Tree Survey of Calthorpe Park

06/06/2017 at 1:51 pm | Posted in Air pollution, Trees | Leave a comment

Can you help us ?
We are looking for local people to
• Learn about different kinds of trees and how to recognise them,
• Help us to make a map of the trees in the park,
• Suggest trees that could be planted in the park in future.

Saturday 17th June 2017

Meet 2pm at Calthorpe Wellbeing Hub, Edward Road corner Cheddar Road limited car & cycle parking, bus 35 or 45
This activity organised by Balsall Heath Is Our Planet and Birmingham Trees for Life. Please let us know if you are coming. Reply to bhiop@jericho.org.uk John Newson 0121 647 1960
Not suitable for small children

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Oranges and Lemons

02/05/2017 at 2:19 pm | Posted in Food, Gardens, Trees | Leave a comment
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People were delighted to see citrus fruit growing on bushes for sale at the Community Garden Centre in Balsall Heath at a Grow It weekend, which took place over 29th and 30th April. The event was supported by Balsall Heath Is Our Planet and 175 people attended.

“We are trying to stock some more unusual fruit and vegetables, as well as flowers”. Said Sanjay who works there. “Gardeners may like to try them out, given that they have already been given a flying start”.

The community garden centre supports the work of Balsall Heath Forum. It is open every day, being located at 82 St Pauls Road, close to Ladypool Road, tel 0121 446 6183. They offer local delivery.

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Bulb Planting at Pocket Park

22/11/2016 at 1:48 pm | Posted in Gardens, Trees, Walking, Wildlife | Leave a comment
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Thanks very much to everyone who turned out to help with community bulb planting at the Pocket Park in Balsall Heath on 17th November. I would say that 15 people contributed at some point. Volunteers were there from Balsall Heath Forum, St Paul’s Trust and school, also the Jericho Foundation. One man even saw us out of his house and came over to help. We got 150 bulbs of daffodil, crocus, snowdrop, iris, tulip planted, and these should make a colourful display next spring and summer, and for years to come. I notice that either no-one seems to drop litter there, or others are picking it up and putting in the bin..

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Sun Shines on Pocket Park

07/11/2016 at 1:42 pm | Posted in Gardens, Trees, Walking, Wildlife | Leave a comment
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The Pocket Park in the centre of Balsall Heath is providing a place to sit and enjoy the last autumn sunshine. The benches were made from recycled timber by Jericho Foundation. The design aims to make a better environment for pedestrians and was opened by Councillor Tony Kennedy on 20 October.
Previous posts about this project are here

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Thanks for Pocket Park

24/10/2016 at 1:10 pm | Posted in Trees, Walking, Wildlife | Leave a comment
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Balsall Heath’s new Pocket Park was officially declared open on Thursday 20 October in a ceremony which had Councillor Tony Kennedy cut the ribbon. Jericho Landscape’s team rushed to finish the work and welcome us all in. Abdullah Rehman representing Balsall Heath Forum said it was an example of people working together from across the community. It was nice to see 40 people gathered, including pupils from Redstone Academy and staff from the Little Care Bearz nursery, who are neighbours and supporters. A grant was received by Balsall Heath Forum for the work by the government’s Department of Communities and Local Government. Birmingham Highways Department is the landholder and will continue to maintain the site.
Let’s look after our Pocket Park!
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Let’s Enjoy our Front Gardens

05/05/2016 at 11:05 am | Posted in Gardens, Trees, Water, Wildlife | Leave a comment

In spring and summer the front gardens of Balsall Heath offer beautiful colour to our streets. So, a big thank you to all the gardeners. Sadly many houses have tarmacked or slabbed entirely, to park cars on. This adds to drainage problems because the drains cannot cope with sudden rain that no longer sinks into the ground. Without any shade the streets will get very hot, and we still remember the damage of the Birmingham Tornado which was triggered in July 2005 by the high temperatures.
Fortunately there are alternative surfaces that allow people to park their cars, but still have a surface that drains and also looks good. The Moseley Society website has provided some good advice
“The law now requires you to seek planning permission if you wish to lay impermeable driveways of more than five square metres that do not provide for the water to run to a permeable area. However you will not need planning permission if a new or replacement driveway of any size uses permeable (or porous) gravel, permeable concrete block paving or porous asphalt, or if the rainwater is directed to a lawn or border to drain naturally. The Government has produced an excellent Guide on the Permeable Surfacing of Front Gardens explaining how this can be done link here
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Using fallen leaves

04/11/2015 at 1:19 pm | Posted in Gardens, Trees | Leave a comment
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Following on from the recent composting demonstration at Digbeth Community Garden, I was asked to help Balsall Heath Church Centre to do something useful with their many bags of fallen leaves that they were unable to transport to the council tip. We agreed that leaves are mostly air and water and are best broken down on site. A composting system is being planned that should be able to deal with all the garden waste they have in future.
Now that Birmingham City Council no longer collects garden waste free I have read that 11,000 tonnes less is being given to them, so gardeners do seem to be remembering how to compost waste themselves. It is cheaper to buy a compost bin than to pay the council to collect for a year and compost bins for £20 area available from GetComposting
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A Wildlife Walk in the Park

25/08/2015 at 1:47 pm | Posted in Trees, Walking, Wildlife | Leave a comment
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On Thursday 27th August 2015 we shall be having a Wildlife Walk in Cannon Hill Park, led by the park rangers. This is in partnership with the Bright Future Association, which has many members in the Balsall Heath area, so we meet at 12.00 at Calthorpe Park Centre and walk to the park. We hope to explore some wilder or more natural areas, as an alternative to the fair and ice creams. What plants and animals can we find living in the park? A Treasure Hunt to search for objects from nature will be organised after a picnic lunch, then walk back together.. All ages are welcome, but children must be accompanied by a responsible adult. Meeting place Calthorpe

Tree Hunt at the Carnival

03/07/2015 at 3:07 pm | Posted in Trees | Leave a comment
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Residents at the Balsall Heath Carnival will be able to join a hunt for 7 different kinds of trees growing in Pickwick Park, the Carnival site beside St Paul’s Road. The event starts at 12.00 on Saturday 4th July. Looks like it will be scorching, so what better than to admire some cool and shady trees? Our neighbourhood would be even hotter and more polluted without all the trees that have been planted over the last 30 years.
See you at the BHIOP stall. John Newson

We met the Trees

15/06/2015 at 10:10 am | Posted in Trees | Leave a comment
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Of Balsall Heath And learned their names and how to recognise them
Meet the Trees

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