Today’s guest picture comes from my Lancashire correspondent Paul who is visiting Cumbria again. It shows the “Tufa house”at Holehird Gardens near Windermere, run by the Lakeland Horticultural Society. He is thinking of volunteering with them.
We had another dry, cool and windy day here today, and I was in no rush to be up and about, so it was lucky that Sandy came down for coffee and got my day kickstarted. Sandy has felt perky enough to check the battery on his electric bike, but not actually to use the bike yet. I am hoping that we will get to go for a ride before too long.
After he left, I went out and did some more daffodil dead heading, and cycled round to the shop for provisions.
When I got back, I went in and looked at the birds through the window. We have a lot of customers at the moment, and I took a series of pictures over a two minute spell. This shows how quickly the picture at the feeder changes . . .
. . . though the observant reader will have noticed that the same two siskins stay on their perches as goldfinches and chaffinches whirl about.
A minute later and all was peace and quiet.
I had time before lunch to wander round the garden again and enjoy the colour. We are getting very excited by the azaleas and hope that low temperatures tonight don’t do them any harm.
I had a look at the pond and saw an interesting but unknown (to me) bug, as well as two little whirligig beetles making waves.
After lunch, I went for a bicycle ride on my road bike. Since I have to supply all the power for this bike, I think that I should probably describe it as my push bike.
Wild flowers are starting to appear in enough numbers to brighten up any cycle ride, and I spotted this selection on the road to Gair.
Unlike my last ride in this direction when everything was smothered in very low cloud, I could see the wind turbines at Solwaybank very clearly today. . .
. . . but as they had their backs to me and were going round briskly, it was not as welcome a sight as it might have been. I could see that I was in for a hard ride into the wind to get home.
At least I could get a good view across the Solway Firth.
Dandelions are growing with great enthusiasm at the moment.
It was hard work pedalling the push bike into the brisk wind, and I ended up with my slowest ever average speed for this particular route. I took the chance to stop for a breather at the bridge at Irvine House and looked both ways . . .
. . . and I needed another break a mile later to appreciate new growth on a spruce.
I got back home after 26 miles, feeling very much as though I had done a marathon.
Mrs Tootlepedal was talking to a friend at the garden gate, and I had another wander round the garden before I went in for a cup of tea. Mrs Tootlepedal likes the lone red panel on the otherwise orange tulip, and I like the gaudy bunch. The drumstick primulas have lasted well but are beginning to go over now.
The sun was shining after we had eaten our evening meal, so Mrs Tootlepedal went out to sow some broad beans and I lent a helping hand. It is hard to ignore the tulips at the end the drive on a sunny evening . . .
. . . and a lone tulip on the drying green also caught my eye.
I had to pop down to the Co-op for a late shop and I met Dropscone there. He was also topping up his supplies. On my way back, I paused on the suspension bridge to capture a beautiful scene to end the day.
The flying bird of the day is a chaffinch, keeping himself to himself in the midst of the midday mayhem.