There are many different factors that impact the growth rate of trees, like climate, soil conditions, competition from other trees, and a few different methods to estimate the age. We had a look at a few different methods today and got a range of estimates. The simplest and easiest for children to do for most broadleaf trees (oak, ash, beech) is based on Mitchell's rule that trees will grow at a rate 1.5 to 2.5cm in circumference per year depending on conditions.
WAOW launches a new Nature Connection Programme in Barnet and Haringey
The funding from the Big Lottery Community Fund – awarded to those who are doing extraordinary things to improve their communities – will support two new arms of the Wild About Our Woods charity which have been developed in direct response to the coronavirus crisis for people in Barnet and Haringey; the Great British Bug Hunt, for those aged 65+, and Nature Connection Activity Packs for children aged 7-11.
The Great British Bug Hunt has been inspired by Kate Evans from Graduate Planet, who created the project in Warwickshire and has kindly allowed it to be replicated for Barnet and Haringey. A 48-page illustrated booklet about nature (illustrated by Rachel Corney), involving everything from crosswords and surveys to general information and beautiful imagery, will be distributed to those ages 65+ who have signed up to the scheme.
Each of the illustrated booklets comes with two plants to encourage hands-on involvement and provide a long-term project for participants, helping not only their individual mental and physical needs but also directly positively contributing to biodiversity corridors to support insects through Barnet and Haringey.
The Nature Connection Activity Packs include instructions on how to make everything from a pinecone hedgehog to a felted wand, providing children with the stimulus to remain connected to nature while encouraging their creativity at home. These craft-based packs will be delivered to foodbanks across Barnet and Haringey, providing six weeks’ worth of activities and accompanying craft materials to 300 children aged 7-11 each week of the summer holidays.
More information on Butterlfies, Bees and flower loving insects
The Butterfly Conservation website
Packed full of great information about how to identify butterflies, recording and monitoring advice as well as tips on gardening for butterflies You can find the list of food plants in your book here If you would prefer to record bees (and other wildlife) on a more ad hoc basis, rather than carrying out the 10 minute surveys then go to the iRecord page. If possible include a photo of the bumblebee that you have seen to allow the iRecord experts to verify your sighting.
The Bumblebee Conservation Trust
If you would like to find more information about bees, the BBCT is a great place to start .
They have a video channel with bee ID tutorials and great bumblebee footage.
Gardening for Bumblebees They also provide some great advice on bumblebee friendly gardening
Here is a link to the ‘Big 7’ common bumblebees poster that's in your pack in case you want to share it with your friends and family, to help them distinguish bees in their gardens. Take a look at their tips on taking identifiable photographs of bumblebees. Recognising bees more easily
If you would like some more information about how to identify different types of bees and wasps, this is a very useful guide Guide to recognising the insect groups you need to count
Getting the younger generation involved
For children wanting to discover more about bees, there is a learning zone which has plenty of fun and educational resources including junior word searches, mazes and craft activities
Finally, there is a Beekind AppApp you can download on a mobile phone or Ipad which scores your garden for ‘bee-friendliness’. You tick which plants and flowers you already have and it will also give you recommendations on what to plant to improve the space for bumblebees
Tottenham Trees have done a fine job in developing six park tree trails on the free TiCL app, as well as a special Tottenham-wide James Joyce tree trail. Using TiCL you'll be able to identify notable trees and other points of interest in the following parks. more details can be found here
Other tree trails can be found across Haringey and can be found here