Farming for Nature (FFN) ambassador Kate Egan will host an afternoon walk on her 9ac “chemical-free farm” this Saturday (June 4), in Co. Westmeath.

Egan’s farm is dedicated to biodiversity and permaculture, and people are invited to experience her farming system for themselves, this weekend at 2:00p.m

The farm is currently “on a break from commercial food production” Egan said, however her produce includes fruit, vegetables, geese, ducks and hens, all of which are sold at a local market to reduce food miles and contribute to the local economy.

The farm also plays host to a number of workshops, campers and community events at different times of the year, with regular visits from local schoolchildren.

Egan is also working towards having a climate-resilient farm that incorporates wildlife as much as possible, she said:

“Our first priority is offering a sanctuary, providing an oasis for wildlife.”

Since beginning to farm in Westmeath, Egan has planted hundreds of native trees and is currently working on digging a pond. She also manages some grassy spaces with pollinator-friendly flowers to encourage biodiversity.

Elsewhere on site, woodlands include crab apple, wild rose, gorse, wild cherry, honeysuckle and moss.

Farm walk

FFN ambassadors host regular farm walks, with at least one each week, to encourage networking among like-minded farmers. The walks are open for anyone to attend and aim to facilitate knowledge transfer in relation to sustainability and organic farming.

Within the schedule of events, a range of farming systems will be displayed including tillage; dairy; forestry; market gardening; high-nature value; conservation agriculture; and productive smallholding.

After the tour of Egan’s enterprise, the next farm walk in the schedule will take place on Wednesday, June 8, at Louis McAuley’s 1,700ac tillage farm in Co. Meath.

Costing €10, the walks are part of a non-profit initiative where any money received will be circulated back into the farming community.