Today’s guest picture comes from my Somerset correspondent Venetia, who is in Cornwall. Today she visited the Tremenheere Sculpture Gardens, near Penzance. She found this nicely painted bench in front of a bridge. Knowing that I like both benches and bridges, she sent this picture to me.
It was a rather autumnal and misty morning today as I drove Mrs Tootlepedal down to Carlisle to catch the train to London where she was going to visit relatives.
It was still very overcast when I got home, but after a cup of coffee, I went for a walk round the garden and found that the gloomy weather had not discouraged our visiting bees and hoverflies at all. They love the dahlias as much as I do.
I was going to try to take pictures of all the different bees and hoverflies that visit us, but they kept on flying away at the crucial moment, so I just took a selection instead.
I did find some insect free flowers too.
As you can see from the nasturtium picture, by midday, the clouds were clearing away and the sun was coming out. This brought bees onto our developing sedum . . .
. . . and after just one or two in the cloudy conditions, it also brought a sudden rush of butterflies onto the buddleia.
The flowers on the buddleia are going over, and it was a case of doubling up for the visitors.
The bees like the buddleia too, but they and the flies like the mint even more. It was really buzzing.
I went in for lunch and then got myself organised for a cycle ride as it was now a really beautiful summer day. I had done a set of back exercises last night, and this seemed to have settled my legs down quite nicelyI gave them a testing start to my outing by going up a couple of short but steep hills as I left the town on the Bentpath road. My plan was to go round the Crossdykes windfarm if my legs were willing, and come back over Callister. My legs were willing, and my plan worked out well.
I took a few pictures on my way up the Esk valley to Bailliehill (click on a picture of you want to see the full view). . .
Coming from this direction, it looks as though the road is going to go straight through the windfarm . . .
. . . but it avoids it, and I was soon on my way back towards Langholm, stopping again from time to time for more pictures.
A couple of days ago the commentators on the Tour of Britain cycle race were remarking that the television flattens out the hills. The pocket camera does this too, and certainly that last picture of the climb up Callister doesn’t do justice to quite a stiff pull. I was glad to get to the top and have six miles downhill back to Langholm. They took me twenty minutes of pure pleasure.
I was just recovering from the ride, when Mike Tinker came round to enquire if Mrs Tootlepedal had got to London safely (she had). We had a cup of tea and a biscuit. I went out into the garden with him when he left, and we admired the late sunshine striking the salvias.
I spent a moment or two checking on the bees on the sedum . . .
. . . and the butterflies on the buddleia.
It was busy in the garden.
I also found that the small tortoiseshells have a fondness for French marigolds.
Perhaps they think that the colour suits them.
I couldn’t find a flying bird today as the feeder was extremely quiet, so I was pleased to have recorded a flying fly of the day instead.