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Acacia tree

Dead Acacia Tree



by Rhonda Spivak, January 15, 2011

Everyone is invited to come celebrate the community-wide Tu B’ Shevat Family event with Congregation Shaarey Zedek and the Jewish National Fund on Sunday, February 5th from 2:00 PM to 5:00 PM at the newly renovated Manitoba Children’s Museum at the Forks.

Participants will enjoy a fun-filled afternoon including creative nature inspired arts & crafts activities, planting their own tree to take home, a museum-wide scavenger hunt, exciting games, delicious snacks and access to the entire Children’s Museum. They can also sample the seven species of fruit from the Tu B’ Shevat Seder and learn all about Israel’s Arava Valley and the KKL-JNF Acacia Project.

Acacia trees are a characteristic feature of the Arava region,  which stretches between the Dead Sea in the north and the Red Sea (Eilat) in the south.  The acacia tree, is mentioned in the Bible in connection with the desert tabernacle. They form a unique, beautiful savanna desert landscape and constitute the basis for a rich and important ecological system, such as not seen elsewhere in the world. The Acacia species are the  very drought resistant trees, relative to others.

Unfortunately, over the past few decades, many acacia trees have died and this trend has been accompanied by virtually no natural propagation.

As a result, KKL-JNF has undertaken the  significant task of regenerating the acacia trees through its “Adopt an Acacia” project.

In the first stage of the project, KKL-JNF  identifed and mapped  the trees suitable for reproduction. Then seeds from the most impressive and high-quality trees were collected and sorted, transferred for germination, and planting at KKL-JNF nurseries. Suitable areas were selected for planting together with farmers from the region. Open spaces where no future development is intended have been chosen in order to prevent the trees from being cut down in the future. The trees are being planted along the edges of agricultural fields and the farmers will be responsible for the care of their adopted trees.

“We are excited to have teamed up with the Jewish National Fund once again for our annual Tu B’ Shevat Family Event, says Shaarey Zedek Program Coordinator Leslie Emery. The creative ideas that have come out of planning this program with Rob Berkowits and Samantha Loxton from JNF will make for a one-of-a-kind culture-infused event for young families."

“Families will learn more about the fantastic work that the Jewish National Fund does to support Israel," say JNF’s Program & Communications Coordinator Samantha Loxton. "It is always a pleasure to partner with Congregation Shaarey Zedek in programs that engage our community in celebrating Jewish holidays.”

For more information about the TuBishvat event and to purchase tickets please call 975-3481 or email [email protected] by Wednesday, February 1st, 2012. 



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Rhonda Spivak, Editor

Publisher: Spivak's Jewish Review Ltd.

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