Foraging joy! by Laura

After a long, hot and dry summer finally some welcome rain finally came in September. We were away for the first rainfall but there was more and after a couple of days of sun following the showers we headed up to some silver birch and chestnut forest further up the mountain.

Foraging is one of mine and Marko's favourite activites. It connects us body and soul to the earth and her generosity in a very profund and immediate way. To forage well we must become intimate with the forest and become sensitive to changes in air temparature and humidity. We must learn the colour, form and habit of the foods we seek. As we increase this felt-sense 'knowledge' we simultaneously cultivate our relationship with the individual species and the forest as a whole, until it is not only the physical signs that direct us but also more sublte signs that are just beyond our physical perception. We come a little closer to the natural world and experience our earthy roots.

Foraging is also a queit, privileged time to be in the forest. It is time savour the sights, smells and sounds which are always new and changing and always welcoming.

Finding our own food also connect us to our ancestors and the ways they found food and the different rythm they lived their lives by; the rythm of the seasons and the rythm of the time and effort it takes to find and prepare wild food. I am very aware that foraging for mushrooms and collecting chestnuts and eating wild greens - however regularly - does not really give me an insight into the hardships that my ancestors endured finding and cultivating enough food for them to survive on. I am daily grateful for my ability to buy food that I do not have to struggle to produce myself.

But I am also grateful for becoming more aware of what it takes to be supported by my immediate surrounding - the forest. Whether that is in firewood, mushrooms, wild greens or building materials I increasingly feel nourished by this place. It is not only a physical feeding and protection but also a one of the spirit and the soul. The forest nourishes me in all dimensions of my being and for that I am truly grateful and why I want to bring people here to experience the same.

 

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Events

Benfeita, May 1st 2017
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Quinta da Floresta, Benfeita October 21st 10 - 5pm

I am very happy to announce another opportunity to begin to learn the art and science of foraging in our beautiful valley in the Serra do Açor.

Quinta da Floresta, Benfeita 12 - 15 Ocober 2017

In our times crafts such as green woodwork are something truly revolutionary. We find making a useful product with ones own hands straight from the forest is totally inspiring.  Not only is such work simply sustainable it is also deeply...

Quinta da Floresta, Benfeita - Date TBC 2018

People have retreated to wild places for millennia to find inner peace and a greater perspective on life. Nature, in it’s simplicity and beauty, supports a profound relaxation in body, mind and soul.

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