Posted in climate change, Ireland, Permaculture, population, weather

Severe Weather and Climate Change

An incredible storm has raged all day long and continues into this dark, cold night.

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The wind has howled around the cottage, shaking the trees so fiercely that the ground has trembled!

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Thunder and lightning, hailstones rattling the windows and snow…this is the worst storm I have witnessed in over ten years at Bealtaine Cottage!

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The scary aspect of this biting cold, storm-ridden, night is that only two nights ago, it was positively warm; in fact the dramatic rise in temperature woke me up before dawn.

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As the weather becomes more and more wild and extreme, so everyday life is affected.

Even as I write this blog and upload photographs, the power has cut out twice, leaving me to start over…though some of the writing is automatically saved.

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It is past 9pm here in the cottage and the storm has not let up all day.

Still, I have made the most of the time, moving the beginnings of my Blackcurrant wine into demijohns, where it will bubble and work away in the coming months.

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The back of the cottage is a little more sheltered…indeed this storm is raging from the north of the country.

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Temperatures have plummet by 10 degrees over the past 48 hours.

Despite our best efforts to ignore it, climate change  is fast turning into the crisis of our present time…and looks likely to be a problem of growing enormity.

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Mother Earth has endured over two hundred years of industrial impacts, as well as an ever-intensifying human population, all demanding energy, food and an ever-increasing standard of living.

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On the day my mother was born, there were just over one billion people living on Planet Earth. Bealtaine Cottage homespun wool

On the day she died, this had increased almost sevenfold, to over seven billion!

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As the natural world is plundered, many species are in sharp decline.

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The sustainability crisis is second only to climate change, as the greatest threat of our times.

new compost heap bordered with willow at Bealtaine Cottage

I have kept diaries over the past ten years and have noted rare, extreme weather events become the norm!

This is not going away.

We have to face into this problem and start developing solutions.

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I write to encourage, help and inspire mindfulness for our beautiful world and have photographed and written over 870 blogs on the Bealtaine Cottage site, as well as over 110 videos on YouTube…all free from advertising!

You are very welcome and appreciated by leaving a comment, liking, sharing, or even leaving a small donation. Blessings X

Blessings
Posted in Food, Garden, Growing Food, Herbs, Organic Garden, Roscommon, Sligo, Uncategorized

Permaculture Notes from Bealtaine Cottage, Ireland

Feverfew (Tanacetum parthenium ), a member of the sunflower family, has been used for centuries in European folk medicine.

This sweet smelling flower is commonly associated as a remedy for headaches, arthritis, and fevers.

The name Feverfew is derived from the Latin word for fever…febrifugia, meaning, fever reducer!

It grows really easily from seed, self-seeding all over the gravel here at Bealtaine Cottage.

This is growing in a pot near the back door of the house, on the southern side.

These are rambling roses, climbing and pushing their way across a willow arch I made to help support them last year.

Roses are best known as ornamental plants grown for their flowers in the garden.

There are several different varieties here, though I don’t really know the names, as I have grown them from slips, mostly purloined from other gardens!

Roses are  used for commercial perfumery and commercial cut flower crops.

Some are used as landscape plants and for hedging.

Although Roses have minor medicinal uses, the fruits, or Rose-hips tell a different story altogether, most famous for the syrup made from them and fed to babies!

This is a little apple tree bought by my mother and planted into a quiet little spot on the land behind the cottage.

The apple is from the species, Malus domestica, in the rose family (Rosaceae).

It is one of the most widely cultivated tree fruits.

The tree originated in Western Asia, where its wild ancestor, the Alma, is still found today.

There are more than 7,500 known cultivars of apples.

Cultivars vary in their yield and the ultimate size of the tree, even when grown on the same rootstock.

This particular cultivar is a miniature apple tree.

At least 55 million tonnes of apples are grown worldwide, annually. China produces about 35% of this total.

The United States is the second-leading producer, with more than 7.5% of world production.

Iran is third, followed by Turkey, Russia, Italy and India.

Plants in pots and tubs at the back of the cottage today.

I noticed the birds coming down to feed on the flowers of the pansies.

The red and pink plant at the front is the little plant, Herb Robert.

Another rose growing here at Bealtaine…

Posted in Cottage, Country Living, Current Affairs, Dublin, Family, History, Inspiration, Ireland, Leitrim, Personal, photography, Politics, Thoughts, Uncategorized

Disappearing Ireland…Pictures from the Edge…

Generations of people have lived in the west of Ireland, generations have left…and those who remain are fast fading into a sparse population…

This is the story of one abandoned dwelling in the North West of Ireland. Government policy appears to militate against people living here…

Nature begins to consume the little stone barn…

This would have been a pretty little cottage once upon a time.

The roof would have been thatched, flowers planted around the door…

Warm fires would once have welcomed the visitor to this home…now only the eerie silence befalls the traveller…

How many feet once trod a path to bed along this staircase?

Ireland needs people living in the west.

Our government needs to introduce policies to ensure that, or one day many of the present day homes will look like this!

If you would like to support the work of the Bealtaine Cottage Permaculture website, Youtube (ad-free) videos and Open Gardens project, please feel free to…

or visit the Etsy shop and purchase a hand-made or vintage product.

 

Posted in Bealtaine Cottage, Cottage, Country Living, Culture, Current Affairs, Earth, Eco-Living, Ecology, Food, Frugal Living, Gaia, Garden, Gardening, Growing Food, Inspiration, Ireland, Leitrim, News, Organic Garden, Permaculture, Permaculture Ireland, Politics, Roscommon, Sligo, Smallholding, Sustainable Living, Uncategorized, Wine

No Money, just Abundance! Permaculture @ Bealtaine Smallholding, Ireland

Through a glass darkly…April Fool in the garden, reflection from a mirror.

Today is the first of April and the radio is talking about economic growth, again, and will continue to do ad infinatum…the only growth worth talking about is what happens here, on earth, on terra firma and there is so much growth it can be difficult keeeping up with it. The government’s economic growth for Ireland is only to pay back ginormous debts to Europe! Growth here, at Bealtaine is about food, fuel, wildlife, love and happiness…permaculture paradise.

No money…but, no poverty…I look around me at abundance, on this, the first day of April.

Flower buds on the redcurrant promises an abundance of fruit, which in turn promises an abundance of wine and puddings and jam and jelly and…no money, but no poverty!

Fruit trees and bushes, interspersed in hedges promise abundance, fruit for chutney, freezing, fruit butter, pies, cordials…no money, but no poverty…abundance!

No need to buy peanuts for the birds at Bealtaine…no money for peanuts, but, abundance of food to sustain a wide and varied bird population. Spindle in the foreground…