Posted in Bealtaine Cottage, Earth, Gaia, Life, Permaculture, Uncategorized

A Life in the Country ~ A Permaculture Landscape under a Full Moon

Full moon rises over Bealtaine Cottage. The night air is clear, so the moon lights up the land as in a fairy landscape.

Understanding Permaculture…

“The only basic and comprehensive answer to the colossal harm that our present industrial system is causing to the global environment – harm that could lead to the extermination of all life on earth – is to replace it with a sustainable system – geared largely to the non-polluting, life-enhancing products of the living world”
Robert A de J Hart ‘Forest Gardening’

“It is our collective responsibility to protect and nurture the global family, to support its weaker members and to preserve and tend to the environment in which we all live”
Dalai Lama

Have you ever gone for a walk in the light of the full moon?

 

“Is it all worth it? If we do our best to heal the Earth and make our place in her a sustainable one, is there a good chance that we will succeed?…to my mind that’s the wrong question. Even if we could answer it – and we can never know anything about the future for certain, it would beg the question How do I want to live my life? So my answer to the question..is that I want to be part of the solution rather than part of the problem”.
Patrick Whitefield ‘Earth Care Manual’

“It is time for all of us to make changes about how we live our lives and to follow a path of the heart. By following our intuition and inspiration we encourage our own acts of heartfelt genius and boldness. This makes us feel alive and vital, gives us a great purpose and harnesses parts of ourselves we may have neglected or didn’t even know we had. We no longer feel overwhelmed by the way the Earth’s resources are managed, but recognise that change is in our hands, yours and mine, the hands of extraordinary people who have made a leap of understanding and are determined to make a difference. We become part of the change by becoming part of the solution.”
Glennie Kindred ‘Earth Wisdom’

“Permaculture, a design system that reconciles human communities with the ecological imperatives of a living planet.”
Ben Haggard
Walking in the gardens it is possible to feel the strength of the full moon…it’s awesome!

“Permaculture is a design system for creating sustainable human environments. The word itself is a contraction not only of permanent and agriculture but also of permanent culture, as cultures cannot survive for long without a sustainable agricultural base and landuse ethic. On one level, permaculture deals with plants, animals, buildings, and infrastructures (water, energy, communications). However, permaculture is not about these elements themselves, but rather about the relationships we can create between them by the way we place them in the landscape.  ~ Bill Mollison

Under such a sky the air is chilled.

“Permaculture is also a world wide network and movement of individuals and groups working in both rich and poor countries on all continents. Largely unsupported by government or business, these people are contributing to a sustainable future by reorganizing their life and work around permaculture design principles. In this way they are creating small local changes but ones which are directly and indirectly influencing action in the wider environment, organic agriculture, appropriate technology, communities and other movements for a sustainable world. After 20 years Permaculture may rank as one of Australia’s most significant ‘intellectual exports’.”
~David Holmgren

“Adopting permaculture in your garden could be the first step towards limiting your personal consumption and planning your life to become more creative as time goes by”
Graham Bell, ‘The Permaculture Garden’

Posted in Cottage, Culture, Earth, Ecology, History, Ireland, Leitrim, Roscommon, Sligo, Smallholding

Abandoned Cottages in the West of Ireland

Wild Orchids are just some of the Wild Flowers at Bealtaine Smallholding today.

Walking the land it is amazing to see so many and such variety of Nature’s Bounty.

The leaves of an old Fern are just starting to unfurl.

Some of these Ferns growing along the bank at the back of the cottage are huge, denoting their age…10years and more!

The ruins of an old, old cottage on the hill behind this smallholding.

There are a few of these ancient remnants of a once much larger community of souls scattered on the hill of Ballyfermoyle.

Many of the lives born in these small cottages grew up and left Ireland.

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Many emigrated to countries like Australia and the U.S.A.

The remnants of their lives are often dug up here at Bealtaine and sites all over the west of Ireland.

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It might be that someone reading this blog is a descendant of a Ballyfermoyle emigrant.

There is a sadness around these ruins and many like them scattered the length and breadth of this land…encapsulated in the small clumps of daffodils which re-appear each Spring, reminiscent of the loving hands that planted them deep in the soil around their modest home.

www.bealtainecottage.com

These little flowers would have been the nearest the dweller would have got to gardening…their lives taken up with the burden of work to eke out a modest living.

Ash trees and Ivy grow up the inside of the gable wall of an old, stone cottage.

Large families of up to twenty children lived in tiny two bedroom cottages.

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A woman I once interviewed had a family of fifteen children, born over the course of sixteen consecutive years…that is almost one child every year!

www.bealtainecottage.com

It is most likely, if your name is of Irish origin, that a home like the one above would have housed your ancestors…they would have, at least, looked out upon the great natural beauty that would have surrounded them and mourned this loss in their adopted country…