Sculpting A Sustainable Future

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Bealtaine Cottage images are popping up everywhere and especially throughout the Permaculture and Sustainable Living Movements. (This image was taken this morning…yes, it’s very mild for the 3rd of November!)
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Recently, the Transition Town of Kinsale in Cork used an image from the Bealtaine Cottage website, (You may recognise it!), promoting a series of talks and lectures in its, now internationally famous, Kinsale Arts Festival…and so the message of hope spreads!
This is from the website…

Sculpting a Sustainable Future with Transition Town Kinsale

KFEC Amphitheatre

28 September
2:00 pm Tickets Free

Talks and tours on permaculture techniques and ideas on local food Join Transition Town Kinsale as they explore the accessibility and freshness of local fruits and vegetables, including a guided walk through the permaculture gardens, talks on vegetarian cooking and eating, maps of Kinsale’s new edible landscape, and information on preparing lotions and creams made from organic ingredients. Plus talks from local growers such as Aimi Pinder of Kinsale Green Growers Farm. A fun, educational day – working together to sculpt a sustainable future.

Programme of Events

Friary Centre

2pm Dr Colin Sage: UCC/Chairman of Cork Food Council

Alternative Visions for Our Future Food Systems

2.30pm John Brennan: Leitrim Organic Farmers Co-Op

GMO – The Issue of Genetically Modified Organisms

3.00pm Mags Coughlan: Ballymaloe Head Gardener

Garden to Table

KFEC Amphitheatre

4pm Meet local organic farmer Ami Pinder and Community Herbalist, Niamh Geoghegan, Community Herbalist who will lead a guided walk through the Permaculture College Gardens exploring the herbs and wild food therein.

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As the seasons move from Autumn to Winter, changes are tangible in just a few day…
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The descent towards Midwinter has begun, with less than seven weeks to the shortest day.
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This is a great time of year to create gardens and creating a sustainable garden means co-creating with Mother Nature. permaculture at 010
Working with Nature to develop a garden which will continue to look beautiful with minimum work involved.
This little teapot will continue to be a home for nesting birds as the tree grows, eventually fusing into the branches.
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The most naturally planted gardens will allow you to reap unexpected food rewards from Mother Nature, such as these “Shaggy Inkcap” mushrooms growing across the gardens of Bealtaine.
The Shaggy Inkcap is an edible species that can be used to make soups or sauces or simply cut into strips and fried.
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Shaggy Inkcaps are an ideal ‘breakfast mushroom’, gathered when young and fresh and then cooked and eaten right away.
It is important to consume these mushrooms within an hour or two of gathering them, as they deteriorate very quickly even if kept in a refrigerator.
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Planting trees helps to store carbon from the atmosphere into the soil.
Trees will cool your home in summer and let in the winter sun.
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Make your garden climate-friendly and water-wise.
Understand your environment, weather patterns and the plants that thrive where you live…not what trends and magazines dictate.
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  Creating a haven by using a diverse range of plants, will go a long way in establishing a healthy garden.
Not only do you help increase plant biodiversity, but you also provide a habitat for animals, beneficial insects and birds. Happy gardening!


  1. Lovely post as always, Colette and such beautiful photos. They remind me to be inspired, to think outside the box and to plant 🙂


  2. HELP!!!!! Old, sick with one foot in the grave but still want to leave at least a SMALL mark upon the earth for helping with ecology! Everything is becoming too high tech for me! My desk top and only computer which also runs my only phone have serious issues all day. Can’t even call for much help when internet goes down because phone goes down with it! The entire world seems to be smarted and selfied up, and to my way of thinking this is AGAINST nature in many ways. But on the other hand is it even possible to live simply with the earth anymore!?? Collett, I know you must use computers to even do this blog, but other than the initial heavy duty land start ups are you able to basically maintain the cottage and yourself using a MINIMUM of all the new high tech crap?

  3. As usual your photograph are extremely beautiful and greatly appreciated…this time of your is so lovely…..I live on a boat in Sausalito and this time of year the herring come in and hundreds and hundreds of migratory birds come here….so spectacular…there are no words to describe this awesome event….so we all have our autumn happenings to be so grateful for….and your web site is so important to my week….love your work and the beauty you constantly create…..regards…Barbara from Sausalito, California

Your comments are welcome!