Glenbower Wild Garlic Pesto

Last Monday, 16th April, I spent a wonderful morning with Jessica Bonenfant Coogan and Lou Stepney-Power.

I had met Lou and her boys, Tom and Sam during one of our Creative Killeagh Sensory Trails. I noticed Sam’s interest in these dark green plants, which were spread thickly across the woodland floor. Sam introduced me to Wild Garlic and he encouraged me to taste it.

What a wonder he shared with me. Thank you Sam.

I was delighted in my learning and intrigued to hear about his mum’s making of pesto from these Wild Garlic leaves.

Following the Sensory Trail, I made contact with Lou and asked if she would share her experience and knowledge of this plant with me. She generously responded.

We walked out into Glenbower Woods together.

We smelt, tasted, walked, shared, searched for and chose.

Lou shared stories and her knowledge of other plants and trees with me.

We took only as much as we needed.

We stepped carefully, trying to avoid standing on plants.

On returning to Lou’s home, we made Glenbower Wild Garlic Pesto. The transformation in colour as we whizzed up the ingredients absolutely delighted my senses.

We tasted our produce and reflected on the time we had spent together. I felt much energy and excitement in learning about other foods and drinks that could be made with ingredients from our local environment. Elderflower and elderberry cordial, jams from the Autumnal berries, gorse added to ice cream or as a yellow dying agent.

Thank you Lou, Tom, Sam and Jessica.


An Invitation to a Sensory Party!

My name is Lisa Cahill and I’m one of the artists involved in Creative Killeagh.

Following a creative movement session with the Monday Club in February, I noticed how intrigued and excited I felt in the act of listening. Listening to personal stories and reflections about May Sundays gone by, but also about the place of Glenbower Wood.

I felt drawn to Glenbower Wood and wanted to get to know this place a little more.

I had a need to spend time in the Wood myself, at different times of the day, listening, exploring, walking and climbing, feeling, sitting, looking closely, smelling and a little tasting.

I had a need to spend time with others in the wood – spending time, noticing, sensing, exploring together and alone. The development of the sensory trails evolved from these curiosities – a sensory trail – a meeting along a path, to engage with this place and environment in playful and sensorially delightful ways.

Selected images 1 sensory trail

I am interested in expanding the possibilities of how we feel, see, hear, touch and taste this place. I am interested in meeting this Woodland in ways that might offer the opportunity to meet and experience this environment through the fullness of our body (senses), mind (our thinking brain) and heart (the enjoyment of play amongst the trees).

Through my artistic practice, I engaged not only with the five traditional senses of touch, taste, smell, hearing and sight, but also kinaesthesia and proprioception – which are the senses related to the movement of our bodies. I also include the heart as a sensory organ. (Mark Chandlee Taylor, Senses and Perception, 2017)

The sensory delights continue with a return indoors to Greywood Arts for some ‘made with love’ baking.

Returning indoors to drinks and buns at Greywood Arts
Following the trail outside, the senses delight in a warm drink and a delicious blueberry bun.

Upcoming Sensory Trails take place on Saturday 7th April at 10.30am and Wednesday 11th April at 5.30pm. Please book your place, as it is really useful and helpful to know who will be attending.

Sensing Place 3