For the roses

You know how it is when you need to make an urgent garden purchase? Like a new rose bush. You can live for years with the same old roses and then it seems essential that you get some more. Well they were for a special family celebration – but the point is that I needed roses, today. But I have a problem. I live in the centre of the city which means that all the decent garden centres lie in a semicircle stretching from between six and and fifteen miles away. It was a lovely day so I took my bike – the long way. First I got the train to Linlithgow, then cycled along the canal:


passing some inviting tea shops:

but I resisted and kept going, through a field:

and arrived at the lovely Hopetoun Garden Centre. Dodging all the happy shoppers, heading for the tea room, I had a picnic amongst the birch trees:


and wandered around the little show gardens:

bought my roses and returned to my bike. One little gripe about this garden centre – lots of car parking, even a ‘dog park’ but no cycle parking – but I used a handy sign post:


Back through the field and along the canal, this time giving the train a miss and cycling the whole way back to Edinburgh, passing many dog walkers, canoeists, cyclists, long boats, anglers, a castle, some cows:



over an aqueduct:


coffee break with the roses under another bridge:


another several miles along the canal and into the city, over another aqueduct and down to the Water of Leith:


and then home. It was a very long day – twenty miles or so of cycling – but almost entirely away from traffic and with some glorious views.  Now I just need to plant out the roses.

3 thoughts on “For the roses

  1. What a lovely bike ride and a lovely way to buy your roses. I do the same sometimes, but as I don’t have panniers I’m restricted to what I can fit in (or am willing to have poking out the top of) my rucksack!

  2. I do a lot of cycling and I would have thoroughly enjoyed your route, it looks fantastic. There’s nothing better than a good bike ride with no time limits. Panniers are brilliant…unless they get stolen which mine did, but I’ll get some more because they are so much better than a rucksack.

    I have a policy of walking if it is under 4 miles and cycling if up to 10 miles away. More than that, such as a 20 mile each way ride I do once in a while.

    Sounds like you had a wonderful day!

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