Lughnasa and the Solstice…Ancient Time

At certain times today, as I was working outside, I had a distinct sense of Autumn.

The way the sun shone on a plant, the smell from the earth around my feet…it was quite tangible.

The growing cycle in the west of Ireland adheres very much to the old Celtic calendar.

It is easy to tell the season just by walking the land and watching shadows…

Autumn begins on the 1st day of August.

This cycle is in essence closely linked to the Solstices and Equinoxes of the year.

 It is the  same solar alignment that determines the correct time for Lughnasa and this is also the exact same alignment for Bealtaine.

The ancient calendar is correct, as it follows the sun and planets rather than the time of man.

I am more attuned to Natural Time as I work on the land.

I am also much happier in this time mode.

The midsummer solstice was last month, four weeks ago and harvesting is well under way.

I do believe that animals are more closely tied into these ancient seasons than we care to admit.

I have enjoyed the company of many rescue dogs and cats over the years and often observed their habits, right down to times when they will bury food.

Flo, here, is a little hobo dog and has been used to fending for herself for most of her life…

Flo is a persistent food secreter and will often sit on a stash in her basket!

On that note, I think I’ll just go and check…

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  1. I too have felt that summer was turning, despite the date on the calender. It’s been a pretty miserable year for my garden this year (and last) so I think I need to sit down and decide where I’m going wrong in my plantings. If these cool, wet summers continue then I think some of us will be changing what we grow.

    • We must adapt, that’s for certain and is the best way forward for all. Creating sheltered areas in the garden is a plus and this can be done in many ways. It’s always good to take stock and assess!

  2. Here in Oregon, the raspberries have just finished and the blackberries, logan berries and marionberries are all coming on strong. Peaches are a few weeks away, and applies are coming on strong but won’t be ready for at least another month. Red potatoes and onions are harvested already and green beans are producing. Because of the late summer, we are still waiting for zucchini and the winter squash has set fruit but its progress seems slow. We have an abundance of basil, oregano, rosemary, and other culinary herbs that are filling the dryer at the moment. I am planting cole crops now for the fall harvest. Peas will go in next week for another round. We have an abundance of black locust trees which are dropping leaves and make great mulch and compost. I have 4 varieties of grapes here in my little city plot and like to dehydrate them into raisins to add to puddings at Yule. Elderberries will soon be ready in the hills outside of town which I make into a syrup to keep me healthy through the winter.
    Collette, you have inspired me to put together my own WordPress site which I hope to get up and running by Mabon. I’m not much of a “techie” but a friend is helping to ease me into the 21st century.

    Bright Blessings!

    • It all sounds idyllic…such sheer abundance from Mother Nature!
      You will inspire others, of that I am certain…and what better way to extol the wonder of Nature than through her bounty.
      Bright Blessings to you too X

  3. I was born at the time of the Midsummer Solstice…20 June, and I quite like the idea of it also being the time of the Longest Day. The wee dog Flo looks cute, and no doubt relieved to have been rescued and found a good home. Does she get along OK with Jack and her ‘cousins’ Che and Madame Missy!

    • Jack adores Flo. Flo bosses him about mercilessly. They look ridiculous together, but, they are a match made in heaven! Missy bosses everyone! Che likes Jack and they play together…both outlaws! Flo has a handle on the entire situation!

  4. Here in the northwest U.S., the quality of light changes to a soft yellow, the harvest begins in earnest and we look forward to the abundance of local fruit. Summer starts here around July 1st. Today it is cloudy, cool and misting. Thanks for your posts, even when they are terse, my day is brightened.

    • Thank you.
      Lughnasa is a magical time…all the seasons have their beauty.
      The fruit harvests there must be incredible.
      What fruits are in season now?

Your comments are welcome!