Early Days

A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step

Today I received the title deeds to the parcel of land in the hills of south Dublin known as Glencullen Allotments. Measuring over 4 acres with allotments and supporting infrastructure established since 2009 (private water well, plumbing, electricity, toilet facilities, boundary and allotment fencing), the basic essentials are in place to further develop the green field site in an environmentally-friendly manner in accordance with the local area plan.

Green and environment are the keywords here and development comes in many shapes and sizes. My approach to developing the site is to allow nature be the lead architect on the regeneration project. My responsibility as owner is to be the custodian of the land, a steward to the soil beneath my feet.

Admittedly, as I embark on this eco venture, I am the one who is green. It is as daunting as it is empowering. I am the first to say that I am naive to native permaculture, I’ve scant knowledge of farm management and I lack an education in rural livelihood. I have long had an active interest in gardening, in GIY and have the makings of green fingers, but estate management is a very different proposition.

This past month has been challenging as everything is so new to me; working with heavy farm machinery, learning about how utilities work, reading up on best practice land conservation. But that’s the whole point of this investment, an investment in myself, in learning old ways anew, in taking my time and growing with the community around me. Ultimately my ambition is reconnect with raw life, the things I’ve only read about in books. All well and good in theory; A long road, a life-time, in practice. That’s fills me with foreboding just as it does elation. I’ve so much to learn, it can feel overwhelming. Fear of the unknown is natural and I am stepping out of my comfort zone in to the natural habitat. I have no doubt however, and that’s important, doubt can paralyse. I am convinced that connecting back to basics is the right course for me and it’s going to be a journey of a lifetime well worth travelling.

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