Posted in Angels, Bealtaine Cottage, Buddha, Cottage, Garden, Ireland, Lifestyle, Permaculture, Summer, Trees, Uncategorized

May Morning in Ireland

Porch door at Bealtaine Cottage

A May morning at Bealtaine Cottage.

Looking through the front door, the sky is grey, but the trees are all greening up!

Back door at Bealtaine Cottage

The roses on the veranda are ready to burst into bloom quite soon!

Arabica floods the stone walls of the Angel planter and Poppies are still bulbous eggs waiting to open near the Buddleia.

Colour is just waiting to spring forth!

Pink tulips at Bealtaine Cottage

These are the Tulips this morning at the back of the cottage under one of the Beech trees.

The early morning rain sits atop the still closed petals.

Laneway at Bealtaine Cottage

The drive-way up to the cottage is filling out with greens, reds and whites as the trees take on their new mantles of summer cover.

Parsley growing at Bealtaine Cottage beside old iron kettle

Parsley and peas growing in one of the raised Potager beds at the back of the cottage this morning.

You can see the shreddings and seaweed!

Metal table and chairs at Bealtaine Cottage

I recently moved the garden table and chairs to this sheltered little spot near one of the Potager raised beds…near enough to the back door to nip out with my tea!

Honesty under the arch at Bealtaine Cottage

Lots of Honesty, (Lunaria), in bloom this morning under the shelter of the Laurel arch.

Crocosmia, Columbine and Geranium are growing up alongside.

flowers in a pot at Bealtaine Cottage

These little rockery flowers have blossomed in this earth pot for years now.

They sit atop an old iron fireplace filled with shamrock and watched over by Buddha.

Posted in Bealtaine Cottage, Ecology, Folklore, Ireland, Permaculture, Smallholding, Trees

Permaculture Cottage ~ Many Magical Trees

The Life Force of Trees

It was a common belief, long ago, that many conditions could be cured by bringing the patient into contact with the powerful life force or MANA represented by trees…

Nearly 800 trees have been planted here at Bealtaine and there is something so awesome about trees that makes me want to get more land and keep on planting. 

Today has seen the transplanting of another 20 or so Birch trees, seedlings rescued from the road verge before the tractors mow the grass.

More Buddleias for FREE!

Managed to pull up 3 tiny Buddleias from the gravel around the cottage…gravel makes an ideal seeding ground for many plants and trees.

These too have been potted on and will make fine specimens for planting out next year.

Birch Trees

This is a little Birch sapling planted only a few weeks ago and already grown over a foot in height and spread.

Grass cuttings have been spread around the base to deter weeds and provide food for the fast growing tree.

Apple Trees and Verbascum

Apple trees under-planted with Blackcurrants and perennial flowers…here is the Verbascum in bloom with Geranium  and Calendula amongst others.

Many Magical Trees…

Willow, Birch, Copper Beech, Twisted Willow, Oak and Pine, all planted in very close proximity to one another…this is the permaculture way and very quickly excludes weeds and provides an excellent source of coppiced wood for the stove.

Ash trees were traditionally used in Folk Medicine against poison and evil. Lightning runs to the Ash…’Avoid the Ash, it courts the flash!’

Long ago, in many parts of the Highlands of Scotland, on the birth of a child, the midwife would take a green stick from the Ash tree and hold it in the fire. As the heat worked on one end of the stick, the sap would ooze from the other. This was administered to the newborn baby as the first liquid to pass its lips!

I write about, film and photograph Mother Earth, for Mother Earth, opening little portals of healing energy all over the world.

Blessings and thanks for your support.

Posted in Abundance, Bloom, Cottage, Country Living, Earth, Garden, Ireland, Leitrim, Permaculture, Poetry, Roscommon, Sligo, Smallholding, Summer, Thoughts, Uncategorized

Midsummer at Bealtaine Cottage.

Today is midsummer. The day is grey with low cloud and soft rain…a steady drizzle.

Summer has magically disappeared, just like in the magicians’ trick. Yesterday was a strange day! The clouds appeared to stand still all day long…

The soft rain has settled in drops on the red Perlagonium…Geranium to you and me! Red geraniums are linked in the minds eye with the Irish cottage. The simple, stark, vivid red stands out against the whitewash of the cottage walls. So much of Irish tradition has become subsumed into the vulgarity that was the so-called Celtic Tiger. One would be heard-pressed to find a traditional cottage that is lived in and cared for…most have been allowed to fall back into the ground.

Sweet William

This is the 5th year of bloom for this lovely white flower, planted into tyres around the veranda rose, it never fails to make a show of itself!

Strawberries in Hanging Baskets…
continue to fruit and ripen and be gorged upon!

The Sun Lounger has been temporarily abandoned…waiting for the sun!

Nasturtiums, emblematic of summer…

Delightful is the season’s splendour,

winter’s rough wind has gone;

bright is every fertile wood,

a joyful peace is summer.

-“Maytime,” Irish, 9th Century.

Posted in Climate, Country Living, Food, Garden, Inspiration, Ireland, Organic Garden, Permaculture, Summer, Uncategorized, Wild Flowers

Hide and Seek…Mixed-Up Seasons. Bealtaine Blog

Summer is playing hide and seek…

Cold in June?

Yes! Bloody cold enough for the woolies to be brought out from hibernation under the bed! The west of Ireland is cold and windy and the stove is lit and I have a shawl around my shoulders as I type! Truly!

But…
despite the weather the strawberries continue to give out the lushest of fruit, to be picked at and gorged upon each time I pass through the veranda.
I deliberately don’t buy imported fruit or stuff out of season as it makes summer all the more welcome!

And…despite
the cold weather, the Valerian makes its joyous display of pink, again, from nothing more than limestone gravel!

Geranium
Yes…this is the true Geranium! The one you are probably thinking of is actually Perlagonium. Anyway, it is rather beautiful as well as being a perennial!