Category: News

Busy day at Norman Chamberlain Playing Fields.

Today we returned to Norman Chamberlain playing fields to plant some much smaller saplings than those we planted  last Saturday….but there were 1500 of them!

Luckily, we had many hands to make light work of the planting as we were joined on site by pupils from Tile Cross Academy and Dame Elizabeth Cadbury school plus volunteers from HSBC,    Shah Satnum Ji Green S Welfare Force and staff from the Woodland Trust. Add to that the 3 BTFL staff and 2 of our committee plus the Woodland Team (who had already done all the preparation)…..and we were done in just over an hour. Amazing !













First of all we had to make sure that everyone had good instructions as to their role and how to make sure they carried it out safely…….but even more importantly, we needed to make sure we fed and watered them all at the end!  Our thanks to Green S Welfare Force for supplementing our lunch with some very tasty extras. Follow this link to see us all at work.


Sponsor and plant ‘Trees for Life’ with BTFL this March

This year’s annual ‘Family and Friends’ sponsors’ tree planting event will be at the Lickey Hills on Saturday 23rd March. You can sponsor tree planting in memory of a loved one, or to celebrate or commemorate a family occasion – or just for fun!  Planting trees is a lovely way for the family to remember a loved one, and we’ve had marriages, births, birthdays and engagements celebrated too.

Sponsorship starts at £25. You can find out how to do this on the ‘individual sponsorship’ page of this website – just follow the instructions!  If you would like to come to the event on the 23rd, please make sure your sponsorship form and money is with us by 14th March.

Sunshine for planting at Shenley Fields.

What more could you want? Amazing weather, enthusiastic children and helpful volunteers.

A mixed age group of pupils from Our Lady and St Rose of Lima Catholic Primary school, assisted by staff from Deutsche Bank Birmingham, made short work of planting 10 beautiful new ornamental trees around the edge of Shenley Fields Recreation Ground. The trees are part of a plan to replace some elderly poplar trees that have had to be removed.

Our thanks must go as well to the two Councillors that worked really hard alongside everyone and also the Woodland Team, who do the majority of the hard digging. Follow this link to more photos


Hearts all round!

You may notice from our photo album today that lots of the pupils and adults are holding green hearts. This is part of a wider project to get people to think of what they love about the environment and how they feel at this time, and in this case their experience of planting trees with BTFL. The words are their own………….some of the pupils words are very thoughtful. Thank you everyone for taking part!

Shout out for Teachers !

I feel I need to ‘shout out’ for Teachers everywhere. There is a school of thought that they go home and finish work at 3.30,…. but BTFL have to say that we have seen many indications recently that their days are getting longer and longer with the advent of the ‘Smart Phone’!!

I used to e mail teachers at tea time and expect a reply maybe the next working day. Now it is becoming the norm to receive a reply in the evening or late at night! When I question them, they all reply that they have to deal with a huge amount of work…..including catching up on e mails, in their evenings and weekends.

Can we offer our thanks to them for taking the time to deal with our requests for school involvement- as it would be very easy for them not to bother!!

Corporate volunteers and local pupils work together at Glebe Farm.

This morning the whole of Glebe Farm Recreation Ground was a sea of frost……..but the sun was glorious and the sky was blue.

Year 4 pupils from Audley Primary school were assisted on site by staff from HSBC and Selfridges (Birmingham) as they worked side by side to plant 1000 young trees. Today we were also joined by the Woodland Trust, a local Councillor and a representative of the Friends of the Kingfisher Project. Unfortunately the early sun changed to low cloud and temperatures dropped, but not before all the trees were planted and it was time for a warming drink. The pupils promised to keep an eye on the planting and local residents popped by to offer their support….what more could we want? Well done everyone. Lots of great photos via this link.







Our thanks again to Birmingham City Council’s Woodland Team, who we rely on for ground preparation and transportation of trees and spades. We couldn’t do it without them!

Plant a tree for the birds in your garden!

All gardens should have at least one tree!

This weekend is the RSPB Big Garden Birdwatch.  It’s the world’s largest wildlife survey and everyone can take part.  I’ve just done mine by sitting at my lounge window looking at the birds visiting our garden for an hour (a pleasure in itself!).  And in my average sized urban garden (only about 6 miles from the centre of Birmingham), I recorded 14 different species including a woodpecker, a black cap and a wren.

We all need to provide habitats for birds and other wildlife in our urban gardens, and trees are an important feature as they provide both food and shelter.  You might think your garden is too small for a tree, but there are many varieties bred specifically to remain small enough to fit perfectly into small urban gardens, such as rowan, flowering cherry, hawthorn and crab apple – all have blossom for bees and fruit for birds, as well as providing beautiful colour for us to enjoy.

So why not make it your mission this winter to plant a small tree in your garden – the tree and the wildlife it brings in will give you and your family much pleasure throughout the year!