Bealtaine Project: Colette O'Neill's Irish Permaculture Journey


Bealtaine Cottage Before Colette O'Neill began her permaculture project.

 Bealtaine Cottage before

Single, in her late 40s and living in London, Colette O’Neill spent several years plotting a return to her native Ireland. Holiday weekends were spent searching for the perfect cottage and a small bit of land to live out the permaculture life of her dreams. While the land and cottage in the West of Ireland she settled on were not quite the dreamy vision she had planned, something about the “north-facing, wet, rush-infested land” and the old cottage without plumbing, a view of the sky through the kitchen ceiling and an urgent need for new wiring spoke to her. Now in her mid 60s with a blog and YouTube channel filled with 11 years of content from that journey, one can see the vision come to life. Except for a few building projects and the original earth moving at the start of the project, Colette is the one who has been planting mostly from seeds and cuttings, chopping and dropping in permaculture style to create woodland paths and the caretaker of this magical woodland sanctuary.

Poly tunnel

Bealtaine Cottage Lane after 13 years of permaculture. 

Bealtaine Cottage Lane after 13 years of permaculture. 

12/15/2020 9:17:03 PM

As others have mentioned, I was familiar with Colette's Bealtaine project through her YouTube channel. She's a truly remarkable woman. Not only and gardener and environmentalist, but a poet, photographer, filmmaker, knitter, writer and artist. Thanks so much for highlighting the work of a woman whose ideas quite literally could save the planet!

Maureen B
12/15/2020 5:26:54 PM

What a marvelous story. I've been following Colette's YouTube videos for a few years now< I was completely inspired by her book A Cottage and Three Acres and have since converted my 1/4 acre plot into a wildlife sanctuary. Inspiring indeed!

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