Cottage and Gardens

Morning at Bealtaine Cottage is a lazy affair as far as the cats are concerned.

No sooner do I get out of bed than the cats find a warm spot to snooze away the morning!

www.bealtainecottage.comThe morning was dry and with no threat of rain, it was important to get into the garden and get some more work done.

Most of the work is coppicing and logging, to make a new wood pile, ready for next winter.

www.bealtainecottage.comI am yet to get down to the Bog Garden and clear around the ponds and besides which, my waders have sprung a leak!

I shall wait until the weather warms up and then do a summer clear.

Moss has grown everywhere over the course of a wet Autumn and Winter.

It’s possible to collect bags of it just on the gravel on the lane-way! permaculture

Masses of buds everywhere, especially here on the Red Robin (Photinia).

I cut it back quite hard last Autumn!

Cleaning the steps and pruning back the Beech trees and roses.

bealtaine cottage permaculture

Another eight weeks or so and the London Pride on either side of the steps will be in bloom.

The Willow fedge will be growing and greening!

Euphorbia is greening and growing…and spreading a lot!

Time to pot some up for gifting later in the year.

Magical reflections in the magical gardens… even the smallest amount of water in a container, pulls the sky down into the garden!

And the silver Moon Pennies of the Lunaria have endured the ravages of the winter in this little sheltered spot under the Laurel arch.

The stillness and warmth of the cottage is comforting after working in the cold air outside.

In the pantry…the lovely happy faced terracotta jar was bought for £4 in a Charity shop and holds all the garlic grown last summer in the potager beds.

It has little air holes and keeps a cool temperature inside…just perfect!

This is another bargain picked up at a Boot Fair and costing £8…it holds a candle inside and is a storm-proof garden light.

The shower room window faces south and catches lots of light…a good place to over-winter plants.


  1. Hi Collette,

    In bed with a dose gives me opportunity to catch up on your emails.

    You have a delightful eye for a photograph. Love them. Your garden / woodland looks wonderful.

    Can you tell me how long you’ve been there at Bealtine? I’m about to start planning / planting a food forest in SW Donegal and I’m trying to get a sense of what it will look like in yr 1 and yr 2 etc.

    Also you refer to the ‘Willow fedge’ which looks like what I’d call a ‘woven hedge’. Can you please tell me what is a ‘fedge’ as you use the word?


    Robert Jordan

    Aka Robert Curris

    • Hi Robert and hope you feel better soon X
      This will be my tenth year at Bealtaine this May 2014. If I ever get my book published the pics will be included…from the beginning!
      A Fedge is usually constructed using Willow that is woven into a loose basket weave…this continues to grow and the growth is either cut or woven back into the Fedge each year.
      Blessings X

  2. It looks like you are almost ready for spring. We can’t wait for autumn. The hot weather is wearying but I fear we are up for at least a month more of it before we can start to enjoy our parched gardens again

  3. These photos are so lovely – I really like what I grew up calling “Silver Dollars,” both those growing outside and the ones in your shower room. Nature in all its glory – so nice to see bits of bright green somewhere in the northern world.

  4. It is so wonderful to read about Spring. It gives me hope. I looked at my pots of perennial herbs, which are living along the foundation of the house this winter, and wondered if they have survived. I am so ready for the rejuvenation process that comes with spring! The growing season is such a miracle!

    Yesterday you asked about pictures of my knitting. I have started a Facebook page for Irish knitting. I will add to it as I complete some other projects. I have two childrens sweaters near completion. Though not traditional in color, their pattern still tells their lovely story. I made my son one when he was little and it eventually survived seven children in the extended family before going on keep someone elses child warm. Gives one a nice feeling…This is the Facebook page Will add more when I have completed projects.

  5. your words and pictures are lovely colette im desparate to start in our garden here but at the moment the weather is holding us back,i can’t wait to start using the seed that you have lovingly sent us .
    blessings to you
    gail x

  6. Great photos; I love reading about spring elsewhere; it won’t come here ’til mid-May, most likely. You cottage is so peaceful looking, too. You have as close to a perfect life as I can imagine. ~ Linne

    • This land has helped me connect to an understanding of the Divine, as Mother Nature has responded with such joy and created in my eyes and those of others what you describe as ‘a perfect life’…connecting with Mother Earth enables it for all. XXX Blessings XXXColette

Your comments are welcome!