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Posts Tagged ‘cardoon’

Today’s guest picture comes from my neighbour Liz.  She enjoyed this misty view on one of her morning walks recently.

Mist on Whita

There were no views at all when we woke up this morning, as the hills were shrouded in clouds and a fine drizzle was falling.  Luckily I had a stint in the Welcome to Langholm office to do so the miserable weather didn’t trouble me.

I was kept very busy putting  data into the Archive Group database while entertaining Dropscone, who had news of a recent golfing triumph to pass on and John, another friend, who was recovering from a visit to the physiotherapist nearby.  What with golf and creaking joint talk and two visits from tourists seeking a welcome and the computer work as well, the two hours passed in a flash.

It had stopped raining by the time that I got home but  I found Mrs Tootlepedal engrossed in the tricky matter of balancing some accounts rather than gardening.  After we had had a cup of coffee with our neighbour Liz, I foolishly offered to lend Mrs Tootlepedal a hand with her accounts and the afternoon was well under way by the time that the figures on both sides of the ledger had obediently fallen into place.  Although it is very annoying when columns don’t add up, it is very satisfying when they finally do.

Still, a lot of quite good weather had gone by unused which was a pity.  We went out into the garden and while Mrs Tootlepedal got down to work, I looked around.

nasturtiums

A couple of cheery nasturtiums beside the front gate

Cardoon

A last look at a cardoon before Attila the gardener gives them the chop soon

I did a little much needed dead heading and upset a good number of bees and hoverflies who were looking for pollen.  At one moment, almost all of them chose the same poppy.

poppy with hoverflies and bees

We stood for some time watching the crowd, our mouths open in astonishment.

poppy with hoverflies and bees

After all, it was quite an astonishing sight.

Because my flute pupil Luke was due in the early evening, I didn’t have time to go for a cycle ride but it was such a pleasantly warm and calm day by now that I left Mrs Tootlepedal hard at work and went off for a short walk.

Beside the river I stopped to enjoy a wagtail wagging its tail and a dipper dipping.

Wagtail

The dipper was in all action mode, disappearing under the water for ages at a time and dabbing about vigorously when it emerged.

dipper dipping

It did pose for me for a brief moment though.

dipper

At the Kilngreen, I saw a lonely herring gull….

herring gull

…and some restful ducks.

ducks in the grass

This was my favourite.

duck

Occasional sunshine brought out the colours which are beginning to appear all around.

Esk

Although there are plenty of fallen autumnal looking leaves about….

autumn leaves

…there are still many more on the trees.

leaves

The combination of many greens and some red and yellow meant that there was always a delight for the eye as I walked along.

early autumn on the castleholmearly autumn on the castleholmearly autumn on the castleholm

I kept my eyes open for other smaller things.  This fungus on a tree stump interested me greatly.  I don’t think that I have seen anything like it before.

tree stump fungus

They growths are tiny and I thought that they were sprinkled crumbs when I first saw them

It was a really pleasant walk and I was sorry that I didn’t have the time to be out longer.

When I got back to the house, I reflected that it was lucky that we don’t shut the front gate very often…

nasturtiums on front gate

Our friend Mike Tinker was chatting to Mrs Tootlepedal in the garden and she was telling him of great plans for improvements for next year.  I look forward to photographing the results.

I had a last look round…

fuchsia

…and was pleased to spot a red admiral butterfly on a rudbeckia.

red admiral butterfly

We read in the paper this morning that it has been an exceptionally good year for red admiral butterflies and we have certainly seen a great many in our garden in the last few weeks.

Then I had to go in to get ready for the flute lesson which I thoroughly enjoyed.

I was quite pleased to have no further obligations for the day as I am feeling a little tired after dashing from end to end of the continent last week.  Somehow sitting in down in trains, although it is very enjoyable, is also quite tiring.

An early night won’t do me any harm.

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Today’s guest picture shows a new style of letterbox which my friend Bruce spotted while out in Langholm.  You have to get up very early to post a letter in that part of town.

new postbox

We got up quite early today as Mrs Tootlepedal and members of her embroiderers’ group were due to spend a morning sewing and chatting at the Producers’ Market in the Buccleuch Centre to encourage knowledge about and interest in their group.  I took her along in the car with her box of stuff and when I had dropped her off, I continued on up the road to Bentpath to put my photographs into the tent at the Benty Show.

It was a delightfully misty morning.

Bentpath mistBentpath mist

As I got to the field, it looked as though the swallows might be getting ready to leave.

swallows on wire

I put my photos up among some quite hot competition and then went back to Langholm where I visited the Producers’ Market to buy fish, coffee, honey and venison…..and see what Mrs Tootlepedal and her gang were up to.

embroiderers guild

They were having a good time.  The little boy on the far left of the picture stayed and did three solid hours of needle felting.

He was the son of the venison lady.  She gave me quite a shock when,  as I went to buy my supplies, she said in a firm voice, “I want to have a word with you.”  I wondered what bad thing I had done but it turned out that she had been inspired by a conversation we had about cycling at a previous market and had subsequently got on her bike in a substantial way.  She is even making local deliveries of venison on her bike these days.

As a reward for being inspirational, she kindly gave me a gift of two venison sausages curled neatly up to look a bit like cycle wheels.  I was much touched.

If anyone else would like to be inspired, I am happy to oblige.

I drove off up the hill in the car after leaving the market in the hope that some of the early mist might still be lying in the river valleys but it was already retreating up the hills…

Ewes valley

…so I went home, mowed some grass, did a bit of dead heading and watched butterflies.

butterflies

On phlox, dahlia, buddleia and Michaelmas daisy. You name it, it had a butterfly on it.

I didn’t neglect the bees…

bee on poppy

…especially as I had just bought two jars of local honey.

And sometimes I could see butterflies and bees simultaneously.

butterfly and bee

The poppies were as gorgeous as ever….

poppies

…and the cornflowers and crocosmia are blending well….

cornflower and crocosmia

…but the star of the day was a newly opened lily of enormous size.

lily

It is some sort of lily longiflorum (well named) which Mrs Tootlepedal very untypically purchased over the internet in the middle of a sleepless night.  Buying stuff on the internet in the middle of the night is not recommended but this impulse purchase looks as though it is going to turn out very well.

After lunch, I went back up to Bentpath to visit the flower show and check on my pictures.  I had managed to get a second and two thirds so I was modestly pleased as the standard of the other pictures was really good.

The weather was very kind….

Benty show

The show field doesn’t slope down quite as much as it seems in the picture!

…and the show has a very beautiful setting beside the river…..

River esk

…with the village church….

Westerkirk Church

…and the fine bridge….

Bentpath bridge

…as a backdrop.

As well as photos, food, flowers and vegetables, there are sheep in a curly horn contest….

Benty sheep

…children’s and terrier races, a wood carving demonstration and two hound trails.

I like the hounds.  They are superb athletes.

The hounds follow a scented trail over the hills and come plunging down through the bracken, leap fences….

hound trail

… and when they come to it, they leap down the banking and dive into the river…

hound trail

…swim and run across the water, leap up the bank at the far side…

hound trail

…and sprint for the finish line.

hound trail

Or at least the leader did.  The following hounds took a more cautious view of the whole watery part of the race.

hound trail

Approaching with suspicion and then getting back out again on the same bank.

After a good deal of encouragement from their owners, they did finally get across and headed for the finish line…

hound trail

…though one or two laggards were still out somewhere on the hill.

hound trail

The hounds were followed by a fell race at an altogether more sedate pace….

Benty fell race

Rounding the marker flag at the top of the hill

…though rather disappointingly, the human runners use the bridge to get back to the show ground and don’t have to fling themselves into the river.  In the first hill race that I ever ran at Newtonmore in the Highlands, we had to wade through a waist high river just to get from the field to the bottom of the hill.

I made a final visit to the show tent….

benty show

Flowers, fruit and veg, baking, walking sticks and photos filled every corner

…and then made my way home.

It had been the very picture of a village flower show.  There was sheaf tossing and a barbecue still to come for those with stamina.

I was pretty tired by the time that I got back so although the weather was still very pleasant, I did nothing more energetic than walk round the garden with Mrs Tootlepedal who had been very busy clearing and preparing flower beds for next year (she is always thinking ahead) before sinking into a comfortable chair and putting my feet up.

The flying bird of the day might have been a buzzard flying above the field at Bentpath but my hand was too trembly to catch it properly so it turns out to be the first few petals of the first cardoon flower of the year.

cardoon

 

 

 

 

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Keith, a correspondent from Edmonton, Canada says,”Many of the buildings here in Edmonton feature limestone that is just chock-full of fossils and hunting them is a good way to pass time when one is taking shelter from a thunderstorm.”  I think that there must have been a storm because he sent me this as today’s guest picture.

Edmonton fossils

We were far from stormy here today as our spell of very reasonable weather continued.

We had a lull in the appearance of new poppies so I had to settle for purple pictures from the back bed….

moss rose, buddleia and knapweed

…and phlocks of phlox.  The white ones are doing well and have flower heads almost the size of phootballs.

phlox

In the vegetable garden, the cardoon is threatening to take over the world and now towers over me.

Cardoon

Photo courtesy of Mrs Tootlepedal Photo Services Inc

It has a several flowers waiting to come out but sadly they may be just too high in the sky for ordinary mortals to enjoy.

While we were in the veg garden, there was quite a lot of sympathetic nodding to be done as Mrs Tootlepedal bewailed the incessant depredations of the sparrows which constantly nip the tops off growing plants.  We may not get any runner beans this year at all thanks to them.

Somehow I managed to pass the morning without doing anything more meaningful than the crossword and making coffee and taking a few more pictures in the garden.

Among the new arrivals are these alstroemeria…

alstromeria

…and this Japanese anemone.

Japanese anemone

Welcome as new flowers are, these two signal the turning of the year and the start of the descent into autumn so the welcome for them is a bit ambivalent.

Nasturtiums are in the same camp.

nasturtium

It feels that the later flowers are a bit early this year but we have had an untypical weather pattern to contend with so maybe the flowers are confused.

We are not short of colourful corners though.

colourful corner

Spirea, ligularia, nasturtium and roses

One thing that caught my eye today were these petals on this clematis which have neatly curled up to make a point.

clematis

After lunch, we settled down to watch a short but exciting stage of the Tour de France.  I took the precaution of changing into my cycling gear, pumping up the tyres on the fairly speedy bike and filling the water bottle  before I started watching the telly so that as soon as the race finished, I could get going and not loll about just thinking about going.

This cunning plan worked well and I was soon off on the twenty mile trip down to Canonbie and back.  Tuesday’s long ride had left my legs in fine fettle and I pedalled away very happily, easily able to persuade myself that the casual spectator would have had a hard time distinguishing between me and a real cyclist.

in spite of the best efforts of Genghis the Grasscutter, wild flowers are still to be seen beside the Wauchope road.

orchid and harebell

Sometimes in large numbers.

Yellow agrimony

Yellow agrimony

I took a closer look at the agrimony and the thistle too.

Yellow agrimony and thistle

I need three things to come together for a vigorous ride – good legs, good breathing and a friendly breeze and today for once, I had all three.  After I had taken the wild flower pictures,  I pressed on, enjoying the feeling of going well.  It may sound a bit silly but so pleasant is the sensation of cycling when all is going well that it is easy to day dream a bit and remember younger days.

Small hills soon put a stop to that sort of thing but it is not a bad thing to have some illusions in life.

I stopped for a second look at wild flowers when I was nearly home.  The knapweed is glorious on the old A7.

knapweed

Mixed in with it were some greater birdsfoot trefoil (thanks to Clare Pooley for the ID) and a clump of bright yellow flowers which Mrs Tootlepedal thinks is yellow bedstraw.

trefoil and yellow flowers

To my great delight, I managed to achieve an average speed of 15 mph for the Canonbie circuit today for the first time this year and it goes to show what a good idea it is to watch some top class cyclists going like the wind just before you set off for a ride.

There was time for another walk round the garden when I got home.

The lilies on land are thriving….

lilies

…and there is a lily on the water in the pond too…

Water Lily

….though it is a bit cramped for space.

The rose of the day is Special Grandma which is flowering freely.

Special Grandma

In the evening, Mike and Alison came round and more wind was expended in blowing my flute as Alison and I played through the three excellent pieces which Alison bought on her recent Welsh holiday.  I will not be short of music to practise for some weeks or  months yet.

The flying bird of the day was resting on a hedge.

blackbird

 

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Today’s guest picture(s) come from Dropscone’s highland holiday but were not taken by him.  They are the work of his recorder playing daughter Susan, who made the montage, and show scenes from their visit to Dunrobin Castle, the falconry there, the seaside and a nearby broch.

dunrobin

We were once again the beneficiaries of a Scandinavian high pressure system which is keeping the moist Atlantic weather well away from us.  Although not quite as sunny as yesterday, it was still a fine day and a welcome degree or two warmer.

I spent the period after breakfast getting myself mentally prepared for the arrival of the first scones for what seems like an age.  Luckily when Dropscone arrived bearing the scones, they were well up to standard and my anticipation was fully rewarded.  They went down well with some Honduras coffee.

After Dropscone left, I walked round the garden with Mrs Tootlepedal, sporadically doing some dead heading and lending a hand when she needed one but mostly looking at flowers and insects and snapping away.

marigold and Crown Princess Margareta

A marigold in full bloom and Crown Princess Margareta full of promise

The dahlias were attracting a varied clientèle at their pollen bars

dahlia with bee

Though it was possible to find some bee free blossoms.

dahlia

I wandered into the vegetable garden to pick up some apple windfalls and eat a few raspberries.  I had picked enough raspberries recently to make a couple of pots of jam yesterday so I was happy to see a few more still there today…

rasps runner and courgette

…but the runner beans and the courgettes are pretty well past it now.  We have eaten a lot of both.

I was joined in the vegetable garden by Attila the Gardener who declared the the time of doom had come for the cardoons and tore them out of the ground.  They have big seed heads.

cardoon seeds

Walking back through the flower gardens, I recorded three different varieties of potentilla.

potentilla

They seem to flower endlessly.

While I was pondering on this and that, I was disturbed by some vigorous chattering from small birds and looking across the road at our neighbour Liz’s house, I saw a curious sight.

sparrows on wall

The noise came from a small flock of sparrows which were greatly excited and were sticking and unsticking themselves from the wall her house.  There must have been something to eat there but what it was, I can’t imagine.  I have never seen this behaviour before.

I left them to it and went off to mow the drying green and then went in to do the crossword and have lunch.  I had hoped that my Mediterranean diet while I was in Marseille would have made my brain work better but there has been no noticeable effect so I had  a sardine sandwich for lunch.  I live in hope.

After lunch, I watched the birds for a while.

blue tit and robin

Two cute favourites

coal tit

A determined coal tit

I refilled the fat ball feeder and this provoked a flurry of activity from the sparrows.

sparrows

Mrs Tootlepedal went off in the car to visit a garden centre, get her eyes tested and then roam a retail outlet and I got the fairly speedy bike out and went off for another short ride.

The weather has been quite breezy lately so I have been trying to do a twenty mile ride each day rather than wait in hope of a calmer day and then do a long trip.

Today I did 22 miles to Gair and back.  The way home has slightly more downhill than the way out but the easterly breeze evened matters out so I did the outward  and return journeys in an almost identical time.

I stopped near Gair to take two contrasting views from the same spot.

Gair view

Gair view

In spite of the grey clouds, it was  a pleasantly warm day for October and I enjoyed myself.  I passed some men sticking blue topped stakes into the edges of the road and asked if this was windmill related activity.  They told me that a windmill is due to be delivered to the Ewe Hill wind farm along this very road tomorrow morning.  I am going to see if I can get up early enough to see the delivery as the towers for the windmills are enormous and should make a good picture.   I am not betting any money on being able to get up early though.

Mrs Tootlepedal’s eyes passed her test and she returned in cheerful mood with many bags of soil improver for her flower beds and two bags of sand for the lawns when they get spiked.

While I was waiting for her return, I whiled away the time by looking at some regrettably uncivil behaviour in the sparrow world.

sparrows

This was caused by the fact the the jackdaws had come while I was out cycling and nearly finished off the fat balls which I had put out before my ride so there wasn’t much left for the sparrows to share.

An evening meal of cauliflower cheese rounded off a very enjoyable day.

The flower of the day is a dahlia  (and a busy bee)…

dahlia

…and the flying bird of the day is a sparrow flapping its wings like mad in an effort to get to the feeder first.

flying sparrow

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Today’s guest picture was sent to me by my friend Bruce whose wife spotted an interesting creature on their windowsill.  Is it a moth or a butterfly?  I don’t know.

moth

We had a fairly miserable morning as far as the weather went but bang on cue, the day brightened up a lot just after noon and the rest of the day was very pleasant.

This let me get out on the bike for the first time for a fortnight but the dry conditions unfortunately had an added brisk wind mixed in with them which made pedalling very hard.  My legs were not in good condition so I did a dull twenty mile out and back ride and was pleased to get off.

I only stopped once to show a rowan tree along the road which has not been visited by birds yet.

rowan

It has been a very good year for rowan berries

I mowed the drying green and the green house grass when I got back and I am now fully caught up after the holiday.  I also had time to look at the flowers in the garden during the afternoon.

pretty in pink

Pretty in pink

delicate

Delicate

honeysuckle

Honeysuckle

cardoon

The last of the cardoons

The birds at the feeder were the usual suspects…

sparrow and blue tit

..but a young starling and an old jackdaw came too.

young starling

jackdaw

I am sure that this bird was a headmaster in a previous life

In the evening, we went along to the Buccleuch Centre for a jazz concert by a British singer, Tina May and an Italian pianist, Enrico Pieranunzi.

There was a select audience but the performers didn’t stint and gave us a first rate performance.  We are very lucky to be able to listen to such quality so near to home.

The flower of the day is three poppies…

poppies

…and the flying bird of the day is three sparrows.

flying sparrows

Sorry about the rushed blog but it is late and I am tired.  Perhaps this is because I have put additional photographs onto the blog of day four of our holidays in France.  You can see it here.

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The guest picture of day comes from my brother Andrew, who looked up when he was visiting York Minster.

York Minster

Once again, we woke to a gloomy, damp day but it had the goodness to stop raining while I visited the dentist for a check up.   It was pleasantly warm as I walked home having been given the all clear but the garden was still looking fairly damp when I got there.

nasturtiums

However, it was still and dry enough to tempt some insects out…

bees and butterflies

…and if you look closely, you can see three beasties collecting pollen from the poppy above at the same time.

insect on dahlia

I can’t make up my mind whether these rather fluffy yellow things are bumble bees or not.  I don’t think that the ones on the poppy are but I am less sure about the one on the dahlia.  Once again, I hoped to be helped out by knowledgeable readers.

My daughter has been in Portugal for a short break and very kindly sent me a tin of genuine Portuguese sardines so we had some very tasty sardine pâté for our lunch.  She knows that my brain needs all the help it can get from oily fish.

After lunch, the weather brightened up a lot and we walked to our church in glorious sunshine to celebrate the life of Charlie Edgar, a member of Mrs Tootlepedal’s Church Choir who died recently.  Mrs Tootlepedal  has had a long association with Charlie, both through the choir and the local amateur operatic society of which he was a mainstay for many years.   We sang two cheerful hymns and heard a very fine eulogy written and read by a friend so although memorial services are by their nature not something that you look forward to going to, this one was a very fitting tribute to a good man.

In spite of the sunshine, it was still a bit too soggy to contemplate some mowing when we got home so after a pause to catch up on the highlights of yesterday’s stage of the Vuelta on the telly, I got the fairly speedy bike out and did a very modest vuelta of my own.

It was perfect cycling weather – warm, sunny but not too hot and with a light wind to provide a little cooling when needed.

I went out of town up the Esk Valley and enjoyed the views as I went.

Gates of Eden

The ‘Gates of Eden’

Bentpath

Bentpath

Telford Library

The Telford Library at Bentpath founded to provide local antimony miners with books to read

As I pedalled up the road towards Bailliehill, I stopped to admire the heather..

Heather

…and looked back at the Esk in the valley below.

Esk at bailliehill

Soon, I had climbed out of the Esk valley and had dropped gently down to the start of the Water of Milk…

Water of Milk

Whereas farmers get very basic bridges, I got a fine stone bridge to cross a small tributary a bit further along.

Bridge near water of Milk

The road rose up from beside the stream and as I pedalled along, I could look across and see the tops of all six of the new windmills on Ewe Hill on the other side of the valley.

Ewe Hill Windmills

I was very pleased to see that they were indicating that I would have what wind there was at my back for the last ten miles of my journey.

As I rode up the hill at Callister, I passed some birds who are planning a trip of their own quite soon.

swallows

While I pedalled along, I reflected that the bicycle really is a wonderful invention.  A day or two ago, we watched the finest runners in the world run the Olympic marathon on flat roads.  Today, I went about the same distance over much hillier terrain and under my own steam in a time some ten minutes quicker than they had managed.   Running is a very pedestrian way of getting about, as they say.

Those interested in the route can click on the map below.

Garmin Route 23 Aug 2016

I was hoping to go for a little flying bird walk when I got back but the clouds had returned and the light was not promising enough to make it worthwhile so I wandered round the garden instead for a few minutes….

rudbeckia and nicotiana

Rudbeckia and Nicotiana are adding to our pleasure with colour and scent respectively

cardoon

A second cardoon has flowered

sweet peas

The better weather had brought out more sweet peas

…and then went in to have a shower and make baked eggs in spinach with a cheese sauce for our tea.    I had some very tasty cheese to hand so this rounded off the day very well.

After tea, we watched the highlights of today’s stage of the Vuelta so we had a double helping of cycling to enjoy.  It looks as though it will be an interesting race.

We are promised a day of sunshine tomorrow.  We are very much looking forward to that.

The flower of the day is another in the long line of poppies.  I find them very hard to resist.

pink poppy

 

 

 

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Today’s guest picture comes from Venetia, who has temporarily deserted Somerset to visit friends in Yorkshire where she saw this traditional scene at the Shipley cricket ground.

Shipley, West Yorkshire

At least it stopped raining here today for the most part but it remained grey and windy which was a disappointment.  I had foolishly stayed up into the wee small hours of the morning to watch Mo Farrah win his second gold medal so I was even greyer than the weather.

Mrs Tootlepedal went off to sing in the church choir and since cleanliness is next to godliness, I tidied up the kitchen in a leisurely but thorough manner while she was out.
When she came home, we had a stroll round the garden, catching up on the dead heading that we had missed in the rain.

Non gardeners may be baffled about the repeated references to dead heading but plants grow flowers to produce seeds and if the seeds are left, the plants think that their job is done and stop producing new blooms.  With flowers like poppies and cosmos, taking off the heads of the flowers that are over before the seeds are set, encourages the plants to produce new blooms and keeps the colour in the garden going.  Tough on the poor hard working plants but great for us.

The proof of the pudding….

poppies

It works for cornflowers too…

cornflowers

…though they are more fiddly to dead head properly.  That is why, the gardener and I try to start each day with a walk round the garden, snippers and a bucket in hand.

The dahlias are others that benefit from dead heading.

dahlias

A light drizzle started so Mrs Tootlepedal went inside to put a few miles in on her bike to nowhere upstairs and I made some potato latkes for our lunch.  Since we have a good crop of potatoes and onions from the garden to get through, potato latkes may appear quite frequently on our menu over the coming weeks.

After lunch we foolishly turned on the telly and two hours later were still sitting there as the Olympic men’s marathon finished.  Luckily this is the last day of the great event so we may get our lives back.

Overwhelmed with a sense of guilt about our idleness, we leapt up when the race finished and while Mrs Tootlepedal went out into the garden, I got the fairly speedy bike out and went for a briskish pedal round my standard 20 mile loop.

When I got back, I found a large heap of evidence of gardening activity.

Crocosmia

Some crocosmia which has outstayed its welcome.

Mrs Tootlepedal is full of ideas for next year’s garden.  She likes the way this bed at the end of the front lawn has turned out…

front lawn bed

…and is intending to have a similar bed on the other side of the centre path.  This will entail digging up and shifting a very large and ancient azalea but she is not daunted.  She never is.

I had a good walk round while she continued her tidying up activities.  I have been too gloomy about the plum crop.   It looks as though it will be very fruitful….

plum tree with plums

…if we can just get enough sunshine to ripen the fruit.  I have sampled the first few to ripen and they are tasting delicious.

In the vegetable garden there is lots to look at as well.

Beans, courgette, turnip and potato.

The fruits in the bottom right frame are potato apples and are not for consumption as they are poisonous.

My current favourite flowers have survived the rainy days very well and are looking better than ever.

cardoon and lily

The cardoon flower is the only one of several heads to have come out.  If the rest actually flower, it should be a great sight.

The poor old Golden Syllabub on the other hand is really not enjoying the weather at all and I had to hold the flower up in one hand to get a picture at all.

Golden Syllabub

This is a pity as it is a very pretty flower in good conditions.

I like clematis a lot and Mrs Tootlepedal has a good selection out at the moment…

Clematis

…but they too could do with some better weather to bring out the best in them.

While we were in the garden, we were disturbed by the clatter of hooves as several horses and riders passed the end of our road.

horses in Henry Street

We didn’t know what the riders were up to but we were glad that we were not still living in reiving times when the clatter of hooves in this area might signal the loss of your cattle and the burning of your house.

I was hoping to go for a bird watching walk after I had changed out of my cycling gear but the clouds overhead were thickening all the time and by the time that I had looked at the perennial nasturtium…

perennial nasturtium

It is having a second flush at the moment

…it had become too dark for the zoom lens so I retired indoors and stayed there.

Although the Olympics are over, we will have the daily highlights of the Vuelta (Tour of Spain) cycle stage race to keep us entertained over the next three weeks.  If you could get fit by watching sport, we would be the fittest people in the world.

No flying bird of the day then but a fine flower to make up for that.

poppy

 

 

 

 

 

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