Ayurvedic medicine and plants

A New Year's resolution - to swim every day.

How to relax

How to relax.

How to relax.

Reading relaxation tips recommended by Mind Organisation.

I was not surprised to see many tips that relate to GlenMyu Estate.

We find that our guests really need some downtime on their holiday. It can be quite tiring rushing around the country visiting the tourist spots in the heat.

As they leave ready for their next adventure, we can see that they are relaxed and energised for the next part of their trip around this paradise island.

What were the tips on how to relax in Mind Organistaions' article?

The tips were as follows:

  • Take a break
  • Try active relaxation
  • Focus on your breathing
  • Get creative
  • Spend time in nature
  • Picture yourself somewhere serene
  • Listen to music
  • Do a tech check

What is Mind Organisation?

Mind Organisation say that “We’re Mind. We’re here to fight for mental health. For support, for respect, for you”.

They are an organisation that aims to get support and respect for people experiencing a mental health problem. 

What tips on how to relax relate to GlenMyu Estate?

As GlenMyu Estate has evolved over the last two years since opening, we have found that our guests naturally do several of the items on the list whilst they are on holiday here. 

Taking a Break

Clearly being on holiday, guests are taking a break from their normal everyday lives.

However, we also find that many of our guests take a break from their travel and exploration of the island when they are here.

Often, they decide to chill out at the five acre estate rather than packing too much in on their holiday.

As the Sri Lankan hill country has a temperature more akin to a UK summer, some find it a relief to get away from stifling heat.

Many of our guests say that that they get their best nights sleep at GlenMyu Estate on their holiday. We do not use air-conditioning at the property as it is not required as it does not get too hot.

Active relaxation - what's that?

Active relaxation is gentle exercise such as walling (at your own pace), classes such as Yoga, Pilates or gentle stretching.

At GlenMyu Estate for guest enjoy walking around the garden.

The property is on a slope and therefore you automatically do some gentle exercise by climbing up the pathways and stairs. I often find myself creating a little heavier due to the slope.

Getting creative

GlenMyu Estate is an environment which inspires creativity. We have had several guests bring their sketchbooks or paints with them to spend time on their art.

Picking up the camera to take some photos and videos.

Getting creative
A writers retreat in Sri Lanka

Some authors have stayed at the estate and worked on their books without the detraction of home.

It delights us that we have created an environment that guests can relax and get creative.

Spending time in nature

At GlenMyu Estate we have tried to work with nature and plant species that enhance and repair the biodiversity that was wiped from the land.

Historically the estate was part of a larger tea plantation and subsequently used to grow sugar cane. After being abandoned for many year it was full of Guinea Grass, fast growing cattle fodder. This took all the light and nutrients in the soil from other plants.

After years of replacing the Guinea Grass with endemic species and planting to develop a food forest for animals and humans GlenMyu Estate was open to guests. 

Ducklings at GlenMyu Estate.
Showing our guests around GlenMyu Estate on the garden tour.

Our guest love the garden tour and seeing what we fruits, vegetables,and spices are grown. 

For some, it is a revelation on where their food comes from and the work entailed to get to onto their plate.

There is also plenty of wildlife to see, whether it is the animals and birds that are regular visitors or the residents on the land.

Picture yourself somewhere serene

There is no need to picture yourself, because you are there in the moment.

GlenMyu Estate is a beautiful environment reflecting the nature that surrounds us. 

Listen to music

We find natures music to be the soundtrack that we listen to at GlenMyu Estate.

Whether it its the streams full of water blocking out unwanted noises.

Or the birds that let you know that it’s time to get up in the morning or that they are off to bed.

Natuure’s soundtrack helps you to relax.

Do a tech check

Although we do have free Wifi at GlenMyu Estate, we are always delighted on how little our guests spend on their devices.

We also do not have televisions at the estate. Who needs to watch poor quality programming anyway. Netflix will be waiting for you when you get home!

This allows you to live in the moment, reduce stress and really enjoy your holiday.

Relax on Holiday at GlenMyu Estate

We love it when our guests are truly relaxed after their stay at GlenMyu Estate.

It is really important for you to make sure you allocate some downtime during your vacation.  Hopefully you will visit GlenMyu Estate and switch off in this environment delivered by nature.

Stay at GlenMyu Estate and immerse yourself in the Sri Lankan Hill Country

A stay at GlenMyu Estate as you explore the Sri Lankan Hill Country and see sights like Horton Plains National Park is a unique experience.

We only have three bedrooms and you will need to book early during the peak holiday season.

The estate is usually within an hours drive of the major sightseeing locations such as Nine Arch Bridge, Ella Town, Upper Diyaluma Waterfall, Lipton’s Seat, Bambarakanda Waterfall and many more,

GlenMyu Estate is listed on Booking.com and Airbnb.
Contact us by the WhatsApp button on our website for direct booking rates.

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Restore your Mind Body and Soul

Restore your Mind Body and Soul.

Restore your Mind Body and Soul. A holiday in Sri Lanka at GlenMyu Estate is a great place for you to recuperate from a stressful life.

When researching Mind Body and Soul I came across various articles about why it is important to work on these elements.

I was looking for an article from a source where there was some science behind the idea however found mainly blog posts and organisations trying to sell a course to reduce stress.

There were lots of yoga and mediation experiences on offer which was not really what I was after.

We have had guests meditate at GlenMyu Estate in the main lounge looking towards the beautiful views of the southern hills.

There have also been lots of guests that get up early in the morning and do their yoga session from the same spot. If the weather has been good then the lawn in front of the house is also a space connected with nature which is amenable to practising yoga.

Prior to the issues in Sri Lanka in May to September 2022 we had guests that were considering using GlenMyu Estate for a yoga retreat for a small selected group. Perhaps this will be reinvigorated since the country is now stable.

Nature Aids in Health and Wellness for Mind, Body and Soul

The University of Maryland’s School of Public Health has an article title “Nature Aids in Health and Wellness for Mind, Body and Soul, New Article Finds”.

It opens “Nature has several benefits that impact a person’s overall well-being”. 

One of the main aims at GlenMyu Estate is to provide a facility which brings you closer to nature. The five acre estate has pathways for you to roam and quiet places for you to sit surrounded by green spaces with the sound of water and animals as natures soundtrack.

We feel that we are aligned in the Scandinavian word and meaning behind “friluftsliv”. The concept focuses on “‘living in the free air’ and it’s about our love of the outdoors.”.

You can read our article “What is Friluftsliv” here‘.

Restore your Body.

Lots of people want to go on holiday to relax and unwind. This is certainly something you can do at GlenMyu Estate. If you just want to relax, sleep in, eat great food that’s fine by us. Sitting next to the swimming pool soaking up the atmosphere and nature surrounding you is almost like meditation itself. 

However, if you want some mild exercise Ru is happy to provide a garden tour so you can see what we grow at the estate. We have five acres at the estate so the walk can be as far and intensive ass you like.

Swimming in the Natural Spring Fed Swimming Pool is a way to increase your exercise and get the heart going. 

If you are brave and able enough, we may even show you the waterfall at the extent of the land. You will have to go the last ten feet by ropes so it’s up to you.

Opportunities to walk, hike and move your body.

A proper workout is available within an hours drive from GlenMyu Estate. 

There are gentle hikes and more challenging treks nearby.

Lipton’s Seat is a nice walk up to the viewpoint where Sir Thomas Lipton used to survey his vast tea plantations. It’s nice to get there early in the morning to see the sunrise.

Upper Diyaluma Waterfall is a wonderful natural place to experience within forty minutes drive of the estate. Hike up to the top pools of the waterfall and have a dip in the cool refreshing water. We love this experience ourselves.

Bambarakanda Waterfall is another gentle walk to the base of the tallest waterfall in Sri Lanka. The pool is stunningly beautiful. 

Hiking and Walking.

Horton Plains National Park is a UNESCO heritage site just over an hours drive from GlenMyu Estate. The eleven kilometre circular hike takes in stunning views ay Lesser World’s End and Greater World’s End (if the  clouds don’t obscure the view). You will be walking surrounded by the unique nature in this montane cloud forest. As you will be hiking at an elevation of around 2,200 metres you will have a good workout. The hike is not difficult however, you will know that you have had a god walk when you finish. A dip in the pool when you get back to GlenMyu Estate is a great way to work out those tense muscles. 

Little Adams Peak is located outside the tourist town of Ella. Lots of our guests have completed this short hike to see the view.

Ella Rock is a more challenging hike and also is a good thing to do on a day trip from GlenMyu Estate.

Several Stages of the Pekoe Trail are within a car ride from GlenMyu Estate. So you have plenty of opportunities to give your body a different form of exercise.

There are also some unique hikes that are not on the normal tourist trails that are also available if you are up to the challenge.

Use GlenMyu Estate to reenergise before you explore more of this paradise island.

We find that guests underestimate the energy that you need when you travel around Sri Lanka.

The sounds, heat, colour, noise and so on really hit all of your senses and can be quite draining. Getting up early to see the sights so you can avoid the intensity of the tropical heat is tiring itself. 

As the temperature at GlenMyu Estate is more akin to a good summer in the UK we find guests getting out of their vehicles and taking sighs of relief. We do not use air conditioners on the estate as it is not required. Some guests get their first good nights sleep when they come to GlenMyu Estate as they have had difficulty sleeping below an air conditioning unit.

Restore your Mind Body and Soul - read what our guest say.

We are very proud of the reviews that our guests write about their stay with us on Google, Booking.com, Airbnb and Tripadvisor.

You should see a theme running through them which hopefully will encourage you to book a stay with us.

A taste of what you will experience at GlenMyu Estate.

Find out more at our website and contact us directly by WhatsApp for direct booking rates.

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A garden tour for guests at GlenMyu Estate

A walk around the garden

A walk around the garden

One of the many highlights of staying at GlenMyu Estate Hotel is walking around the garden on the five acre estate.
It’s a healthy and revitalising experience and allows you to get a little bit closer to nature.

We have worked with nature in our attempts to provide an environment where guests can feel like they are away from it all. However, GlenMyu Estate is located close enough to great sightseeing around Ella 9i.25 hrs drive), Horton Plains National Park, Lipton’s Seat and more.

The garden is naturally an ongoing project and we are constantly making improvements to enhance our guests experience whilst creating an environment suitable for flora and fauna.

Do we know what we are doing?

We are not experienced gardeners and we believe the beauty of the landscape is as a result of trying something, making a mistake and then trying something different. Nature really has educated us letting us know what plant is suitable for each location around the estate.

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A short history of GlenMyu Estate

Ru purchased the five acres of overgrown land in 2006. We had a brief look at part of the land we could access and Ru just decided to gamble and go ahead with the purchase. Having some streams delivering water and an electricity connection was enough to start with.

The land had been part of the much larger Viharaghalla Tea estate. It was divided and a previous owner used it to cultivate sugar cane. We understand when the government decided to start importing cheap sugar cane the estate was no longer viable. It was left unused for many years apart from the monkeys that enjoyed the fruits from some of the trees, something that they still enjoy today.

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When my wife and I visited the land it was drizzling and it was impossible to navigate around the estate without proper gear and machete to drive a pathway. 

A caretaker with little work to do.

A caretaker looked after the estate whilst we lived in London however, he was just tasked with securing the estate rather than do much work. He grew some vegetables and spices for his own use. Guinea Grass, which was growing wildly over the estate was cut and used for cattle feed. Sticks were cut from broken tree branches and sold to local villagers for firewood. He managed to supplement his income and we were happy with the situation.

When we visited Sri Lanka annually we would come to the land and he would clear a pathway or two so that we could explore a little bit more of the area.

As the grass was very long we were terrified as leeches jumped on us for a quick meal! Fortunately for visitors today they will only meet the occasional leeches on rainier parts of the year as we have cut the grass on the pathways quite short. There are also several concrete pathways creating a safe environment accessing the house.

I was amazed to see coffee growing wild on the land. There were also small but very sweet tomatoes growing in different places. There were some Jackfruit Trees and Mango Trees that had already been established. Some large Mara Trees (Para Mara – Albizia saman f.muell.) and also Kithul Trees (Caryota urens) scattered around the land. Most of the land was wild and really difficult to navigate so I limited my exploration.

Now - what a change!

Roll forward to 2018 and we were based at the land and decided that we would start clearing some of the jungle and make some pathways so that we could get around.

Between 2018 and 2021, when we completed and moved into the house at GlenMyu Estate, there was a substantial amount of work done. We were on site all the time and therefore managed to do something everyday. 

Events that we were not in control of meant that we were not in a rush. The Easter bombings and then the global Covid-19 pandemic resulted in very few tourists visiting the island and therefore we had time on our hands.

Now we feel that by not racing to finish the landscaping, so we could open GlenMyu Estate Hotel earlier, we have a much better offering for guests. We also think that nature would have let us know quite quickly if we had tried to force things.

Pathways so that you can explore the land.

Once you have parked at the drive in front of the house you will be met by the lawn which is surrounded by trees and flowers. We have two different types of Jackfruit Tree on either side of the lawn and we harvest the Jackfruit and use them in dishes for our guests. A Pulled Jackfruit Burger or a Jackfruit Curry are popular with our guests. They love that the farm to fork is almost as short as you can get it!

We had more flowers around the lawn but the introduction of our rescue cow to the Estate has meant that the area has been trimmed! Maali appears to enjoy the buffet we put on for her. You can read more about our rescue cow in the following article “We got a Cow!”.

Walking to the Natural Spring Fed Infinity Swimming Pool.

A pathway and steps takes you to our swimming pool. It’s fed from a spring and is a great place to refresh yourself after a day of exploration of the sights near to the hotel. We love day trips to the montane cloud forest at Horton Plains National Park. 

A trip to Upper Diyaluma Waterfall is a special way to spend a day. Lipton’s Seat, Adisham Bungalow and Bambarakanda Waterfall are also within an hours drive. Ella Town is also around an hours drive and a day trip to visit Nine Arch Bridge, Ravana Waterfall, Mini Adams Peak or Ella Rock are other great day trips.

At the swimming pool you can look across the stream to our interpretation of Lombard Street. This is currently under development and you can read more about our plans in the following article.

Around the house.

There is a grass pathway which takes you in a loop around the front of the house and you can enjoy some seating in a quiet place on the estate where all you see and hear is nature.

You will see some colourful flowers such as coleus and hibiscus withe red petals. Ru often makes a hibiscus and ginger tea for our guests.

Climbing up the steps back to the house you will then find a pathway alongside the lawn where we grow some basil, mint and peppermint (also great as a tea).

Towards the terraces.

On your walk towards the terraces you will come across two varieties of mandarin trees, some lemon trees and papaya trees. Papaya grows quite well n the estate and is a regular offering at breakfast.

You might meet some of our ducks bathing in the ponds as you climb up the steps. We have several varieties of bananas growing on the estate some of which you will see on the left hand side. More banana trees will greet you when you climb the steps and then looking to the right you will see our mandarin orchard. There are lots of other fruits and vegetables that we grow on the terraces and Ru will be happy to tell you when we have growing at the time.

Vanilla Time!

As you climb the steps back up to the main driveway you will see vanilla vines wrapped around the trees. Ru has to hand pollinate the vanilla every morning before 10 am when they are in flower. We use the vanilla and some of our duck or chicken eggs to make our vanilla ice cream.

Looking back to from where we have climbed you can see our Mandarin orange orchard, Areca nut trees and Banana trees.

At the road you will come across more lemon trees (we use a lot!) and you will also see an Avocado Tree. When it is avocado season we are in heaven!

Walking across towards our vegetable garden you will come across some pomegranate trees and some luffa vines. We harvest the luffa and make loofah sponges which are used in the kitchen and bathrooms.

The Vegetable Garden.

We have recently constructed two greenhouses where we grow tomatoes and many other items. GlenMyu Estate’s gardens are fully organic so we don’t use any chemicals to keep pests away. Ru can tell you about what else we have growing in the vegetable garden.

Crossing the wooden bridge

When you have crossed the stream over the wooden bridge you can see more banana trees. Above this area is our pepper and cinnamon forests. They are quite young at the moment and therefore we won’t get a harvest for some years. 

Climbing up the hill on the grass pathway to Whale Rock you will see our clove orchard on the left. The trees are coming on well and we expect blossoms to come in the coming two to three years. According to our research the best harvest is normally between fifteen and twenty years old so we have a while to go!

A dead end - at the moment.

Near to whale rock you will see several avocado, jackfruit and mango trees which I have planted from seed. As these trees are located far from the house we do not expect to be able to eat any of the harvest from these trees and they will be food for the birds and animals that visit the estate.

At the moment we have yet to complete the pathway which will allow you to complete a loop around the perimeter of the land. We will update this article when it has been completed.

Walking back down towards the pool you will come across lots of mulberry plants, the berries of which we harvest every morning (if the birds don’t get there first!).

After you walk around the garden perhaps a refreshing dip in the pool is the order of the day.

A lot more to see on your walk around the garden.

There are lots of items that we have planted that I have not mentioned in this article and they are there for you to discover. Some plants are new to me and therefore taking a tour with Ru will provide you with a more details explanation of what we have in the garden.

If Ru is busy and you get the second class tour hosted by yours truly – I will do my best!

Stay at GlenMyu Estate to explore the Sri Lankan Hill Country

A stay at GlenMyu Estate as you explore the Sri Lankan Hill Country and see sights like Horton Plains National Park is a unique experience.

We only have three bedrooms and you will need to book early during the peak holiday season.

The estate is usually within an hours drive of the major sightseeing locations such as Nine Arch Bridge, Ella Town, Upper Diyaluma Waterfall, Lipton’s Seat, Bambarakanda Waterfall and many more,

GlenMyu Estate is listed on Booking.com and Airbnb.
Contact us by the WhatsApp button on our website for direct booking rates.

A walk around the garden Read More »

Garden tours around GlenMyu Estate

Garden Tour

Garden Tour around GlenMyu Estate

At GlenMyu Estate we find that one of the highlights for our guests is to enjoy a relaxed and informal garden tour around the 5 acre estate.

We are continuously landscaping parts of the estate and we see it as a forever work in progress. It’s enjoyable experimenting with different fruits, vegetables, spices, trees and other plants to see what works in different areas around the land.

Our aim is to reinstate many endemic plants and trees in conjunction with developing a fruit forest. We want to encourage more wildlife to come and live and forage on the land.

Guests enjoying the garden at GlenMyu Estate.

The fruits, vegetables and spices that we grow on the estate are used as ingredients for the dishes Ru serves to our guests. You will see that we have planted all around the 5 acre estate so that the wildlife can eat some of the produce in a peaceful environment.

It’s amazing how quickly some of the plants grow and some of our Avocado, Jackfruit, Clove and  Mango trees have been established over a few years.

We have made pathways around the estate which makes it safe and easy to walk and enjoy the surroundings. There are part of the land which are quite steep so you can get a bit of a workout on your walk during your garden tour.
There are several places to sit, rest and enjoy the surroundings whilst listening to nature provide its’ background music.

A little bit of history to the Land.

GlenMyu Estate was originally part of the much larger Viharaghalla Tea estate and our 5 acres was abandoned many years ago. It was subsequently used as a sugar cane estate. We understand that this ceased when the government started importing cheaper sugar cane making it unviable enterprise for a previous owner of the land.

A lot has changed.

The current owner, Ru (my wife), bought the land almost 20 years ago. It was a real gamble as we could not navigate the 5 acres as it was totally overgrown. It was also raining when we viewed the property and, unprepared for rain, we only ventured in around 200 metres.
Despite not seeing much of the property, the decision was made to go ahead with the purchase, at least to get a foothold in the area.

Although we looked for other lands to buy around the country, something kept bringing us back to Beragala. We eventually fell in love with the area and the search for something better was over.

If you saw the land, overgrown with Guinea Grass (used as cow fodder) and looking like a jungle, you may well have asked “What have you done”.
However Ru felt that the climate, the availability of water and electricity was at least something positive about the land.

There were some large established trees on the land also which were regularly used by monkeys as their playground.

The Climate

What I love about GlenMyu Estate and this little piece of the Hill Country is the climate. Sri Lanka doesn’t have seasons like were experienced in Europe, however it does have 2 monsoon seasons. 

Fortunately for GlenMyu Estate, we are located in a place where we don’t experience the full wrath of either monsoon and are in the Inter-Monsoon area.

It you visit one of the many weather websites you can see that Beragala or Viharagala has an average annual temperature in of 21.3 °C (70.4 °F). The annual rainfall is 1652 mm ( 65.0 inch).

You can see the weather forecast for Beragala at Meteologix or for Viharagala at JustWeather.

Why I love it at GlenMyu Estate!

For me, most of the year is like a reasonable English Summer and I can be in shorts and a t-shirt all year round. We do have some rainier periods (Mid-April until Mid-June and Mid-September until Mid-December) which helps with the garden and the planting we do. 

Climate change however, appears to have had some affect on the normal wetter and drier periods and we can never be certain when the weather will change.

Developing the garden

My wife and I don’t have much experience of developing a garden. And, we certainly didn’t think we were capable of making something that would be of such interest to our guests.

Fortunately, along with the internet and a few books, we have some wonderful neighbours who held our hands part of the way. Some of our neighbours have been living in the area for 40 years, some are botanists and some have developed forests. We fell we are very lucky to have such an abundance of resources and knowledge locally.

The Plant Nurseries (both private and government run) have also been very helpful in providing advice.
There is also a great Ayurvedic Plant Nursery in Haldumulla who supplied many of the endemic plants we are re-introducing to the land.

Also, you will find that the older generation of Sri Lankans have a good knowledge of plants, where they grow and what benefits (including medicinal) they have.

Sometimes nature tells you what you can plant by establishing certain types of trees and plants in the land. We have learnt by trying something in one place and mother nature lets us know whether it will work or not.

Protecting the top soil and securing the slope

As we are in the hill country and there are periods where the rain can be heavy there can be small land slips. One of the most important things we have done is to secure the slopes by planting trees to ensure that the ground has a strong foothold.
One of our neighbours alerted us to creating hedgerows on the land along contour lines which helps stabilise the land.
You can read more about SALT technology on this article by International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) 

What will you see on the garden tour at GlenMyu Estate?

Well, that depends on who is taking you on our garden tour!
If I take you I always say to guests that you get the second class tour!
The reason being is that my wife has planned and planted most of the garden (with help from the staff off course!).
Therefore, my knowledge is quite a bit less and although I am learning, I’m sure that there are things that I miss.

Ru showing some guest around the garden close to the Pomelo Tree.

My wife, Ru, normally picks salad leaves and other vegetables and fruits from the garden and sometimes includes this as part of her tour. I stay well away from the vegetable garden – it’s her domain!

Here are just some of the fruits, vegetables and spices that you will see on the tour of the garden. (There are many more but Ru will let you know!).

Vegetables
Yams, Jackfruit, Avocado, Lettuce, Cucumbers, Spring Onions, Tomatoes

Spices
Cloves, Cardamon, Cinnamon, Curry Leaf, pepper, coffee, 

Fruits
Papayas, Bananas, Mandarin Oranges, Lemons, Mangos, Pomello, Passionfruit, Giant Passionfruit.

I have planted lots of trees myself since being at GlenMyu Estate . If I eat a good Avocado, Mango or Jackfruit, I normally save the seed and plant it somewhere on the land.
The plan is to eventually grow a fruit first which will be good for us, our guests and the animals that visit the property. We want to encourage more endemic species back to the property by providing an environment where they can thrive. We have already seen lots of Crane Flies (daddy long legs), Fireflies and Butterflies visit the property to eat. Occasionally we will see some deer at parts of the property that have been left for the wildlife.
In future we expect to see a large variety of frogs and birds come to GlenMyu Estate to forage.

You will see on your garden tour that lots of the trees I have planted are far away from the property. Therefore we are unlikely to be able to protect and eat the fruits from these trees and they will be a good source of food for the birds, monkeys and squirrels.

An informal garden tour - Don't expect Kew Gardens!

We offer the gardens tours to guests that stay at GlenMyu Estate and it is a relaxed and informal wander around the garden. It’s not a formal garden tour by a botanist or student of  the subject. Both Ru and I are enthusiastic and interested in what we are developing on the estate and I’m sure that this will come through on the tour.

I look at our garden tour as similar to our cooking demonstrations – relaxed and informal …. and a bit of fun.

Find out more about a stay in the Sri Lankan Hill Country

If you want to find out more about a stay at GlenMyu Estate please visit our website.

You will also find us on YouTube, Instagram and Facebook (Meta!).

You can readout reviews on Google, Booking.com, Airbnb and Tripadvisor.

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The House at GlenMyu Estate, Hotel and Bed & Breakfast, Haputale, Sri Lanka.

Ayurveda in the Sri Lankan Hills.

Ayurveda in the Sri Lankan Hill Country - developing an Ayurvedic Garden.

When my wife purchased the 5 acres estate in Viharagalla, which she later named GlenMyu, it had been uncultivated for many years. 

Historically it had been part of the larger Viharagalla tea estate and then used to grow sugar cane.

The land had become overrun by Guinea Grass which was brought in to the country as a fast growing foodstock for cattle. Unfortunately Guinea Grass is invasive and dominates local endemic species of plants and the land was in a poor state. 

The House at GlenMyu Estate, Hotel and Bed & Breakfast, Haputale, Sri Lanka.

Lots and lots and lots of work.

There were however, several trees and shrubs that had managed to compete with the invasive grass and there were Jackfruit, Avocado, Coffee, Pepper and Cinnamon growing wild on the land.

Our priority was to build a property for ourselves so we could then develop the estate growing fruits and vegetables for our own consumption.

The Kitchen Garden

We did build a kitchen garden close to the original shack that was on the property and started growing some vegetables early on. Little did we realise that we would be fighting a battle with a host of creatures that wanted to eat our crops. 

Monkeys, Wild Boar, Parrots, Bulbuls, Porcupine and an array of insects were challenges to our wish to eat wholesome locally grown organic food.

No drugs, no chemicals, just relying on Mother Nature (and a bit of hard work).

It took some time to protect the vegetable garden and work out what chemical free pest control would keep the insects away. Our steadily increasing collection of orphan dogs were an unexpected part of the solution guarding the land from would be diners.

The estate at GlenMyu is around 100 metres in elevation from top to bottom and the farming practices in the past had made the land vulnerable to erosion. It was essential that we secured the land so whatever we built did not end up at the bottom of the hill. 

Neighbours who had restored and maintained their properties were really helpful in giving advice on how to manage and secure the land which we remain truly thankful.

We started planting a variety of trees around the land, ensuring that we had diversity and included a mixture if wood and fruit trees which would lead to a greater level of biodiversity and encourage wildlife to feed and live in security at the estate.

We also contacted to local agricultural department and sourced a variety of trees and plants through them including clove trees, cinnamon and ginger.

Fast Forward Three Years.

Fast forward almost three years since we started developing GlenMyu we visited the Ayurvedic Plant Nursery in Bathgoda which is located around six kilometres away.

We went to purchase a few plants to add some local diversity around the estate with a view to learning about this ancient art and eventually developing an Ayurvedic Garden which would be interesting for visitors to the estate. 

We were still getting a bit of unseasonal rain in July which us normally the start of the dry season here in the hills and therefore we though we would make the best of the opportunity and establish some plants in some of the areas we had recently cleared of Guinea Grass. 

A larger than expected purchase.

We ended up purchasing over 180 plants and therefore we were committed to the cause. Fortunately we had a night of rain and therefore we could start planting straight away.

My wife knew some of the plants we purchased and some would need research before being sunk into the ground. These plants will be planted around the land and add diversity to the plant stock we have and it will be interesting to see how they develop in their new environment.

The site for our Ayurvedic Garden for visitors is in the process of being cleared and made ready for planting and therefore is a project which will be developed later in 2021. We plan to have a variety of Ayurvedic plants that will be interesting but relevant to our guests and therefore we will be doing a lot of research and preparation during the latter half of the year to ensure we have another place of interest and place to relax with nature on the estate. 

The 180 Ayurvedic plants that we purchased are already in the ground which will give visitors a wide variety of species to look at and also provide diversity around the Estate.

Oh No - we need more plants.

It looks like we will be visiting the Ayurvedic Nursery a little later this year again to plant in our Ayurvedic Garden – I wonder how many plants we will purchase on that trip and whether we will break 180 again!

Where is GlenMyu Estate, Hotel, B & B located?

Ayurveda in the Sri Lankan Hills. Read More »

GlenMyu Estate
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