January 26, 2013 - Tu B'Shevat

(Tu B'Shevat began at sundown yesterday and lasts until sundown today.)

Today is “Jewish Arbor Day”—also called the New Year for Trees.

Just as we have a calendar New Year (for most of us, January 1), a school new year (perhaps a date in September), and a fiscal new year (often July 1), Jewish people have Rosh Hashanah (“Jewish New Year”) but also a separate new year for trees. Rather than counting a tree's age from the date it sprouted, with every tree adding another year to its age on the anniversary of that sprouting, the Jewish people move all trees up in age by one year each Tu B'Shevat.

Some Jews who observe this holiday eat fruit grown on trees, or perhaps eat pilaf made with the Seven Species listed in the Bible as being abundant in Israel: wheat, barley, grapes, figs, pomegranates, olives, and dates. Some people plant a tree to celebrate Tu B'Shevat.

Here are some Arbor Day resources: puzzles, mazes, coloring pages, and worksheets. 

Trees are amazing things.
Some people work with them
as they grow to make them take
on certain shapes.

Bonsai is one example.
The bonsai artist tries to
grow a miniature replica
of a large tree.

What do you think of this "tree person"?

This "crooked forest" was
probably the beginnings of
someone's project that
has been abandoned.

Also on this date:

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