Turf

Weekly Photo Challenge – Off Season

In Ireland, turf makes one think of warms fires on cold winter days, but the turf must be cut in early summer so it is dry for winter use. Traditionally turf was cut by hand using a slane. It was hard work. The turf sods were then left to dry. They had to be turned and then stacked into small stacks and later into big ones. Once the turf was dry, usually by the end of the summer, it was brought home from the bog, using donkeys or horse and carts.

Machine cut turf

Machine cut turf, drying

Today turf cutting is more likely to be done by machine as in the photo above. The machines compact the wet peat and are not as environmentally friendly as the traditionally hand cutting. Tractors and trailers are used to bring it home.  It is still a valuable fuel resource in much of rural Ireland.

Posted in response to this week’s  photo challenge – off season