Tu BiShvat 2022: Hebrew festival in Derbyshire and how it helps the environment

The Jewish festival of Tu BiShvat, or Tu B’Shevat, will take place on January 16 and end on January 17 in 2022. Tu BiShvat is generally known as a festival of life and nature – it is common to plant a tree to celebrate this day.

Tu BiShvat is not bound by the traditional Gregorian calendar. Instead, it follows the Hebrew calendar, taking place on the 15th day of Shevat. As such, Tu BiShvat lands on a different day each year – in 2023 it will happen from February 5 to February 6 and in 2024 it will be from January 24 to January 25.

Some may go beyond simply planting a single tree – in the early 1900s, the Jewish National Fund began using the day to plant eucalyptus trees to stem the spread of malaria. Nowadays they organize big tree planting events, often in a ceremonial way. It has also become a day of ecological and environmental awareness, an issue that is increasingly present in today’s world.

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Pergola on Tu BiShvat.

In recent years, Tu BiShvat has been compared to Arbor Day and is often referred to as “Israeli Arbor Day”. Arbor Day is a worldwide tradition in which trees or other forms of flora are planted, with its origins in Spain in 1594.

It was also considered a “Jewish Land Day” for similar reasons. It is a day when the world around us and the natural environment of the planet receive the most attention and attention. In Israel, at Tu BiShvat, it is estimated that over a million locals participate in the event each year, planting a tree as it goes (or multiple trees).

Tu BiShvat, like many Jewish celebrations, comes with an assortment of traditional dishes. Usually, dried fruits and nuts (most often almonds) will be eaten on this day. Again, this is done in alignment with the celebration of nature. The consumption of nuts and dried fruits in Tu BiShvat is an ancient tradition dating back to the Middle Ages.