Tag: rain

If Only BTfL Could Bottle The Enthusiasm For Trees At Our Planting Events!

Well we had scorned the wet weather, then we hoped for better weather, then we got dry weather! The seemingly endless rain had blighted some of our previous planting plans – but not today and the lovely sunshine got us back out where we belong – outside, planting trees.

Not only did we combat the mud to plant 1000 whips at Sycamore Recreation Ground along the River Cole we did it with 26 super-enthusiastic children from Waverley Junior School and four members of school staff, along with 40 wonderful volunteers, six from Lloyds Bank, six from HSBC UK, seven from HMRC, nine from the West Midlands Combined Authority, five Birmingham University, and seven from the Green Welfare Force. We were also joined by the BBC Radio Four Open Country radio show that recorded a programme about our urban tree planting – great company, we know!

After much anticipation, the sodden ground was sodden, but not so sodden it stopped us in our tracks! After the dedicated Woodland team had mole ploughed along the Recreation Ground we all took our spades and grabbed a handful of whips and in pairs planted, a soon to be beautiful woodland.

The reason the woodland is being planted is to improve the environment for the local community, improve the city’s tree canopy cover and reduce flooding on the recreation ground which is a flood plain. Only a few weeks ago the area was like a small lake due to the amount of rain that had fallen. Denying footie matches, dog walking, jogging, walking, kick abouts’, pondering, games of tag and nature trails.

       

Many of the children from the Waverley school group use the recreation ground regularly and they showed so much enthusiasm we wondered how we might be able to bottle it. Led by a wonderful team of four school staff members, in pairs the children began, in earnest to plant.  ‘I love being outside it makes me so happy to be doing this,’ said Atif a wonderful year four student working hard with his spade in hand. ‘I know when we plant these trees were leaving a positive mark on our community and our environment.’

Another student, Aisha remarked, it’s good to be outside in groups.’ Pointing to Atik, Aisha said, ‘we are in the same class and never talk to each other, but out here working together we are getting to know each other which is a nice thing to do.’ Aisha is right. We always consider every tree planting we undertake as a social occasion where a dynamic mix of different people get together and share a wonderfully productive hour or two!

The children were eager to point north, east, south and west, exclaiming that they lived one road away, around the corner, up the road from where we had planted this wonderful woodland. Some of the children were eager to let their friends and family know that they had planted trees today. ‘When I tell my sister that I’ve help plant 1000 trees today she won’t believe me because that’s huge!’ one beaming student explained.

     

All our volunteers worked with the children and by their huge grins we knew they were enjoying themselves, ‘it’ so good to get out in the fresh air…, what a lovely way to spend a morning…, when can we do this again…?’

We love it when our volunteers exude so much passion for this wonderful cause to make Birmingham greener, then greener and then a little bit more green! And as we all stood proudly for a photo call at the end of the planting everyone shouted trees – not cheese! And as we share in a biscuit and a lovely cup of tea we all chatted excitedly about this tree planting and the next one!

As ever would like to say a huge thank you to everyone that attended. Your company, your enthusiasm, your hard work and your tree planting legacy are never taken for granted. And who knew, getting muddy, pulling muscles we never knew we had, ankle deep in dirt, really can be a whole lot of fun!

Please check out the photo album for this planting, here

A Wet and Wild Time of it with St Ambrose Barlow Catholic Primary School

Rain, Rain go away! Well it didn’t and we didn’t care!

Our second tree planting of the season was done in an almost biblical cascade of rain which didn’t cease for even a second! We planted 10 cherry trees at Newey Goodman Park, Hall Green with 29-year-five school children from St Ambrose Barlow Catholic Primary School who can only be described as Super Eco Warriors!

Did the epic rain shower bother the children – No it didn’t! Lining up in the school hall ready for the off, the children were full of facts and figures about trees and what an important environmental impact trees have. It was clear the children wanted to do their part to save the world, explaining that children love trees and the environment, but some grown-ups just don’t.

Clean wellies, dry coats, perky bobble hats and warm gloves were the wardrobe order of the day. We resigned ourselves with a smile that this wouldn’t be the same by the end of the planting. The children’s enthusiasm was unstoppable and as we made our way to the park one student proudly proclaimed while sopping wet. ‘I will do whatever it takes to plant a tree – and he did – they all did!’ When the children got to the park they were eager to start grabbing spades in unison and marching to their assigned tree. Taking instruction like professionals as they listened to the safety talk.’ In their three’s the children were chattering excitedly.  ‘I come to this park with my Granddad, I can’t wait to show him which tree I planted,’ one enthusiastic student said. Councillor Timothy Huxtable, from Hall Green South accompanied us to the planting too. Filling in the holes while keeping these soon to be beautiful cherry trees’ standing up straight in the very muddy mud!

It’s hard to imagine in the wind and rain that these cherry trees will soon be blossoming beautifully in a few summers from now. Mud is something children love and all we could hear was laughter and giggling as it got muddier and muddier and the children got grubbier!


By the end of the planting 10 cheery trees stood proudly in the park, the children were full of smiles as we had our group photo taken. Wellies caked in mud and bobble hats decidedly damp and droopy, the children marched back to school feeling good about their morning’s work. The children were proud of their achievements, despite the weather and were eager to get back to school and share their wet and wild experience with BTfL with the rest of the school.

We would like to at a huge thank you to St Ambrose Barlow Catholic Primary School for their amazing efforts, their enthusiasm was catching. It’ not often we have to work in weather like that and we are just thankful we had such inspiring eco-heroes to help us!

 

To view more photos from this event, please click here