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Reduce the Plastic Footprint – Ways to Reduce Plastic in Everyday Life

“ I can only do what one can do but what one can do I will do ” – a quote attributed to John Seymour.

It is in this spirit that we are hosting our next workshop on Saturday, 23 March, 10AM – 1PM.

Anne Marie Mahon (PhD) GMIT will be facilitating the workshop.

We know from scientific research that plastic is deemed a threat to our ecosystems and
human health. We can feel helpless with the volume of plastic packaging we have to dispose of each week. We may think it is fine as long as our plastic goes into the bin but
unfortunately this is not the case, so there is a necessity for each of us to strive to reduce
our everyday plastics consumption.

Indeed there is already some positive action being taken by individuals, businesses and community groups. Together we can do more.

It is encouraging that our local O’Meara’s Supervalu will be introducing their new policy on Plastic Reduction.

And so we balance out John Seymour’s quote with Margaret Mead’s
experience: “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”

We will also have alternative products on display and we will be sharing alternative techniques and practices.

Booking at 087 2845443 or

Chris Jordan’s ALBATROSS film trailer from chris jordan photographic arts on Vimeo.

Monastic Ireland – A Gift of the Nile

Alf Monaghan will be back with us for a follow-up talk on the 1st of December, 10am-2.30pm.

Alf’s illustrated talk looks at the history of early Irish Christianity from a different perspective – a Mediterranean perspective. It provides a tantalizing glimpse under the veil of history. It asks many questions and confounds some of the accepted theories about the history of early Christianity in Ireland. It traces links with ancient Egypt, connects Irish monasticism with the Desert Fathers and the early Irish Church with the Egyptian Coptic Church. Recent Irish discoveries such as the Faddan More Psalter – Egyptian papyrus found in an ancient book of psalms from a Tipperary bog – are clues pointing to a more substantial Eastern Mediterranean influence in early Irish Christianity, than has been acknowledged to date

Booking, before Thursday 29 November, at 087 2845443 or angairdin1’at’

Download the event flyer: MonasticIrelandPoster

A Sacred Island Before Christianity – Alf Monaghan

  • Saturday, November 3rd, 10am – 2.30pm,
  • €10 (includes light lunch)
  • To book, contact angairdin1’at’ or 087 284 5443   (Before 31 October).

The impression that Ireland was a remote, isolated place in antiquity is outdated. Latest evidence suggests it was part of an active trade network along Atlantic-Mediterranean seaways. During the Neolithic and Bronze ages, the sea was a corridor for trade, communication, ideas  and beliefs – easier, faster & more economical than overland routes.

In reality this made ancient Ireland ‘central & accessible’ – its west coast & islands part of a continuous maritime corridor, from the Mediterranean to Scandinavia. Seagoing Irish had intense cultural affinity and contact with other communities along this long seaboard. The result was shared maritime heritage, language, &religious beliefs.

Against this backdrop, Alf Monaghan traces the origin and spread of Pre-Christian eastern religious beliefs to Ireland, and their impact here. In this context too, the influence of Egyptian Christianity on the early Irish Church is easily understood.

Download flyer: Flyer – A Sacred Island – before Chtristianity (5 Sept. ’18) (1)

About Alf Monaghan

Alf, from Carrick-on-Shannon, has spent most of his life abroad.

He has worked as an Economic Adviser to governments and development agencies in Northern Europe, Central America, the Mediterranean, the Middle East, South & West Africa.

His years in Syria,Turkey, Lebanon, Cyprus, Jordan & Egypt, triggered a deeper interest in the origins of belief and religion.




Organic Gardening Course – An Gáirdín, Autumn 2018/Spring 2019

Choosing and Preparing Your Site for a Vegetable Garden in 2019

With Jim Cronin

Organic growing can produce awesome harvests from the home-scale up, and does so in tune with nature.

If you’re thinking about having a garden next year, now is the time to start your preparation. Jim is one of the country’s most well-known and respected organic growers, and we’re delighted to have him back at An Gáirdín for these sessions in October and during the spring of 2019.

The sessions will cover:

  • Soil
  • Fertility
  • Weed control
  • Reading your garden
  • … and much more

“Organic gardening is magical…. come along and see how to make it work in a practical way”

Booking: or 087 284 5443


Open Day at Jim Cronin’s Farm in Bridgetown

Last April, we were delighted to have Jim Cronin here at An Gáirdín for a very interesting and enjoyable talk and discussion about different aspects of organic growing.

This post is to let you know that on this coming bank holiday Monday, August 6th, Jim is hosting an open day at his farm in Bridgetown and all are welcome.

The day has two parts:

  • Field scale vegetables and workhorse demonstration from 12-1 at Gortmagee, Garraunboy. This will be signposted from Killaloe. (@52.80858090,-8.4718760)
  • The open home garden is from 2-5 at Ballyknavin, Bridgetown, Killaloe (V94 EH50). The venue is signposted from Bridgetown village.



Learn Permaculture in the Permagarden – May 14

On Monday the 14th, we are delighted to host a practical day-long course with Istvan to look at how permaculture principles and  practices can help in overcoming a wet garden.
With a landscaping practice based on the natural patterns of water flows, Istvan will focus our interest on structures such as swales and raised beds and show how transforming the very
structure of the land allows us to take advantage of the abundance of water to serve the
purpose of bringing more fertility to the garden.

A full description of the day here, and more about Permaculture Resource Ireland here.

Booking: Contact or call 087 2845443.

Istvan Markuly –  Lead Facilitator Local community developer who is working on establishing and growing the permaculture network in West Cork, Ireland and initiating Permaculture Waves across the country! He has taken PDC’s and Permaculture workshop internationally and continues to grow his knowledge. He’s co founder of Earth Environmental Education. He provides easy understanding through the principles of permaculture which might make people feel motivated, zestful and dynamic.



Food – Production, Consumption, Climate

On the morning of 28 April, we will be hosting a three-tiered look at our food choices in the context of climate change.

During the morning, we’ll take a look at organic production in Ireland and whether there is room for improvement in methods employed there, along with the many pros.

Alongside that, we’ll take a broader look at how agriculture is both a victim of climate change as well as a source of greenhouse gases and biodiversity loss globally.

Finally, we’ll hear the experiences of a chef working to produce food with locally sourced ingredients and enjoy a lunch prepared with local ingredients on the day.

More information shortly.

All welcome. To book, contact or call 087 2845443.


Climate Change Talk – Loughrea Library

If you missed our recent climate change talk given by John Cleary, you can catch it at Loughrea library on Thursday 22nd March at 7pm:

The presentation looks at the carbon cycle in relation to resource use, bringing examples of how society has shifted to using fossil fuel as its primary energy source over the past centuries.  This has led to the current build up of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. We look briefly at some of the scientific history of climate change, from John Tyndall to the Keeling curve, and take in carbon isotopes, climate models, and the question of attribution along the way. Climate change is considered in the context of the broader ecological crisis currently facing the planet, and the competing demands of economic growth and ecological limits. Finally, it takes a look at the idea of a carbon budget and assesses the state of play 2 years after the historic Paris Agreement.

Discussion and participation welcome.

Admission is free but places are limited. Starts 7 sharp.


Upcoming Workshops on Plastics and Climate Change

We have a couple of workshops in the coming weeks that we hope you may be able to join us for. Follow the links below to more information on each of the talks:

March 5: John Cleary on climate change – how a long history of resource use interacts with natural cycles to affect our climate.

March 10: Dr Anne Marie Mahon (GMIT) on the problem of plastics and microplastics in our environment and how we can take remedial action.



The art and science of pruning fruit trees can be daunting, but needn’t be so. Come along this Saturday (December 2) to learn the dos and don’ts to keep your trees in shape and productive.

Pruning in medieval times.

Led by Conor Griffin, the day will run from 10.30 to 3.30, and the cost is 25 euros.

Booking 0872845443 and



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