Peacocks, Ents & Almond Blossom - Our New Bagend Mural!

“The Ents loved the great trees, and the wild woods and the slopes of the high hills, and they drank of the mountain streams, and ate only such fruit as the trees let fall in their path, and they learnt of the Elves and spoke with the trees”

J.R.R Tolkien

Bagend has retreated even further into the landscape, and a colourful peacock and old Ent have joined our team. No, I haven’t lost the plot, but have you seen our new mural?!

Part of the reason people love to come on a Rustic Retreat here at Bagend, is because it’s so well blended in to the surrounding landscape. It allows them to, as nineteenth-century nature lover John Muir put it, ‘go within, by going out.” The main house is surrounded by orange, lemon and walnut trees, green grass and all manner of critters, big and small and we encourage our guests to live as close as possible to it all!

A couple of weeks ago, though, we went one step further and nature is finally starting to takeover the house…

The Bagend Mural

We’ve had a brand new mural painted on the front wall of the house, and I’m delighted with it!

For a while now, I wanted to bring some colour into the white building, and blend the house and verandah more into the hillside behind. I considered over 120 artists to do the job, but in the end the choice was easy. Charlotte Kessler, of Lemonstone Art, has a clear talent for bringing nature to life in her paintings, and I thought she was the perfect choice. I knew that if her bees were anything to go by, we’d be in for a treat!

From our earliest discussions, Charlotte and I agreed that the mural needed to reflect the fairytale magic and energy of Bagend, but also needed to pay homage to its Tolkienesque routes! Charlotte came up with the great idea to paint a peacock to guard the entrance to the house. I thought it was inspired, and loved the mythical symbolism, but also its link to aspects of yoga and the vibrant colours in its plume. As Charlotte wrote on her own blog:

“Peacocks represent the vital life force and are connected with the Goddess Juno of the sky and stars. They are symbolic of renewal and rejuvenation and link with the cycles of the moon. I liked that this animal could be a powerful visual connection to many aspects of yoga practice.”

We also agreed to paint an almond tree, not only to mirror the ‘Ents’ from Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings, but so that we could enjoy year round almond blossom, too! Appropriate, given that as Charlotte was working, our almond trees were adorned with the most beautiful white and pink marshmallow trinkets. One of the great joys of Southern Spain at this time of year!

The work took only three days. We were against the clock! Charlotte had a small window, and we had to be ready to welcome the first retreaters by early March. I was so pleased with the result! Charlotte met the brief perfectly, and her work has brought a calming energy and a feeling of magical wildness to the Bagend verandah! Even the Marmadukes were impressed…

“Perhaps even the spirits of nature living there were just as pleased with it as we and his family of marmadukes were.”

Charlotte Kessler

Do you want to come and check out Charlotte’s new mural and enjoy a yoga retreat close to wild nature? All Bagend retreaters will receive a special discount voucher at Charlotte’s online shop. I’ll give you more details when you arrive!

“The world is changing: I feel it in the water, I feel it in the earth, and I smell it in the air.”

Treebeard, J.R.R. Tolkien

The world is changing. I see it in all of the good, kind and gentle people who pass through Bagend on a Rustic Retreat. We are just glad to be able to feed, nourish and rejuvenate the good and conscious people of the world with yoga, meditation, fresh vegetarian food and a good helping of laughter during their short time here.

We look forward to seeing you soon! If you want to see more of Charlotte’s work, check out her website, here. I hope you enjoyed your time at Bagend, Charlotte, and thankyou so much for your Bagendissimo mural!


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