June 29 Organic Vegetable Garden Tour in West Chester Borough

West Chester borough is full of beautiful and vivacious gardens you may not even know about! Come along June 29th for a tour of the organic gardens of West Chester, sponsored by the West Chester Green Team and West Chester University’s Office of Sustainability. A food garden from every ward of the borough will be featured, including West Chester University’s vegetable gardens, plus a rain garden installed by the Borough.

A sample of one of the gardens you will get to visit on the tour, growing here (all organically!): Asparagus, lettuce, kale, beans, and much more.

You will have the opportunity to meet greeters with information about each garden, and ask any questions you may have. If you’re looking for inspiration or help with your own gardens, this is the tour to go on!

The event is taking place June 29th, 11am-3pm. The tour route is posted below so that you can walk, bike, or drive to the gardens at your own pace. Or, hop in our van at noon at WC Friends Meeting, 425 N. High St.! The event is 100% FREE.

Courtney Bodle, an organizer of the event, says “this is a casual event… a day full of fun and light gardening education. A day to meet like-minded people, talk about green ideas, and work towards a sustainable future…. “!

See you there! For more info, email westchestergoesgreen@gmail.com

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West Chester Green Team Strawberry Festival

West Chester Green Team Strawberry Festival
Sunday, May 19⋅1:00 – 4:00pm

Everhart Park, 601 W Union St., West Chester, PA 19382. About 2/3 of the way from S. Brandywine St. to S. Bradford Ave.

West Chester Green Team Strawberry Festival, 1-4 p.m. Sun. May 19. All activities structured around the principles of the Green Team: environment, sustainability, green living.

Everhart Park, 601 W Union St., West Chester, PA 19382. About 2/3 of the way from S. Brandywine St. to S. Bradford Ave.

Strawberry shortcake with ice cream by the West Chester Co-operative. Friends of Everhart Park will offer a botanical walk around the park at 2 p.m. Lots of environmental booths sharing information. Displays, games, demonstrations, botanical walk, info on making bat houses, decorating reusable shopping bags, endangered species art activity, pedal power to light bulbs and see energy usage, face painting, yoga in the park, bean bag toss….

Also talks on attracting wildlife to your yard–one for birds and one for butterflies. And Rob Montgomery of Montgomery Landscape Nurseries will conduct a potting activity–organic and plastic free–with peat pots. Information on making bat houses. Buy Nothing West Chester will hold a clothing repair and enhancement workshop to keep old clothes out of landfills and a White Elephant fish pond.

Co-sponsors: West Chester Green Team and its member groups: Chester County Citizens for Climate Protection (4CP), Don’t Spray Me!, Green Team Youth Corps, Plastic-Free Please, Ready for 100, plus Sierra Club and West Chester Co-operative.

If you wish to enjoy a picnic, please bring your own food, drink, and utensils.

More info about the event: mhudgings@gmail.com. About the Green Team: https://wcgreenteam.wordpress.com/.

West Chester Green Team

The West Chester Green Team is a new organization in the West Chester PA area supporting a renewable future and residents’ desire to lead a greener life style.

Component organizations:

Don’t Spray Me! (DSM) raises awareness about the dangers of pesticides, herbicides, and other chemicals, and promotes natural gardens and lawns, and healthy food.

Plastic-Free Please Action Group (Facebook: here) informs residents and businesses about reducing plastic use in our everyday lives and encourages retailers to reduce single-use bags and packaging.

Chester County Citizens for Climate Protection (4CP) educates the community on the serious consequences of climate change and promotes actions to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Ready for 100 works with local leaders and helps cities and communities to transition to 100% clean, renewable energy.

See more on WCGT here.

West Chester Green Team and its component groups are members of the Chester County Environment Alliance (CCEA), which includes a detailed countywide environment calendar.

Download a pdf with the above info here: WCGT handout 2 pdf

A Green Idea: Beeting the Ice

from West Goshen Township Newsletter, vol. 20, no. 1 (summer 2010) [A new idea in West Goshen 9 years ago, but not yet in West Chester, it seems…]

West Goshen Township has added a new weapon in its arsenal against ice: beet juice. Dry salt is effective at lowering the melting temperature of ice to about 15 degrees Fahrenheit—that is, it will melt ice at temperatures of 15 degrees or above. De-sugared beet molasses, when added to dry salt or brine, can melt ice at temperatures as low as -25 degrees, while adding traction, acting as a corrosion inhibitor, and not harming the environment like other brine additives. The beet juice solution is not slippery and doesn’t stain roads or cars. The salt brine and beet juice combination provide optimal results, allowing maximum melting while releasing the least amount of salt onto the roadways. Because the brine solution does not need to be spread as heavily as road salt, trucks do not need to refill as often, meaning additional fuel savings.

Pollinator Disappearance Documented in Vermont, Confirming Insect Apocalypse

Beyond Pesticides, 12/14/18. [Climate change + pesticides: a deadly combination for bumblebees… and flowering plants]

(Beyond Pesticides, December 14, 2018) The richness, diversity, and abundance of wild bumblebees in Vermont has plummeted over the last century, according to an analysis from researchers at the University of Vermont and Vermont Center for Ecostudies (VCE). This research adds fresh evidence to the growing realization that mankind is witnessing and contributing to, as the New York Times recently labeled, a worldwide insect apocalypse. “We’re losing bumblebees even before we fully understand their benefits to our economy and well-being, or how they fit into ecosystems,” said Kent McFarland, study coauthor and conservation biologist at VCE in a press release.

Researchers conducted surveys with the help of 53 trained citizen scientists. Alongside the researchers, these individuals surveyed bumblebee populations through a combination of photos of wild bees and net collections. In total, over 81% of the state’s municipalities were included in the survey, representing all of Vermont pollinator’s biophysical regions….

Read more at Beyond Pesticides.

Please join us Fri. Aug. 31!

Friday Aug. 31, 11:30am to 1pm, rain or shine.

Show our views about pesticide spraying at the weekly Concerned Constituent Action Group rally.

Location: NW Corner of High Street and Market Street, at the Historic Chester County Courthouse, West Chester.

Bring a poster or DSM sign, or pick up one there.

On-street parking or park at the Bicentennial Parking Garage at 20 S. High Street, West Chester.

European Union bans bee-killing neonicotinoid pesticides

Friends of the Earth, April 27, 2018

Friends of the Earth urges EPA and food retailers to follow

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The European Union (EU) governments today voted to ban the use of bee-killing neonicotinoid pesticides on outdoor crops.

The vote by the EU comes after the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) delayed regulatory action on most uses of neonicotinoids until 2018, despite receiving more than six million public comments urging the pesticide be banned in the U.S.

In response to the vote, Tiffany Finck-Haynes, senior food futures campaigner for Friends of the Earth issued the following statement:

“The EU’s groundbreaking ban on bee-killing neonicotinoid pesticides is a huge win for pollinators, people and the planet. Given the overwhelming body of scientific evidence and overwhelming public concern, EPA as well as leading U.S. food retailers like Kroger should take immediate action and eliminate the use of these toxic pesticides.”

See wehat food retailers are or are not doing in the download Swarming the Aisles II: Rating top retailers on pesticide reduction and organic food to protect pollinators at Friends of the Earth