It turns out there are 1167 “tree pits” in Snaresbrook Ward, and the rush is on for residents to claim their nearest one before a team of weed-killer wielding operatives do their rounds.
It sounds dramatic – but the effort is part of a plan to get people to look after their nearest tree, plant the “pit” with wild flowers, and help encourage bees this summer. The scheme, being run by Wanstead and Woodford Friends of the Earth with backing from Redbridge and the Olympic Legacy fund, will offer advice and even free seeds if people need them.
But time is tight – once the council does its annual weedkilling rounds in early April, hopes of planting anything successfully will shrivel up and die. So there are some easy steps:
1. See if you are in Snaresbrook (map below) and if you are, choose your tree.
2. Ring the Redbridge tree folk on 020Â 8708 5325 and tell them who you are and where your desired tree is.
4. Book a free ticket for a showing of pro-bee film More Than Honey at Wanstead Library on 25 April. Get in contact with Friends of the Earth and, if you can, volunteer to help (leafletting, organising etc).
5. Take a tree selfie. Pose with your tree pit in its unplanted state. This will be useful later on when Wansteadium celebrates the best pits in town.
6. Do your planting, but beware of sudden beards.