From Acorns to Trees, from Queens Park to Varndean

Recently I went to visit the newly planted grove of trees at Varndean School Brighton. This is the culmination of a three-year Nuts for the Trees project led by me and Poppy, our Branch Manager. Our idea was for children and adults to plant acorns and other seeds and nuts in recycled pots, to grow them for two or three years and finally plant out the surviving trees into woods. It was perhaps an act of faith that we would find somewhere to plant the saplings; but I always felt that once we had them, people with appropriate land would take an interest.

Varndean has been a special project between the school where Poppy and I work, Queens Park Primary and Varndean Secondary school. Children from the primary school would take the trees they had helped to grow and plant them in their new secondary school.

I must admit to being a bit apprehensive when I made my visit with Poppy to see the trees in their new home; would they all have died? Not to worry, the trees have been well looked after and we have had plenty of rain over the summer holidays – the trees looked fabulous all green and showing new shoots!  I do expect some trees to die in the long run, but we can replant if this happens. I think one of the issues with tree planting is care and attention over the following years. Some projects don’t go past the planting stage and the trees die later on. We are determined this won’t happen at Varndean.

So there you have it, from children planting acorns to a grove of trees outside a school. We have plans for more planting this year and we will carry on with gathering nuts for future projects.  

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