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An Inspiring Agroforestry Field Trip at Brookfield Farm.

What a truly wonderfully inspiring day we had on our field trip to Brookfield Farm on July 6th 2024. Hosted by the innovative and inspiring organic farmer, beekeeper, agriculture educator, and creative director, Ailbhe Gerrard, the event took place on the southern shores of Lough Derg, Co. Tipperary. The day was filled with enriching discussions and presentations, making it a memorable experience for all who attended.



A Day of Learning and Inspiration

The event was graced by a number of esteemed guest speakers who shared their expertise and passion for various aspects of sustainable farming and environmental protection. Here’s a breakdown of the day’s engaging schedule:

  • Maureen Kilgore from the Irish Agroforestry Forum shared invaluable insights into the principles and benefits of agroforestry, highlighting how integrating trees and shrubs into agricultural landscapes can enhance biodiversity and sustainability.

  • Brian Walsh from The Woodland League captivated the audience with his knowledge on woodland management and the importance of maintaining natural forests for ecological balance and biodiversity conservation.

  • Jason McCormack from FoodTree discussed edible landscapes, emphasizing the potential of growing truffles and other forest garden products as part of a sustainable and profitable farming practice.

  • Rights of Nature session included a short 12-minute film followed by presentations on local campaigns.

  • Speakers such as Martina Finn from CELT and Rights of Nature Galway, and Alison Hough from the Environmental Justice Network Ireland and Rights of the River Shannon Campaign, highlighted the significance of recognizing the legal rights of natural entities to ensure their protection and preservation.



Topics that Captivated Us

Throughout the day, we delved into numerous compelling topics that broadened our understanding of the interconnection between agriculture and nature. These included:

  • The benefits of a Rights of Nature approach

  • Close to Nature Farming and Woodland Management

  • Agroforestry practices and principles

  • Organic farming techniques

  • Forest gardening and growing truffles

  • Creating edible landscapes

  • Insights on the Citizen Assembly on Biodiversity Ireland

  • All Island Rights of Nature campaigns

  • Mindfulness practices for farmers and nature enthusiasts


A Day of Community and Collaboration

We are deeply grateful to everyone who joined us and contributed to the day’s success. The enthusiasm and engagement of the attendees made the event not only educational but also incredibly enjoyable. A special thank you to all our volunteers and supporters who played a crucial role in making the day possible.


Looking Ahead

For those interested in continuing the journey of learning and embracing sustainable practices, please join us at our next agroforestry event. Details can be found at CELT's events page.


Gratitude

This event was supported by the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine, and the Irish Environmental Network. We thank them for their invaluable support.


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