5th November

Welcome to the Eightfold Year. Every day a different painting will appear, along with moon phases, saints days, seasonal plants and other festive celebrations.

The Eightfold Year is the division of the year into its eight essential parts, including the two solstices (the shortest and longest days of the year), Summer - June 21st, Winter - December 21st, and two equinoxes (when the hours of day and night are equal), Spring - March 21st, and Autumn - September 21st. These dates are generally correct but there can be some occasional adjustment by a day or two. The remaining four symbolise critical seasonal dates: Imbolc - February 2nd, Mayday - May 1st, Llamas – August 1st and Samhuin (Halloween) - October 31st. They relate to the positioning of earth to the sun, moon and stars and are instrinsically linked with the farming calendar - lambing, harvesting etc. They are timelessly rooted in the diversity of cultures world wide and are essential to spirituality, religion, ritual and agriculture. They establish our place on this earth and our connection to the cosmos, bonding our understanding of nature and natural law and universality…

The Eightfold Year is reflected in my work, particularly in this series of 365 painted cards - one for every day of the year, and also in numerous large paintings and hangings often used in rituals and at various festivals. Many of these drawings and sketches - and numerous photos – have been created on site on numerous journeys and walks throughout the British Isles and Ireland.


Near Ardmore, County Cork: Jamie Reid

Moon Phases, November 2014:
Full Moon – November 6, 22:23
Last Quarter – November 14, 15:15
New Moon – November 22, 12:32
First Quarter – November 29, 10:06



Saint's Day: Elizabeth

Guy Fawkes Night - disappointing failure of the Gunpowder Plot to blow up Parliament in 1605 is celebrated with bonfires, fireworks and burning of effigies.

Included here on this site is a wonderful project by Saul Hughes, who is working on a plant calender for every week of the year, featuring indigenous flowering plants, their environments, histories and uses.

Flowering now: Hedge Bindweed
Botanical Name, Calystegia sepium.
Family. Convolvulaceae.
Gaelic Name. Iadh Lus.
Also known as: Devil’s vine, Devil’s guts, hedge lilly, and lady’s nightcap.
Known commonly as bindweed, this plant is well known as a very invasive plant, This is reflected in it’s gaelic name Iadh Lus which means the plant that surrounds; The family group in which it belongs also contains members of the sacred morning glory plants which all entwine around anything in their immediate environment to reach the light, the family name Convolvulaceae comes from the Latin convolvere, which means to entwine, It’s botanical name Calystegia refers to its covered calx, and the word Sepium means of the hedge.
The Bindweed is the largest native flower to the British Isles, anything bigger than a bindweed flower was at sometime introduced. It was once used as a herb the root having Demulcent,(Soothing Mucous) Diuretic (Increases urine flow) and Febrifuge (Reduces fever)qualities, and is strongly purgative, it was believed to increase the flow of bile.
Bindweed is well known due to its invasive manner and it taking over whole swaths of hedgerow, by twining around other plants and restricting their growth, its roots also have the ability to put toxins in the ground to help limit the growth of neighbouring plants.
The long tongued Bees (The Apidae) and the short tongued Bess(The Halictidae) collect nectar from this species and serve as it’s pollinators, Beetles such as the Scarabaeidae feed on the pollen but serve it not by pollinating.*

Also on this day:

1831 – Nat Turner, American slave leader, is tried, convicted, and sentenced to death in Virginia.

1872 – Women's suffrage: In defiance of the law, suffragist Susan B. Anthony votes for the first time, and is later fined $100.

1916 – The Everett Massacre takes place in Everett, Washington as political differences lead to a shoot-out between the Industrial Workers of the World organizers and local police

1967 – The Hither Green rail crash in the United Kingdom kills 49 people. The survivors include Robin Gibb of the Bee Gees.

* All information regarding the uses of the plants is exactly for that informational purposes only, and that the author and owners of the web do not encourage anyone to be eating, or disturbing wild plants, but merely to admire them in their natural environment and to ponder on their rise and fall within human culture.