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. This continual onslaught of extreme weather is fast establishing itself as the new normal! From 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!  Only three months ago the country ground to a halt with severe snow storms and massive fall of snow in 48 hours! Now we are experiencing…

The Pivotal Point

The west of Ireland has been drying out over recent weeks, as the drought continues to make it’s presence felt in streams, rivers and, most importantly for Bealtaine Cottage, Spring Wells…mine in particular! Those attending yesterday’s workshop noted the now empty rain barrels! There is rain promised for Friday the 12th of May…the day when a visitor from America flies in to take up a week long course at Bealtaine Cottage…so rain will be greatly appreciated on this occasion in order to facilitate shower facilities in the cottage! On the plus side, there’s a new wooden veranda to enjoy sitting…

A Lifeboat For Humanity

It was James Lovelock who first suggested that there would be a very few countries which would escape the worst vagaries of the oncoming Climate Change… Much of our media remains silent about the problem and there hangs an eerie silence in the air around centres of political machinations. Our extractive mentality and the demand for higher profits combine to destroy our very own habitat..this is the truth of what’s happening worldwide…we cannot escape our acquisitive nature! We appear to be caught in a vicious circle of greed versus need…and we know which one of those two is winning!  This…

Giordano Bruno

I have been reading much of late…in particular, two books by James Lovelock, setting out the case for Gaia and the ensuing extreme weather generated by a change in our climate, among other things, some would argue!  This is not a blog about Climate Change or, even, extreme weather…enduring it is quite enough! This is about an extraordinary human being, who, 400 years before James Lovelock, set out the case for our Earth being alive…as I know her to be today! For this and other beliefs, Giordano was burned at the stake in the year 1600. Giordano Bruno, born Filippo Bruno, was…

End of Empire and Climate Chaos

The greatest concern of our times is happening on a daily basis and affecting every one of us. Weather volatility is real and happening and the Ostriches in power appear impotent against the great forces of Nature. The gabbling media assault our senses with celebrity highs and lows, sport and highly edited titbits of what is happening internationally…all the while keeping away from any real conversation about the chaos that is the weather all around us and those dreaded words: Climate Change. However it is not Climate Change any more…the media have completely missed out on that conversation! It has…

Love in a (not so) Cold Climate

With the back door wide open and the birds singing out a chorus more resonant of Spring than Winter, welcome to Sunday morning at Bealtaine Cottage in the west of Ireland! Despite the mild Winter, snow has fallen and added a seasonal touch to the landscape…in fact it remains on the mountains to the north of the cottage and here and there on banks and ditches. I’ve been very busy in the gardens since the end of December, pruning hard, cutting back, washing the tunnel, cleaning pots and generally trying to stay ahead of the work that will suddenly seem…