Posted in Animals, Autumn, Bealtaine Cottage, Country Living, cows, Garden, Inspiration, Ireland, Life, Permaculture, Smallholding, Thoughts, Uncategorized

An Autumn Afternoon in an Irish Cottage Garden

Colours of the season, dogwoods ablaze and Loosestrife turned to straw.

Birch and Beech turn earthy tones.

Near the lake, the cows move slowly in the afternoon heat, seeking shady spots to stand and stare.

Old driftwood from the ocean salutes the cottage.

The horses come to look over the fence, waiting for a treat they are sure to get!

A last flush of yellow on the Hypericum bush holds the moisture from the October air.

The Beech trees will cling onto their leaves for most of the winter, even though the life within has passed.

And little Newts seek a place to over-winter, resting on the back door mat as they make their path towards hibernation.

Posted in Autumn, Bealtaine Cottage, celebrations, Celtic Mythology, Country Living, Food, Gardens, Life, Lifestyle, Nature, Permaculture, Uncategorized

Ireland…Ridden with Debt and Blessed with Land

We are a country ridden with debt and blessed with land…and water…and a temperate climate.

Ireland is capable of producing a lot of food, not just meat and dairy, but fruit and vegetables of all kinds.

We could have a great wool industry!

We were famous for our Crystal from Waterford!

Irish people are hard-working and dedicated.

What is needed is courage, integrity and honesty in our political leaders.

We need political leaders with vision and confidence…

If only we had leadership…

I have cut back many of the Dogwoods in the upper gardens and have been busily replanting some of the better cuttings.

The entrance to the Fairy Dell is enveloped in the striking reds of Dogwoods.

These easy to grow [stick a wand in the earth] shrubs are incredibly valuable to me…the stems remain a vivid red all winter, I use them in Willow wreaths for vibrant colour and vase  arrangements in the cottage to brighten a dull day.

The birds will eat the juicy ripe berries and the bees will enjoy the delicate spring flowers on the old stems.

Another misty morning.

Cobwebs everywhere shining with tiny drops of dew.

I walked through the Fairy Dell to the sound of the Blackbird rustling about among the fallen leaves, searching for breakfast!

It wasn’t just the mountains that had disappeared, this morning, into the mist, but most of the land as well.

My garden had vanished this morning!

It’s strange because the air was so still and the bird calls seemed to echo in the mist.

I hope it’s like this at Samhain…so many preparations are under way, especially gathering in the apples and preparing them for the freezer.

Despite the warm and sunny days,  nights are cold  and lots of little creatures are seeking hibernation spots…

I have to keep the windows closed at night for fear of having to share this cottage with too many visitors!

Posted in Bealtaine Cottage, Country Living, Ecology, Garden, Permaculture, Uncategorized, Wildlife

Friday Pics from Bealtaine Cottage

Mossy Angel in the Bog Garden today.

Dogwoods in the Bog Garden near the lower pond.

Amazing heaps of frog spawn in the upper pond…it’s that big black area!

Japanese Quince in the Bog Garden is flowering today…

Dogwoods come back to life…

The Spring Well in the Fairy Dell.

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Posted in Autumn, Cottage, Earth, Ecology, Garden, Inspiration, Life, Permaculture, Spirituality, Thoughts, Uncategorized

A Life in the Country ~ The Progress of Autumn through a Permaculture Landscape…

I prefer winter and fall, when you feel the bone structure of the landscape – the loneliness of it, the dead feeling of winter. Something waits beneath it, the whole story doesn’t show.

– Andrew Wyeth

Out walking Jack in the early morning sunshine and spying hundreds of silvery webs on the hedgerows, mostly with a lone spider in the centre of each.

The Sedums and Rudbeckias are in full bloom as the colours of the leaves golden up…this is one of the best times of the year to go walking.

We all have our own life to pursue, our own kind of dream to be weaving. And we all have some power to make wishes come true, as long as we keep believing.– Louisa May Alcott

Hundreds of webs, sparkling with raindrops in the early morning sun at Bealtaine Cottage…

Whether one sees the world as God’s creation or as a secular mystery that science is on the way to figuring out, there is no denying the beauty and majesty of everything from mountain ranges, deserts, and rain forests to the exquisite details in the design of an ordinary mosquito. [Spirituality for the Skeptic]

– Robert C. Solomon

The stillness of the Lower Pond today as the frenetic flooding of the past two days subside.

Copper Beech and Dogwoods line a path in the Bog Garden near the Lower Pond this morning. Beech trees colour up wonderfully in Autumn.

Leaves along the grassy verge on the laneway up through the land of Bealtaine Smallholding…

Posted in Beltane, Climate, Ecology, Gaia, Garden, Gardening, Permaculture, PermaGoddess, Uncategorized, Wildlife

Easter Sunday Wildflowers and Butterflies ~ Permaculture in Ireland at Bealtaine Cottage

The delicate an exquisite flowers on the Dogwoods are beautiful close-up. For colour all winter, flowers in summer and berries during the autumn, dogwoods are hard to beat.Wildflowers…the most delicate and delicious blooms at Bealtaine Cottage…Elderflower Cordial, mmm!The time of the butteflies is very near. Last summer seen a huge upturn in the butterfly population as the garden matured. This summer should be good for butterflies too, although some of the buddleia was killed off in the prolonged frost of last winter. Seed heads from last summer. All so-called weeds are in fact valuable herbs, some of which we have not yet found a use for. It’s amazing just how much knowledge we have lost over the post-industrial time, a mere 150 years!