Here’s the video…enjoy!
Life is stirring.
Light shines higher in the morning sky.
Thickening buds cast a haze over the land.
“But there were certain early days in Casterbridge- days of firmamental exhaustion which followed angry south-westerly tempests-when, if the sun shone, the air was like velvet.”
― Thomas Hardy
Colours emerge and birds sing out a joyous, higher note.
We are officially in the season of Spring in the West of Ireland and the new energy is tangible, from rising in the morning to the growing lateness of dusk.
The temperature seems rather unstable, as you can see evidence of in the photograph above.
The morning began very cold and in the space of minutes, the temperature had climbed by 18 F., causing the mirror on the veranda to steam up!
I recorded this as most of the only real information about climate and weather appears to be anecdotal evidence from social media!
My favourite aspect of Spring is the way the light changes.
If one simply sat in this cottage and never ventured outdoors it would be possible to map the seasons in light play.
I expect birds, animals and even insects are similarly informed.
Living in the glare of artificial light can be dulling to our senses!
“She walks in the loveliness she made,
Between the apple-blossom and the water–
She walks among the patterned pied brocade,
Each flower her son, and every tree her daughter.”
― Vita Sackville-West,
Elsewhere in the woodland gardens at Bealtaine, frogs have emerged from hibernation and busied themselves, as only frogs can in cold ponds!
Frogs in Bealtaine pond have the luxury of a shallow, sheltered, ancillary pond, hand dug by myself, just off the main one.
This water heats faster and earlier, ensuring maximum attention to the detail of frog mating and spawning…a sort of nursery pond!
Anyway, it works a treat and has done for the past eleven years.
As a consequence, the amphibian life force has healthily expanded!
“Woods were ringed with a colour so soft, so subtle that it could scarcely be said to be a colour at all. It was more the idea of a colour – as if the trees were dreaming green dreams or thinking green thoughts.”
― Susanna Clarke,
“It is spring again. The earth is like a child that knows poems by heart.”
― Rainer Maria Rilke
Diversity of planting not only has created resilience, but bestowed all year round colour to Bealtaine Cottage…so appreciated as Spring emerges…for with this rising of the sap, comes a much defined colour change!
“She turned to the sunlight
And shook her yellow head,
And whispered to her neighbor:
“Winter is dead.”
― A.A. Milne,
Catkins have appeared on the Willow…and there’s many different varieties in the Woodland. Pond and even Orchard gardens. Essential food for the bees emerging from a hungry winter hibernation.
“Is the spring coming?” he said. “What is it like?”…
“It is the sun shining on the rain and the rain falling on the sunshine…”
― Frances Hodgson Burnett,
This Quince grows in the Bog Garden and has begun to flower!
“In the spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt.”
― Margaret Atwood
Where would Spring be without the exquisite little Primroses?
Seen here in the Fairy Wood at Bealtaine, surrounded by Spurge!
“Spring is the time of plans and projects.”
― Leo Tolstoy,
The Fairy Wood awakens!
You can place an order for seeds harvested here at Bealtaine cottage, from the plants seen growing here…all strong and vigorous. Click on the link below that will take you to the selection available:
Not in any particular order…pictures of the year that was…
Happy New Year to you all XXX and Blessings from Bealtaine.
Bealtaine Cottage is free and has over 850 blogs, as well as over 3,500 photographs.
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This morning the sun shone on a new year and all the possibilities therein…
The first day. A clean slate. A chance, an opportunity…all things good!
Cupboards to be cleared out. Fresh paint to be applied and each day, the sun that little bit higher in the sky.
Now is the time to dig and plant…trees, borders and divide plants as a way of providing the borders with even more food for the bees and butterflies.
Don’t forget to plant garlic…lots and lots as it dries and keeps wonderfully well!
The water levels in the ground and the aquifers are unseasonally high. The land is seeped in water. Both ponds and the stream gush on overload.
As I write this, the sun has disappeared behind rain clouds as more water descends from the January sky.
Storms are sweeping in from the west, as the silver grey of the Ash trees are illuminated against the storm skies.
Sun streams through the trees.
There is a tangible heat from the sun this morning.
Ivy and branches hang low…the birds sing out…it really is a lovely morning and a good start to the year!
Climate change is quite evidential here at Bealtaine Cottage in the west of Ireland!
Walking through the gardens this morning I am shocked to find many flowers still in bloom.
Borage in flower this morning, the first day of December 2011. This herb is growing in a fairly exposed spot near the gate to Bealtaine.
The Borage is growing alongside a miniature Rudbeckia, grown from seed this year and in flower from early autumn.
This is indicative of just how mild the weather has been!
I used home made compost to plant out the Rudbeckia and the Borage has come up through it!
This time last year the ground was frozen solid. Today it is more like early autumn than December!
Fuschia in flower down near the Bog Garden…this is not the semi-native one that is hardy, so the flowers this morning are quite a shock to see!
Even the spring water in the ponds is warm…
First of all a BIG TA VERY MUCH for all who have visited my blog over the past year. I began in the middle of August 2010 and in little over a year, 70,000 of you have made the journey to Bealtaine Cottage at Ballyfermoyle, here in the beautiful West of Ireland…well, actually, a very great many of you have visited many times over and subscribed to the blog. Hopefully in the next year the blog will expand even more in some exciting ways…ssshhh, it’s still a secret!
Fuschia and Fedges grow side by side. Both are grown from slips or cuttings. It will soon be time to harvest the willow and plant more cuttings, which is really the story of these gardens. Planting has been ongoing now for seven years, since day one of Bealtaine…
The Wisdom of the Hopi Indians…something to share with you, just click on the link…http://youtu.be/zNlNUJcEcoY
Have a great weekend! Plant a tree for the Mother…Gaia… x
Nasturtiums in bloom this morning. These are the trailing variety and will grow well in poor soil. Both the leaves and the flowers are edible and add a spicy taste to a salad. These are growing from a pot on the veranda.
Swathes of colour dot the driveway to the cottage as the Valerian, Dog Daisy and Dog Rose all come into bloom.
The Dog Rose, Rosa Canina, will go on to produce rosehips that are packed with vitamin C and are good for making syrup that is traditionally fed to babies and toddlers.