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The Voice - April 2021

Comment by Geoff

Geoff Juden

The green space we have in the city is always being challenged by a growing population.

However, if we lose our focus on what really matters concerning the health and wellbeing of the entire ecology system, and that includes us, should one part of that system fail, we will all suffer.

The reason for gardening is not that it is a necessity as in the past, but it is to enable us to be a part of nature, offering all its benefits to enjoy a better living environment.

If you value having someone campaign on your behalf to protect the environment and having access to useful articles about gardening and local environmental matters, please make a donation to help us with the cost of maintaining The East London Garden Society.

Protect our Trees

Protected trees and grade listed parks should be afforded the same protection as grade listed buildings.There are significant sanctions against persons when the protected status of a tree has been violated.

However, local authorities can give permission for trees subject to preservation orders to be cut down, and there are no statutory protections for listed parks.

Sign this Petition to ask Government tp increase the rights of trees and grade listed parks, to prevent their protection being removed when a local authority so desires.



Pomegranates may have been domesticated as early as the fifth millennium BC as they were one of the first fruit trees to be domesticated in the eastern Mediterranean region.

For years, people have enjoyed the juicy tartness of the famous pomegranate, believing it to bode well for life and prosperity. Nowadays, researchers are unearthing more of the science behind the health benefits of pomegranates.

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Bats and a Local Authority

This is a story about a local authority that pursues its own ambitions, against its own policy for protecting the local environment.

The Limehouse Triangle is a small patch of land that The London Borough of Tower Hamlets decided should be improved for nature. They gave funds for this endeavour and it made the local residents happy to know that nature was to be promoted on their doorstep.

The trouble began in September 2016 when Mayor Biggs, the leader in Tower Hamlets, wrote to a local resident saying that The Limehouse Triangle could no longer be considered as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (a formal conservation designation) owing to the fact that all the biodiversity had been cleared. This decision was made without an accompanying ecology report.

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Nature in The City

Singapore nature in city

Bringing nature into cities is hardly a new idea. In fact, it has swung in and out of vogue for more than a century, ever since Victorian social reformer Ebenezer Howard published what became the Garden Cities of To-morrow manifesto in 1898.

Prompted by the squalid, polluted and dangerous environment faced by Victorian city dwellers and their growing alienation from the natural world, Howard’s idea was simple: to create places that brought together the best of urban and rural - homes surrounded by nature, but close to work and shops.

Despite all of the improvements since Victorian times, we still face challenges not that different from those that Howard was seeking to overcome. But now the stakes, in terms of mankind’s survival on the planet, are significantly raised.

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Forest Gardening

Some believe Forest Gardening to be a new form of gardening. It is a low-maintenance, sustainable, plant-based food production and agroforestry system based on woodland ecosystems, incorporating fruit and nut trees, shrubs, herbs, vines and perennial vegetables which have yields directly useful to humans.

Making use of companion planting, these can be intermixed to grow in a succession of layers to build a woodland habitat.

Forest gardening is a prehistoric method of securing food in tropical areas. In the 1980s, Robert Hart coined the term ‘forest gardening’ after adapting the principles and applying them to temperate climates.

Since prehistoric times hunter-gatherers might have influenced forests in an early way of farming. We have now come full circle because of the present conditions in the world, to a more natural way of gardening.

Cooking in a Different Way - Fennel, Pomegranate & Broad Bean Salad

A receipe that can be used for your picnic.

Pomegranate salad


For the Dressing


Finally ...

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