We, Bridget and Andy, live in the Arigna valley, about two miles from Arigna village. We have three acres of land which we work in an earth-friendly and sustainable way. Most of our vegetables are grown in the two polytunnels and some outside beds. We have a donkey, Daphne, who does a great job making manure for the garden. We also make our own compost and liquid feeds for the crops. Three goats also live here, Smokie, Enid and her daughter Bella, and provide our milk. Our other animals are two dogs, Lettie and Alice. Andy did a beekeeping course in 2009 and we now have two beehives.

Lots of fruit trees have been planted in recent years. Apples, Plums, Pear and Cherry will hopefully begin to bear fruit in the near future. Blackcurrants, a Victoria Plum tree, a Peach tree in the polytunnel, Jostaberries and a Grapevine are already producing good crops. What is not eaten fresh is frozen and used throughout the year to make jams and chutneys. These are sold locally and at any occasional local markets. We also sell produce from home. Our motto is “Local Food for Local people,” we believe this is the only way to live as sustainably as possible on this island of Ireland. We are both vegetarian and believe that to be a more sustainable way of feeding the growing population on this planet. We also have no wish to be involved in the intensive and cruel farming practices that come with meat eating.

Our home is called Prospect Cottage.

Why the name Prospect Cottage?  The word prospect has many meanings, one being “view from a place.” As we live in the valley we have spectacular views from every direction. To the north we have Corry Mountain and Kilronan Mountain is to the south.

Prospect also means “something anticipated.” In gardening there is always anticipation.

Another meaning is “explore esp. for gold.”  We are definitely explorers, but not for gold. We love to explore old and interesting places and believe life is a continuous exploration of places, people and ideas.

  1. What a beautiful farm you have! 🙂

    I wanted to write you and introduce myself.

    I just found your blog via The Pajama Gardener’s blog and wanted to introduce myself.

    I’m a writer too, and a publisher, and I’m trying to connect with garden writers (and readers!) as I have a new garden writing magazine that I think you’d enjoy. I would like to offer you and all your readers a free sample issue (pdf). The link is

    Thank you–I appreciate your time in reading this!


  2. Hi Bridget, Thank you for visiting my blog, for now I’ve found you! I would love to live a bit more like you (polytunnel, goats, canning, …), but for now I’m making due with my small vegetable/fruit garden. Lovely to be connected to someone else in Ireland, living in harmony with the land. Dana

  3. I just adore your blog. I miss visiting Ireland and the change of seasons since I’m here in Florida (displaced from my beloved New England). Your posts constantly remind me that there are still places of sweetness and contentment in the world. I get lost in your photos here at my computer. Thank you for your dedication to this blog.

    Candi in Clearwater

  4. I love your blog and plan to read a lot more of it! You are doing some of the things we would love to do if we ever manage to move to our cottage in Co. Clare! I hope to read a bit about bee keeping here because that’s something we’ve really been considering. Even the donkey! I’m a vegetarian too by the way, though I’ve allowed myself some fish while I’m in the Loop Head Peninsula this summer, because it seems so much a part of the world here that I felt like I had to experience it in order to fully experience the area. But back in Chicago I am a strict vegetarian.

    • Welcome to my blog. I love Chicago…went there on holiday 4 years ago, then on to visit friends in Wisconsin. Loved Oak Park area, went to see Frank Lyodd Wright’s house there. Also went to Gabriel Cousins raw food restaurant when we were in Chicago…absolutely brill!

  5. We love gardens because we both think we’re “Jungle Kitties”. Mom said she loves all the beautiful pictures you post so we decided to nominate you for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award ( Keep on blogging and sharing all your beauty!

  6. Glad to have found your blog! Thanks for visiting ours. What a wonderful life you have made for yourselves.

  7. Hi Bridget – What a lovely homestead – Eden found! – Thanks for sharing.

  8. Hello there, what a lovely website and an absolutely wonderful lifestyle you choose to live. You are most definitely leading by example. I am writing to
    you because I have expressed interest in your website and I
    wish to discuss this with you. Amongst other areas I engage in
    throughout life I am a young author and social commentator. A basic
    overview of my website: can be found here under the: about the labyrinth and why the difference tab.

    The reason for this email/query is to ask you a series of questions:

    1. Is it ok to have a direct link to your website from my blog under
    the page: FRIENDS & SPECIAL INTERESTS. I feel there is tremendous value in your content and wish to share this with the readership thelabyrinthoflife attracts.

    3. If there is a place on your website for this, perhaps you could
    also have a direct link to my website?

    The purpose of what I do is to promote awareness and express truths
    about the way the world operates. I express this information not only through my own experiences but thorough the knowledge and experience
    of others. I utilise sources such as yours and many others to provide
    a deep understanding of broad subject matter. As I stated earlier, I feel what
    you offer has tremendous value and as I have a varied viewing base, I
    want to expose them to the intricacies of what you offer through your

    Please feel free to contact me at any time. I thank you kindly in
    advance for your time and energy.

    With Gratitude.

    Stef. S

    • Hi Stef,
      I would be delighted for you to put a link on your site to mine. I just discovered your site, I like it so I would be more than happy to put it onto my list of recommended sites. Keep up your good work. Will “visit” again soon.

      • Wonderful 🙂 I have placed your website on my friends and special interests page, enjoy the journey. And thank you for your interest and feed back. Be well…

  9. Thanks for stopping by gardengateproject.

  10. Hi there, looking at your photos is enough to feel healthier and more alive 🙂 I think you a doing a great job out there, and I hope this lifestyle catches on to more people. Living sustainably is hard but the rewards are certainly worth it.

  11. Hi,

    I hope this comment gets to you. I’m so far down the list here but…

    I nominated you for two blog awards, The Versatile Blogger and the Kreative Blogger. As part of the nomination process you are asked to:
    1. Write a post mentioning the person who nominated you.
    2. Display the images of the awards – which you can get off my site or I can email to you.
    3. Share 7 fun or interesting facts about yourself.
    4. Nominate 7 other bloggers for the award.

    You don’t have to do it if you don’t want to. I had fun doing mine but it does take some time.


  12. Bridget your blog brings me close to nature and the countryside, I’m so tempted to ditch the city, head out into the country, get a farm and start living… Here’s a small tribute from my blog to yours. Do check it out at

  13. Thanks for stoping by I am looking forward to reading about your wonderful life on your farm.Laurence

  14. Thank you for the like on my post. Your blog is beautiful. Cheers, Nightlake

  15. Thanks for visiting my blog today. It looks like you have a lovely little green bit of heaven there. I look forward to reading more about your undertakings.

  16. Very nice. It sounds like you guys have a great life. And I didn’t know there were so many different ways to interpret the word prospect!

  17. Hi Bridget from all of us here in the Fluffy Tufts Den!
    We wanted you to know that we have nominated you for the “Awesome Blog Content” Award!
    You can read about it here:
    We love your blog! 🙂

  18. wow…what a great blog! keep up the work – we will be keeping up on your posts as a follower, and thanks for liking our post as well!

    Jim and Mary

  19. Love your “About” page. That’s what I want to do: put a photo of our place at the top, but I’ve just started blogging, and I haven’t figured it out. Thanks for liking my blog. You’ve already got me thinking………..the tunnel idea is new to me, but my husband knew what you were talking about. I love that you sustainable, and I love what you are doing. It’s also great to read about Ireland.

  20. Hi Bridget,
    Your blog is so enjoyable…I do love reading about Ireland every time…and glad youliked my Blog…

  21. Hi Bridget, just found your blog and am about to click follow and explore some more. I’m already getting some much needed inspiration from your posts – particularly welcome right now as the weathers just turned very wintry here in northern Spain and the land is waterlogged so I can’t get digging…..which I really need to do as my veg plot has been sorely neglected this last year.
    I grew up in Roscommon, not so far from Arigna, so it’s nice to have an eye on that part of the world too.
    Thanks again for the inspiration!

  22. Thanks for the “like” and for following my blog! I was surprised to see you are in Ireland–my grandparents came from Ireland, from County Clare and County Waterford. I have visited Ireland a couple of times and I’ve always loved it. I’ve enjoyed looking at your blog!

  23. Wow Bridget your lifestyle sounds like a dream come true! I am really looking forward to ambling through your posts and seeing some more photos. I am quite envious that you have a donkey! One day, one day. We also did a beekeeping course last year but have yet to get some hives. I’m sure I will enjoy following you and learn lots of interesting things too. Blessings to you, the animals and the land. x

  24. Thank you so much for being the first to like my blog! How long have you been blogging? Your farm sounds amazing! I have a very close friend who is a large animal vet outside of Dublin. She absolutely loves Ireland and I don’t think she will ever return to the states! 🙂 well thank you again, very exciting to have my first “like”!!

  25. Thanks for following Ripples! I’m also Irish and it’s so neat to be able to read about your life there. I’ve nominated you for The Versatile Blogger Award! You deserve it. Check out my post for more details about the award. Looking forward to reading more!

  26. […] Can’t wait to explore this blog further and nominate Arignagardener. […]

  27. Hello Bridget, You have a lovely blog with great photos and a philosophy about life that I like. And thank you so much for “liking” my post on Bean Bakes. It’s been a pleasure to meet you. Claire

  28. I love your description of your property and way of life. More and more of us are desiring to live this kind of life. “Take only what you need. Always give something back.”

  29. I can’t find the latest post!

    So I’ll wish you a very happy Christmas here!


  30. Hi Bridget! Your world sounds beautiful and you are living a life grounded by nature. Thank you for stopping by my blog and “liking” a post. I am off to explore the rest of your space here in blog land. Margie

  31. Thanks for stopping by my blog. I did my masters research in far Western Ireland (County Mayo – Belmullet specifically) so rural Ireland has a special place in my heart. I talked to a lot of farmers there, but none that really lived this way, so it’s cool to read about your experiences. Are you involved in the Transition movement at all out there? It emerged from a permaculture class in Ireland.

  32. Thank you for liking my blog. Your Prospect Cottage and farm sounds lovely. And now you have your Bees . . . Explorers for that Golden Pollen!

  33. Thanks for stopping by my blog! I was really glad you did, because that led me to yours, and I know I will enjoy seeing your beautiful place and what you are doing!

  34. You really are “living the dream.” Your life sounds amazing. I love the idea of getting milk from the goats. How different does it taste from cow’s milk? Do you ever make cheese from it?

  35. After only a quick look around there’s a lot that interests me here! Looking forward to exploring your part of the world a bit more…thanks.
    Best wishes,

  36. Hi Bridget,
    Thanks for “liking” my recent post. I think it’s great that you can grow your own food; I certainly can’t aspire to that on my increasingly rooty little patch. Mostly I garden in order to stay close to the earth. I also envy that you must get rain in summer, perhaps too much sometimes? Here in Victoria, BC we have a “Mediterranean” climate, which means dry summers. Your blog looks interesting!
    Audrey Driscoll

  37. Thanks heaps for liking my post! I’ll be keeping an eye on your blog, it looks amazing. I think maybe my life is heading in this kinda direction. Exciting!

  38. The “other” Prospect Cottage is the late Derek Jarman’s at Dungeness in Kent. It has a stunning garden which is very much a part of the landscape. A very special place.

  39. Hello Bridget! How nice it seems this home of yours. I love to hear from people who like country life. I will certainly come back and see what’s new.
    Thank you for adding me to your favourite Blotanist list. Have a nice day, Vesna

  40. Hello Bridget! How lovely to have found you via the comments box on my blog. Your blog is new to me and I agree with Sue and Catriona, both commented above. This is a lovely, informative calm space and one which I will enjoy reading. I envy your living space with a view in Ireland – and your polytunnel! I live a simple life here in London, but I sometimes feel I would be better suited to the countryside! Thanks for commenting on my Monarda post – if you can’t grow it in heavy soil, it would be worth container growing some, especially as you have beehives. Caro x

  41. Sounds like a similar life that I used to lead. I had a herd of Saanens that I used to milk plus pigs and fowl. I worked a 12 hour day every day for 20 years with no holidays. I have retired now; at first I missed it all, but am beginning to enjoy other things in life whilst still trying to live a simple life.

  42. Thanks for your comment on my Blog so glad you found me, and then in turn I have found you. We are doing SO many things the same as each other in our little pockets of the world.

    I am really looking forward to getting a goat next Spring, in the meantime we have BIG changes a foot in the very near future, so I am biding my time.

    I will be back to read more of your wonderful Blog, but first I have tomatoes in my polytunnel calling me to tie them up, they are drooping under the wieght of suddenly expanding fruits!!

    There is no rest on a small holding, but living this way is simply the best.

    Sue xx

  43. Thanks Bridget – found it and signed up. Look forward to reading all about yourselves, your land and your animals.

  44. lovely post Bridget and thanks for your comments on my blog hort’curious really appreciate it. How do I follow this blog?

  45. HI Bridget, enjoying your blog today! Am admiring your lovely layout while I tear my own hair out with blogger! There is a lot of calm and honesty here and your lovely warmth shines through. Ca

  46. Goat’s milk? We are also vegetarian, but our dairy products are as organic and sustainable as we can buy. Would like to be vegan, but I tried it, and I can’t go without milk in my tea, and cheese. So we compromise. 3 meanings of prospect is enticing.

  47. Your lifestyle seems idealic!
    Thank you for commenting on my basket efforts.


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