For the past few evenings I have lit the stove in the Lodge and turned down the sofa bed to make a cosy sleeping area that is easy and cheap to heat!
The little wood-burning stove that seems to emanate warmth from one or two small logs, is economic and easy to maintain, making this a snug and cosy place to overwinter.
The layers of insulation packed into the walls of this little wooden cabin, makes for excellent heat and maximum comfort!
The nights are drawing in fast now and the ice, frost and mist has been a nightly feature for about a week.
Autumn appears to continue during the day and Winter holds sway from darkness onward.
This morning was particularly beautiful, with swirls of icy mist hanging over the mountains and the air still and warming around the cottage.
The berries on the Pyracantha are turning deep in colour, as the Blackbird and Thrush both eye them up!
The Larch tree betond the Lodge is getting ready to shed its needles and the Purple Beech in the foreground hangs onto her leaves well into the middle of Spring!
Autumn is colourful and delightful and definitely my favourite season!
Parsley grows through the winter in this old, bottom-less bread-bin, tucked into the raised stone bed…a good source of Iron and Vitamin C.
Tiny Lichens are beginning to grow on this Birch tree…I love the delicate colours of the Lichens!
Bamboo and Beech compliment each other on the driveway…both are a source of energy and usefulness at Bealtaine. Bamboo lends itself well to many projects and makes fantastic tapers for using in the cottage, between the fire and candles!
Bamboo is also a wonderful medium to use when making wreathes, as it is very pliable when first cut and will bend into a circular shape with ease.
It can then be wrapped around with other plants and wood.
Beech, seen here with Forsythia, grows into fairy tree shapes, all twisted and gnarled, reminiscent of the Arthur Rackham Fairy story illustrations…these are indeed beautiful trees!
Red Dogwood comes into its own at the entrance to the Fairy Wood.
Do I believe in Fairies?
Indeed I do…don’t you?
Can you believe these cheeky little Perlagoniums, refusing to give up and go to sleep?
Tomorrow I shall lift them from their big pot and put them to bed for the winter!
It is the way of life here at Bealtaine Cottage and has been for over eight years now.
Permaculture is about making the most of our resources.
Regardless of where one lives, resources are all around us.
From an old but usable sewing machine to a stove that burns on wood and bakes a cake and heats the radiators and gives lots of hot water and boils the kettle… we are surrounded with abundance if we did but care to look!
The more we plant, the more resources we have.
The more resources we have, the more we can share.
Permaculture helps us to recognize ways of making the most of our resources, like simply insulating all the windows on the north side of my cottage last winter, helped me to make the most of my energy resource.
The simplicity of permaculture is such, that minimizing waste and maximizing potential appear to be one and the same, as one works to compliment the other.
Permaculture is about living in an ecologically sound way, embracing Nature and being able to integrate as much or as little style into that framework as one desires.
We engage in a fully conscious way with the life we attempt to build, ensuring that productivity and care for the environment are together, at the forefront of all planning and living.
In choosing to live this way, we can boast that we leave Mother Earth in a healthier and stronger position than when we first came to live with her!
Is there any other way of living that can say that?