Resilience of The Bealtaine Project as Drought and Heatwave Ravage Ireland


Extreme weather conditions have struck once again here in Ireland.

Planting over eleven hundred trees over fourteen years has meant resilience for Bealtaine Cottage.

IMG_7610This continual onslaught of extreme weather is fast establishing itself as the new normal!

IMG_7611From the normally mild summers of Ireland and the UK, numerous locations in the Northern Hemisphere have witnessed their hottest weather ever recorded over the past two weeks!

This should be a wake-up call to plant…trees!

IMG_7612 Only three months ago the country ground to a halt with severe snow storms and massive fall of snow in 48 hours!

IMG_7613Now we are experiencing a heatwave and severe drought which we haven’t had since 1976!

IMG_7614There was a hurricane here in Ireland last year and a massive six hour thunderstorm that did incredible damage.

IMG_7615The Irish Meteorological service, Met Éireann says there will be ‘practically nothing’ in terms of rainfall for the next ten days!

IMG_7616And so it continues unabated!

IMG_7619There has been less than 20mm of rain since May 1st with twelve days of sweltering heat and temps approaching 32c (90F) with no end in sight.

IMG_7629This is the third major record breaking weather story in just nine months – from autumn hurricanes to winter snow storms and now a summer drought!

IMG_7632Have you noticed the effect of this heatwave and drought here at Bealtaine Cottage? Many of you are familiar with the Bealtaine Project motto:

“Plant like your life depends upon it, for it does!” ~ Bealtaine CottageIMG_7636There has been some leaf drop, but overall the land is in good condition and is surviving the extreme conditions well!

IMG_7639As I write this I am aware of extreme rainfall and flooding in Japan.

IMG_7642It appears that the entire world is experiencing extreme weather.

IMG_7643However, what is happening is a taste of what lies ahead, for whatever we do there are consequences.

IMG_7645Did we not all learn that simple rule as children?

IMG_7644If we fail to look after, respect and maintain our home, then it will fall down around us. IMG_7649The earth is our home.

IMG_7652We have treated Mother Earth with disdainful arrogance!

There is a video on this subject uploaded today over on the Bealtaine Cottage YouTube channel…subscribe for further notifications.

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A Cottage and Three Acres

Please email Colette if you would like a particular inscription in your book. From a desolate cottage set in 3 acres of monoculture sadness, to a vibrant, thriving food forest of life…the journey back to Eden over 13 years… Bealtaine Books and Maps are printed in Ireland and posted from Ireland to support the people of Ireland.


In Search of The Goddess Rising

This is the second book in the Goddess Permaculture series from Colette O’Neill at Bealtaine Cottage, Ireland. In this book I explore the ancient landscape, mythology, literature and life around Bealtaine Cottage… in search of the Great Goddess. The price of the book includes all postage and packing to wherever you live in the world! Bealtaine Books and Maps are printed in Ireland and posted from Ireland to support the people of Ireland.


Bealtaine Cottage Guide to the Deep Midwinter

A little Yuletide book filled with colour photographs, recipes, reflections, lore, poetry and mirth to guide you through the wonderful days ahead. Fifty pages of sheer delight from Bealtaine Cottage to you. The book is fully bound and can be posted direct as a gift. Price includes P&P worldwide. Bealtaine Books and Maps are printed in Ireland and posted from Ireland to support the people of Ireland.


Special Offer: Goddess Book and Midwinter Book

In Search of the Goddess Rising and The Bealtaine Cottage Guide to the Deep Midwinter…can be purchased together for for €36.00 which includes P&P Worldwide. Bealtaine Books and Maps are printed in Ireland and posted from Ireland to support the people of Ireland.


Magical Mythical Map of Bealtaine Cottage and Gardens

Beautiful map created by the artist David Gascoigne, especially for Bealtaine Cottage. The picture shows one side of the map…it is printed on both sides, see the photos on this page. The price includes all Postage and Packing to wherever you live in the world! Bealtaine Books and Maps are printed in Ireland and posted from Ireland to support the people of Ireland.



  1. Hello Collette, Jack, SammyBear & Beauty,

    Thankyou for your blogs, I look forward to seeing them. Your dedication to the land is truly uplifting & inspiring.

    I have not been to Ireland, nor to many other countries.

    I do however have another good reason to be interested in your blogs apart from the land you so lovingly tend. My maternal grandmother came from Omagh, County Tyrone & it warms me whenever you mention you were from Omagh. Just a simple message but nonetheless there you are.

    All the best to you & your ever growing family whom take many varied forms,

    Wendy Fitzpatrick

    Sent from Mail for Windows 10

  2. You mentioned in the video that your water supply to the cottage is almost non-existent. I was wondering what sort of contingency plan you have for the future, and how you are doing now.

  3. Hey Colette, thanks to your example, planting as if your life depends on it, our garden is bearing up quite well thank the Goddess. I just want to let you know that Jacob’s Ladder, Chamomile, Shasta Daisies, Ox-Eye Daisies, Feverfew and Euphorbia are all doing well – seeds purchased from and gifted by you. Many thanks

  4. Wonerful photography to accompany very interesting text and wise words.

    Sent from my Samsung Galaxy smartphone

  5. Collette, I am so glad to know that you and Bealtaine Cottage. Even here in the White Mountains of NH, we have been in a long dry heat wave. Our forest is fine, but there is always the danger of a forest fire when it is so dry; we must hope that people are being wise with their campfires, etc. We do need to keep our vegetable gardens watered of course. We are so glad that we put in a new and deeper well point last summer. It reaches into the large aquifer beneath us and we are blessed with plentiful beautiful clear water now. We are keeping our bird bath full for the birds as well.

Your comments are welcome!