Today’s guest picture is another fine dawn dog shot from sunny East Wemyss. Our son Tony gets up very early every working day.

If I had got up early, I would have found a misty morning here, but the mist had cleared and it was another sunny day by the time that I emerged. Mrs Tootlepedal brought a number of starlings on the lawn to my attention . . .

. . . and it came as no surprise to find that they were pecking away at the grass.

I don’t know what they had found to eat, but they were very neat eaters and didn’t make a mess of the lawn at all. They soon flew off and didn’t return. While I was out with my camera, I had a look around for butterflies, and when I couldn’t find any, I took a picture of the last rose on the Queen of Denmark . . .

. . . a late flowering clematis . . .

. . . and a profusion of sweet peas. I can’t keep up with picking them.

Before it got too hot, Matilda took her father and me to the play area in the Buccleuch Park. I sat on a bench and chatted with the parent of two ex pupils of mine while her grandson played on the new equipment. The parent left and we were joined by Clare. After a while, I left Matilda and her parents to enjoy themselves and retreated home for a coffee.

After coffee, Mrs Tootlepedal and I set off in the car to go up to Cronksbank on the Tarras Valley Nature Reserve to help out with the new tree nursery which they are going to establish there.

It was a glorious day to be out on the moor . . .

. . . but it was pretty hot in the sunshine as the group of volunteers transplanted over 1000 rowan seedlings into trays where they could develop before planting out. They were still working when we left after an hour and a half of gently cooking in the heat of the day.

After a late lunch, we played cards with the others in the relative cool of the kitchen, and then I had a look at the birds, just missing a flying chaffinch.

I am pleased to see a few chaffinches back on the feeder as they have been conspicuous by their absence lately.

Mrs Tootlepedal was out in the garden transplanting a large tray of willow seedlings which she had brought back from Cronksbank into individual cells. She had filled one tray by the end of the afternoon but still has a lot to do.

I looked round for butterflies with more success. A small tortoiseshell . . .

. . . had come to join the peacocks . . .

. . . but they were very fidgety, and kept closing their wings and flying off so I didn’t get any good pictures.

I did think about going for a cooling cycle ride but the volunteering earlier on had taken all my energy, so I wandered slowly round the garden instead, letting my eye be caught by birds, bees and flowers.

It was warm so I thought that I might sit for a while in a shady seat, but someone else had got there first.

Jackdaws were finding something to drink in a neighbour’s gutter.

Matilda joined me to take pictures for her six flowers panel of the day, and left me to select the best from the ones that she took. I liked these six the most.

I kept an eye out for butterflies and spotted this one.

Alistair cooked us a delicious pasta alla norma for our evening meal and we followed that with some fresh raspberries and ice cream. We are living well while our visitors are here.

The flying bird of the day is a passing jackdaw in a clear blue sky.

Published by tootlepedal

Cyclist, retired teacher, curmudgeon, keen amateur photographer.

23 thoughts on “Growing

  1. Your Starlings visited my garden where they cleaned up a lot of Ants in my flagstones. I was very happy they came.

  2. I had to look up pasta alla norma. I love everything about eggplants, from the deep and lovely colour to the smooth texture of the skin to the delicious insides, and was very pleased to read about that recipe. I suspect it will feature on our table sooner than later 🙂

    A pigeon in a tree – not something we see around here very often!

  3. Raspberries and ice cream sound so good. Very impressed with Matilda’s pictures. Also with your son’s picture at the top of the post. Then there are the peacocks.

  4. I can imagine the delicious aroma filling the kitchen and wafting into the garden while Alastair was cooking! Matilda’s photographs are wonderful to see.

  5. Beautiful pictures from Tony and a fine panel of flowers from Matilda. A delicious evening meal as well, thanks to Alistair – well done to them all, and to you and Mrs T for the volunteering.

  6. I enjoyed the selection of photos from you and Matilda. The sweeping view over the moor is a favorite. Your butterfly bush looks very lush and beautiful. For some reason none of ours are doing as well this year. Drought time is always difficult, but I think they were severely stressed the last two years. Even though this summer has been more lenient with the heat, they are struggling this year, and produced few flowers.

    1. The buddleia has done pretty well but it is going over quickly. We still have very few butterflies. I have to look hard to see one at a time when the garden should be full of them.

  7. That summer sun looks hot. You and Mrs. Tootlepedal are to be commended for volunteering in it. The peacocks are truly amazing butterflies. And I expect to see large flocks of starlings here foraging by the roadsides, it seems to be tradition with them. I may have just gotten interested in pasta again.

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