Welcome to Talamh Beo

Bridget Murphy's Farm

EIP Soil Biodiversity Project Participant


Bridget Murphy


Dromard, Co Sligo

Water Catchment Area:

Sligo Drowse

Land Use:

Sheep, Ponies, Bees, Agroforestry, Commonage

Bridget Murphy's Farm

Bridget’s 125 acre farm is located in Dromard, County Sligo and includes 25 hectares of commonage. The farm is situated on a steep hillside, which grants it the most wonderful views across the county, including a beautiful profile of Ben Bulben in the distance.

Whilst Bridget’s farming activities were primarily sheep farming for the past two decades, she is transitioning from conventional sheep-farming to bees, seed & agroforestry. This was, in part, a transition brought on by health issues. Bridget also keeps ponies in order to diversify the grazing regimes, which ensures her land is well maintained and the plants species are in balance.

Over the past decade, Bridget has introduced the native black bee to her farm, and the number of hives is growing year by year. Not only are the bees excellent for pollination of seed, they also provide another diversified source of income for the farm. Autumn sees Bridget harvesting fruits and vegetables from her orchard and polytunnel and preparing for next season’s growing – and not only are potatoes, fruits and vegetables planted, but 150 to 200 trees are planted every year also! 

With over 30 years experience working on the ground with farmers around livelihoods, land use & agrarian reform, Bridgi brings a ground-based approach to areas of research and policy. Agrarian reform includes transitioning from the current model which is focused on industry and competitive growth, to an agro-ecological model that delivers for land, people & community. She is also Project Managing this Soil EIP for Talamh Beo.

To hear more about a year on Bridget’s farm, you can watch her interview in her Farm Introduction blog.

You can also connect with Bridget on her social platforms:

My farm focuses on exploring seeds, bees, soils, agroforestry and managed grazing in the Uplands. I have farmed on my own these past 20 years, so bring a dedicated focus on gender to the discussions.

EIP Soil Diversity Project

Bridget’s farm at Dromard consists of shallow, well drained mineral soils, higher heath and blanket bog. Through her participation in the EIP Soil Diversity Project, Bridget trialled and documented a range of technical innovations  (such as bioNutrient meters) and physical innovations. Bridget concentrated on feeding the biodiversity in her soil organic matter depleted trial field using composted sheep farmyard manure, hay mulch and nettle and comfrey teas.

With the a heavy workload from managing the EIP Project, it was agreed that Bridget’s daughter, Skye, would undertake Dr Elaine Ingham’s Launch Your Lab (LYL) educational course. This has benefits not only for the future of the family farm, but also Skye’s students – Skye is a secondary school Agricultural Science teacher, so her training and certification in look at soil microbes can be brought directly to the next generation of young people involved in agriculture.

Bridget’s farm walk took place on the 28th of June, 2022, and focused setting up and using microscopes for soil testing and analysis. 

A video summary of Bridget’s farm walk can be viewed below.

You can check out Skye’s course certificates and find out more about Bridgi’s trial plot, experiment and baseline soil test results in her project report.

Project Report

Farm Walk

Bridget's Farm Walk

Bridget's farm walk focused on a microscope workshop for the EIP project participants. See how everyone got on in the video below.

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