Today’s guest picture is a one off. It shows two elderly people having a quiet sit down while visiting their granddaughter in London. It was taken by the granddaughter’s mother.
We had another pretty hot and sunny day today as the jet stream continued to hold the Atlantic low at bay. At its peak, the thermometer hit 26.6°C in the afternoon, just under 80 ° F.
It was cooler in the morning, so we got out into the garden after breakfast and pottered about doing useful things slowly until coffee with Margaret under the walnut tree gave us a break. I did take a moment put to cycle up to the Archive Centre to check on one of the fiche readers. A data miner had told me that it wasn’t working properly but it seemed OK to me.
I had resolved not to take too many pictures in the garden today, but events were against me. Thanks to visiting insects, bathing blackbirds and the sheer power of the flowers, I took far too many. They are going to appear in galleries so that readers may either skip through them or click to get some detail as the mood takes them. I’ll cut the commentary down to the minimum and let the pictures speak for themselves.
I start with the visiting insects. There were more of them about today and an actual queue formed at the red poppy. The large red damselfly on the lily leaf is a first appearance on this blog.
A set of of flowers with attitude follows. The flower in the chimney is a calibrachoa.
More white verbascums have appeared uninvited in the garden and Attila the Gardener is going to let some of them stay for a while to keep the photographer happy. The yellow verbascum has pulled itself together and straightened up a bit.
As the Common Riding, Langholm’s great day, which is always held on the last Friday in July, has been cancelled because of the virus, I thought that I should show how well the rambler roses which are used to make up the ceremonial crown each year are doing.
The crown will still be made even though there won’t be a mounted procession through our streets and I hope that one or two of our roses will be included.
I noticed a blackbird perched on the lilies in the pond and when I went back later, I found another one having a thorough going wash and brush up.
It was very hard to get a lot of work done as I kept on being distracted by more flowers.
(Yes, you are right. That is another phine phlox phlourishing.)
We read an alarming article in the weekend paper about a man who accidentally but not fatally poisoned his whole family with home grown courgettes. We are going to take care when we eat ours.
I had more goes at taking the perfect snapdragon picture. The results are getting better, but there is still work to do. (They also appear in today’s header picture.)
Two flowers get solo billing.
I like the way that the pale blue clematis beside the front wall has a very sympathetic colour relationship with the wall behind it.
And I like the look of the alstroemeria in the shade of the plum tree.
I had filled the bird feeder and there was a steady stream of siskins to eat the seed. I caught one perching on the fake tree after lunch.
Mrs Tootlepedal, who had been working hard all morning while I messed about with my camera, sensibly settled down for an afternoon siesta. I am still way behind my monthly cycling schedule so I got my bike out, filled my water bottle to the brim, and set off to do a few miles. Not having had a warm up walk today, it took my legs a while to get into the swing of things, but once I was over Callister, they started to enjoy their work.
I went through Gait and stopped at the top of the hill overlooking the Solway plain. I was struck by the sight of the Gretna wind turbines below me. It is not often that you see them in a straight line like that.
As a bonus, there was a good looking orchid in the unmowed verge just beside me. It might be a common spotted orchid.
This marked the end of the hilly part of my ride and I was soon in flat farming country, where almost every view has a pylon in it.
Although I had already taken enough pictures for two days, I kept an eye out for wild flowers. It didn’t take an expert to spot them.
This collection is between the old and new A7 roads. It had meadowsweet and lady’s bedstraw with knapweed, daisies, clover and other things beside.
I had done 24 miles by this time and was happy to see the slopes of Whita ahead of me, showing me that I was not far from home.
I got home in nice time to have a cool shower and be ready to join the regular family zoom meeting. In spite of the warm weather, my brother and sisters had been out and about and we shared an interesting collection of pictures from our various adventures.
There was a special treat for our tea as Mrs Tootlepedal had been growing kohlrabi for the first time. The seeds were a gift from our friend Nancy, and they have done very well in the vegetable garden. Mrs Tootlepedal dug one up . . .
. . . and roasted it in thin slices. It was very tasty and we look forward to eating another one. The trouble is that they take up a large amount of space in the bed for quite a small end product, so we are never going to get very many.
The flying bird of the day is a siskin.
There have already been too many flowers of the day.