Each one of us looks on the landscape of County Cavan in a different way. We see beauty and take pleasure in different things. I celebrate the undulating, drumlin, landscape, that is, curved, and confusing. The underlying soils subtly vary across the district, with names like black earths, channels, daubs, marls, sandy clays and free draining soils over limestone.
Much of county Cavan is a patchwork. We have small areas of boggy wetlands, in the hollows, where plants only found in these areas thrive. Here dragonflies patrol and newts breed. There are wee patches of farmland that have not been “improved” and still have wildflowers and butterflies and bumble bees. There are small patches of scrub woodland, with bird’s song and spring flowers under the hazel wands. Other plots have big majestic oaks, very old, but still with another few centauries to go. Those oaks, with the natural woodland under storey left to flourish, provide a home for hundreds of insects and birds. There are open small areas of heather, reminding us of far bigger areas in the past. This unique habitat, millennia old, cannot be recreated. When it is gone its gone forever.
Unfortunately, human activities tend to reduce the landscape to a bland sameness. We homogenise things. The wet area is drained and filled in, the old meadow is ploughed up and reseeded, the scrub is cleared, and the heath land is improved, limed and fertilized. It all ends up the same. The plants are the same , the insects , the birds. However, these small areas, if left, add to the richness of County Cavan.