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May 2018

In this month’s newsletter:

  • resubscribe

  • going vegan

  • allotment update

  • Charter Fair

  • dawn chorus

  • repair cafes

  • summer barbecue

  • month of the magnolia

 

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Going vegan at May green drinks

Why and how to be a vegan – an informal talk by Joyce D’Silva, who has been a vegan for 43 years. 8.00pm Thursday 3 May 2018 at The Mill, Liphook Rd, Haslemere GU27 3QE

Allotment happenings

Nature is bursting into life with force after the recent sunny and wet weather. We have planted a plum tree, sowed wild flowers (last season the wildflower area was a great success), cleared the remainder of last year’s spinach and kale (amazing how plants keep producing food), and we have enjoyed the sun.

We are continuing with the usual meeting times Thursday 1pm – 3pm and Saturday 10am – 12noon. You can use this link to sign up for allotment updates.

Plants and books at the Charter Fair

We will be at the farmers’ market on Sunday 6 May and at the Charter Fair on Monday 7 May, 1-5pm in the town centre, where we will have our secondhand bookstall and have plants for sale.

Dawn chorus

We will be up with the birds on Sunday 6 May to celebrate International Dawn Chorus Day in a wood near Grayswood. We will gather at 4.30am to hear the the birds sing the day into life – and then have coffee and bacon butties round a campfire. To join us please email info@transitionhaslemere.org for directions.

As John Lewis-Stempel said: “To stand alone in a field in England and listen to the chorus of birds is to remember why life is prescious.”

 

Summer barbecue

A date for your diary is our summer barbecue from 6.30pm on Friday  13 July. We hope you will join us for a convivial evening in the lovely setting of Swan Barn Farm.

Link of the month: Repair cafes

Repair Cafes are meeting places where volunteers fix everyday things to extend their life and avoid creating landfill waste. There are nearly 1,500 repair cafes worldwide so far, including a monthly one in Farnham, where they fix things like clothes, furniture, electrical appliances, bicycles, crockery and toys. You will find more about them here, and the one in Farnham here. We are looking at how we might apply the concept in Haslemere.

Tree corner: Month of the magnolia

April was the month of the magnolia. A number of species flower before their leaves appear, creating grand displays of white tinged with pink or purple. Magnolias were among the earliest flowering trees to evolve; their relatively simple flowers have tepals rather than petals and are designed to attract beetles rather than bees, which they pre-date. Most of the deciduous varieties in Haslemere originate in China and Japan, or are hybrids. The evergreen magnolias around the town are often grandiflora from the United States, and flower later.

April 2018

In this month’s newsletter:

  • small farm film

  • going vegan

  • Spring at the allotment

  • Charter Fair

  • dawn chorus

  • biodiverstiy danger

  • flowering trees

 

People, food and the land – a film

At our April green drinks, we will be showing In Our Hands, a film by The Land Workers’ Alliance – an organisation of people making their livelihoods from producing food, fuel and fibre using sustainable methods. The film tells the story of small producers challenging the need for the industrialisation of food production and the need to maintain the fundamental link between people, food and land. Ed Brooks, local vegetable grower and member of the Alliance, will answer questions after the screening.

We are holding the event in association with St Stephen’s Church – the first church in Haslemere to win an ‘Eco Church’ award.

Thursday 5 April, St Stephen’s Church, Church Road, Haslemere GU27 1NS. Drinks and chat from 7.30pm; the film will start at 8pm. Free. All welcome.

 

Going vegan at May green drinks

Why and how to be a vegan – an informal talk by Joyce D’Silva, who has been a vegan for 43 years. 8.00pm Thursday 3 May 2018 at The Mill, Liphook Rd, Haslemere GU27 3QE

Spring at our allotment

Spring has arrived after some very cold spells, and birds, bees and even

butterflies have emerged and are looking lively. As the ground warms up we

will be getting back to work on the Transition Allotment. There is plenty

to do, both in the way of getting ready to plant and construction of the

raised beds. We hope to welcome back last year’s participants, and invite

new members to join us at plot 13A, Collards Lane, on Thursday 5th April at 1pm, or Saturday 7th April at 10 am.

For directions or more information contact info@transitionhaslemere.org

Plants and books at the Charter Fair

Regrettably, we will not be at the farmers’ markets on 1 April. But we will be at the Charter Fair on Monday 7 May, 1-5pm in the town centre, where we will have our secondhand bookstall and have plants for sale.

Dawn chorus

We will be up with the birds on Sunday 6 May to celebrate International Dawn Chorus Day in a wood near Grayswood. More details in next month’s newsletter.

 

Link of the month: Biodiversity in dangerous decline

Biodiversity – the essential variety of life forms on Earth – continues to decline in every region of the world, endangering economies, livelihoods, food security and the quality of life of people everywhere, according to four new landmark science reports. The reports also highlight options to protect and restore nature and its vital contributions to people. You can find the reports here. And a media summary here.

Tree corner: Flowering trees

Over the next couple of months, as trees such as cherry, blackthorn and rowan dazzle us with their showy blossoms, it will be easy to overlook the fact that all trees must flower to propagate as many of our native species do so inconspicuously. This is because they are wind pollinated so have no need of colourful flowers or heady scents to attract insects. Some species, such as hazel, alder and birch, dangle male catkins, but their female flowers are small, or tiny in the case of hazel. Others have flowers that are pale green and unobtrusive and you will have to look closely to find them, such as oak, beech and field maple, or the yew as in in the photo .

March 2018

In this month's newsletter:

  • repair cafe

  • In Our Hands – film

  • vegan talk

  • growing more, losing more trees

  • food production emissions

  • cherry laurel

 

Green drinks

In March, Ed Ram will provide an overview of the Farnham Repair Cafe, which has been running for nearly three years on a monthly basis. The idea is to start a similar operation in our area. The aim is to reduce waste and save resources – and money – by prolonging the life of things and by sharing skills. You can find our more about repair cafes in general here and about Farnham Repair Cafe in particular here. No need to RSVP, just come along, enjoy a drink and a chat about repair cafes and other green things. 7.30pm Thursday 1 March 2018 at the Mill Tavern, Liphook Rd, Linchmere, Haslemere GU27 3QE.

At April green drinks, we will be showing In Our Hands, a film by The Land Workers' Alliance – an organisation of people making their livelihoods from producing food, fuel and fibre using sustainable methods. The film tells the story of small producers challenging the need for the industrialisation of food production and the need to maintain the fundamental link between people, food and land. Ed Brooks, local vegetable grower and member of the Alliance, will answer questions after the screening.
We are holding the event in association with St Stephen's Church – the first church in Haslemere to win an 'Eco Church' award.
Thursday 5 April, St Stephen's Church, Church Road, Haslemere GU27 1NS. Drinks and chat from 7pm; the film will start at 8pm.

May green drinks will feature a discussion on veganism – why and how to be a vegan. 7.30pm Thursday 3 May 2018 at the Mill Tavern

 

Link of the month: We are planting more trees – but not enough

China plans to plant forests the size of Ireland, while Latin American countries have pledged to restore 20 million hectares of degraded forest and African countries more than 100 million hectares. “We are seeing a great global attempt to plant and restore forest land but paradoxically we are still losing tree cover. The rate of global deforestation has slowed by more than half in 25 years but tree loss jumped 50% in 2016, and 2017 is likely to have been worse,” says John Vidal. Read the full article here.
 

Climate data: Food systems emission

Food systems contribute between 19% and 29% of total greenhouse gas emissions. About a third of all food produced is lost in the supply chain. Most losses in low income countries occur at storage, transport and processing levels. Most losses in high income countries occur at retail and consumer levels. More information here.

 

Tree corner: Cherry laurel

 

A constant green throughout the year is the cherry laurel (Prunus laurocerasus). Often simply called laurel, it is actually a member of the cherry family. A native of southeast Europe and southwest Asia, it is most common as a hedging plant around Haslemere where it is favoured for its dense evergreen foliage, vigorous growth and robustness. Left to its own devices it will grow into a small tree 15 metres or more. The flower buds are just appearing at this time of the year and will blossom in early summer in spikes of pretty white flowers. Bees and wasps are often seen crawling around the underside of young leaves in the summer, which can be puzzling as the leaves contain cyanide and give of an almond-like smell if broken. The insects are after the nectar secreted from small glands near the base of the leaves – a common feature with cherries.

February 2018

In this month’s newsletter:

  • green drinks

  • sponsored apple tree

  • allotment workday

  • how to use less plastic

  • 2017 second hottest year

  • dawn redwood

 

Green drinks

We will discuss our plans for the year at February green drinks, including the another series of our successful informal talks. Join us for green chat from 7.30pm Thursday 1 February 2018 at the Mill Tavern, Liphook Rd, Linchmere, Haslemere GU27 3QE.

 

We sponsor an apple tree at Swan Barn

Transition Haslemere sets aside a quarter of the takings we make on selling secondhand books at the monthly farmers’ market to sponsor trees in the National Trust’s restored orchards at Swan Barn. We sponsored our first tree in 2014 and this month we will hand over a cheque for £250 to fund the planting of a new tree. We are in the process of deciding which traditional variety to plant and will announce our decision shortly.

Allotment workday rescheduled

Due to very wet ground conditions and works planned by Thames Water in Collards Lane, we have been obliged to change the date of this activity. The Allotment Workday will now take place on 24th February – weather permitting.

For more information contact info@transitionhaslemere.org

 

Link of the month: How to use less plastic

It was encouraging to hear the Prime Minister talk recently about tackling the ‘scourge’ of plastic waste. Although the Government’s proposed measures are somewhat limited, we can do a lot ourselves to reduce, recycle and reuse plastic in our everyday lives. Here are three websites with tips and guidance on how you can cut your use of plastic

My plastic-free life

Life without Plastic

Plastic Free UK

Climate data: 2017 was the second hottest year

2017 was the second-hottest year on record according to Nasa data. It was also the hottest year without the short-term warming influence of El Niño – a climate phenomenon that occurs every few years when water in the western tropical Pacific Ocean becomes abnormally warm. Remarkably, 2017 was also hotter than 2015, which at the time was by far the hottest year on record thanks in part to a strong El Niño event that year. You can read more about it here.

 

Tree corner: Dawn redwood

 

At this time of the year you can see the elegant outline of the dawn redwood (Metasequoia glyptostroboides), a species originally known in the West only from its Mesozoic-era fossil remains. In 1946, a small stand of surviving trees was discovered in Szechuan province, China, and its seeds were distributed around the world. It is now often found in botanical gardens and increasingly popular in parks and domestic gardens for its feathery fresh green foliage in the Spring and summer, and red-brown colour in the autumn. Unusually for a conifer, and like its near relative the swamp cypress, it is deciduous. There was a dawn redwood in the Haslemere Museum garden, but died a few years ago. A few others, like the one pictured, can be seen in gardens around Haslemere.

January 2018


Happy New Year everyone

In this month’s newsletter:

  • green drinks

  • AGM

  • allotment schedule

  • winter wassailing

  • zero carbon Britain

  • blue Atlas cedar

 

Green drinks

Just a social chat this month – reflecting on the year gone by and looking to the future. From 7.30pm Thursday 4 January 2018 at the Mill Tavern, Liphook Rd, Linchmere, Haslemere GU27 3QE.

AGM

The chair and treasurer will report (briefly) on last year’s activities. We will elect chair, treasurer and other officers for the new year. Then we will make plans for the new year. Please join us, especially if you would like to be more involved in our activities in 2018. 8pm Thursday 18 January at the Mill Tavern.

Allotment winter programme

Time to reflect on last year’s efforts and plan for the new season. Please join us at the following events if you would like to be involved next year.

Thursday 11th January, 13.00 – 15.00 tea/coffee at Dylan’s in Weyhill.

Saturday 27th January, 10.00 – 13.00 allotment work day (with bonfire)

Mid-February, date to be confirmed: visit a special garden (either Sustainability Centre, Winkworth, or Wisley)

For more information contact info@transitionhaslemere.org

 

Winter Wassailing

Join the National Trust for an evening of spirit warding, superstition, and family fun by performing a traditional Wassailing ceremony. They go in procession, carrying flaming torches, to the most venerable apple tree, sing the wassailing song and bang pots ‘n pans to banish evil spirits from its branches, and swig last year’s Wassail Ale as a toast. Under torchlight, everyone makes their way back to have a selection of hot food and drink to purchase and enjoy. Swan Barn Farm, 6-9pm Friday 19 January. Free event. Likely to be muddy.

Free introduction to beekeeping

Keeping bees is the most beneficial thing you can do for the countryside”, says Dave Elliott, National Trust head ranger of Black Down. Interested or need help getting started? Go along to the free beekeeping introductory session run by the Petersfield & District Beekeepers’ Association’s at 2.15—4.30pm, Petersfield Community Centre on Sunday 18th February 2018. For further information contact Morag Crawley on 01730 267168 or annechantal@btinternet.com.

Link of the month: Zero Carbon Britain

CAT’s latest research project, Zero Carbon Britain: Making it Happen, explores the economic, cultural and psychological barriers to achieving net zero greenhouse gas emissions, and sets out the positive, connected approach we need to overcome them – joining up research and practice across disciplines, borders, sectors and scales.

www.zerocarbonbritain.org/en/

Tree corner: Blue Atlas Cedar

At this monochrome time of the year, the Blue Atlas Cedar (Cedrus atlantica var. glauca) adds a touch of pastel colour to the landscape. It is native to the Atlas Mountains of North Africa where it grows in extensive forests. The blue tinge to the soft needles is a cultivated variation. It is often planted as an ornamental tree in gardens, including around Haslemere, and there are some fine specimens by the lake at Winkworth Arboretum in Godalming. The specimen pictured is on the hill above Haslemere station.

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