Courmettes encore

Evening meeting

Last week we went up to Courmettes again for a couple of days. The occasion was the holiday of A Rocha UK. And, as everybody who comes to Courmettes seems to be, they were profoundly impressed by the site.

The lawns outside the centre are exceptionally green this year.

It was however a slight pity about the weather, which at least on the Monday and Tuesday mingled sun with low cloud and some very heavy rain. Mind you, we’re not sure you call it low cloud when you’re at 820 m. Although there had been a very carefully prepared programme, given the temperamental weather it inevitably got readjusted. The main reason for being up was for Chris to give his widely appreciated natural history and archaeology walk (with geology thrown in) from the old house to a viewpoint overlooking the Gorges du Loup and from there down into the area of the marshes which at the moment are very wet indeed.

Waterproofs and mud aren’t usual for June at Courmettes

Fortunately (one would like to think due to answered prayer) the rain held off both on the Monday and the Tuesday when Chris repeated a shorter version of the walk.

A tour of the old house and its history

Lettuce growing in a raised bed

One of the plus points about visiting Courmettes at intervals is that it’s easy to see how much progress has been made. Now with the new roof on there are clear improvements being made to the interior. A new permaculture plot under Frédéric Baumann is well under way and it looks as if very soon there will be 10 members of staff at Courmettes.

Frédéric talking about the permaculture project which aims to grow fruit and vegetables sustainably and organically

Bee orchid

 

 

One of the virtues of the extraordinarily wet spring/early summer is the abundance of wild flowers including some spectacular orchids. At the time of writing we haven’t heard how the rest of the week went, but there was a lot of appreciation and we wouldn’t be surprised to see some people back again at Courmettes, possibly even as volunteers. It’s that sort of a place.

It was a holiday, but there were opportunities to volunteer as well, such as weeding one of the new flowerbeds

Group photo including some of the Courmettes team

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