, with some more lettuce from the garden, was a really good way to end a wonderful summer day.
I failed to get a flying bird at all today, so four blackbirds will take pride of place instead.
And the Queen of Denmark is the flower of the day.