Bealtaine Cottage

Bealtaine Cottage


“This is about one woman deciding to do something very dramatic and revolutionary in Ireland…taking three acres of wet, rushy, north-facing land and planting trees like her life depended on it…it does! Bealtaine Cottage smallholding is in the west of Ireland. In May 2004, this was a derelict cottage on a north facing slope of three acres of wet, rushy land. My aim, living alone and without any workforce or helpers, was to create a self-sustaining smallholding designed and constructed on Permaculture Principles. This has included planting over 1,000 deciduous trees including two large orchards, as well as many perennials and bushes.

Bealtaine Cottage has evolved into an Ark for Nature, with continuous planting and expanding biodiversity. Transforming the cottage interior has meant, wherever possible, the use of re-cycled materials. There is the recent installation of a compost toilet, put in place to ensure waste products are managed on site. The land has transformed from monoculture to Eden. There is a continual, substantial food surplus and this is channelled into the making of wines, jams, pickles, chutney, dried foods and plants.”

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