Herb is one of many Wellesley resident who have discovered the fun of shredding leaves for mulch this fall with a rake, tarp, and a quiet electric mower and blower.
"It beats trying to cram all those leaves into bags and hauling them off the to RDF," Herb wrote recently. "It turns out to be much easier to keep all that organic stuff on my property. I tried it out on my lawn first, then on my drive way and it worked wonderfully. The leaf mulch will be spread about the shrubs and will feed the compost pile next spring," Herb reported enthusiastically.
"As I see it one can buy mulch in plastic bags at the store or make it yourself, get a modest a workout for free, and live longer. (See Blue Zones special on Netflix)," Herb continued. "It would have cost me ~$200 to buy the equivalent amount of bark much in bags and the effort of hauling it in the van would have been a real drag. Dyed bark chips that do little for the soil is what you get for that money and effort. I'll take raking organic leaves and listening to the birds over that," Herb said.
Herb's quick driveway shredding 101:
1. Rake the leaves onto the pavement
2. Set mower high for first pass, lower for second, tip the wheel up for thick patches
3. Rake into a long pile and onto a cheap tarp with a weight at one end and a foot to hold down the lead edge
4. Drag and dump in a pile or enclosure for later use.
5. Blow driveway clean - DONE…. Listen to the birds, talk to neighbors
Same process on the lawn: shredded pieces left behind will break downs over winter - free fertilizer!
Interested in getting involved in local government? Consider running for an elected office in Wellesley.
Wellesley's Annual Election will take place on Tuesday, March 5, 2024.
Nomination papers for interested candidates will be available beginning on Wednesday, December 6, 2023 in the Town Clerk's Office at 888 Worcester Street, Suite 140. Individuals may stop by during regular business hours, Monday through Friday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Town wide office papers are available through January 11, 2024 and are due January 16, 2024 at 5:00 p.m. Town Meeting member papers are available through January 26, 2024 and are due January 30, 2024 at 5:00 p.m.
For information about all elections and election resources, visit the Local Election Information webpages on the Town of Wellesley website.
The League of Women Voters of Wellesley will be holding an information session for those interested in running for Town Meeting or one of Wellesley’s Boards. Please join in person or online this Wednesday, December 6th in the Warren Building, Room 8 (90 Washington St.).
Our town runs thanks to a group of dedicated citizen volunteers along with the wonderful town staff. There are volunteer opportunities large and small where you can run to help keep Wellesley working - from Town Meeting to Select Board.
Learn from Wellesley residents who ran and who won about:
How Wellesley Town Government is structured & the boards that make it up
How to run a campaign & timing for March 2024 election [papers can be obtained in person from the Town Clerk starting December 6 through January 11.]
What the time commitment for Town Meeting Members is, as well as the time commitments for some of the town-wide boards.
FOR MORE INFO or to RSVP PLEASE EMAIL LWVWVoterService@gmail.com.
This event will be taped and available on Wellesley Media shortly after 12/6/23.
For more information, please visit the LWVW Website.
Thanks to Wellesley's RDF for this useful 2023 Holiday Waste Reduction Guide.
Remember: between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day, household waste increases by more than 25% - over 1,000,000 tons per week.
Use the 3R tips below to make the holiday season greener:
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
1. Donations - Reduce by donating clothing, toys & unwanted gifts. Contact Big Brother Big Sister Foundation - they do free home pick-ups of clothing & more. Learn more at bbbsfoundation.org or call 508-466-4590. And donate food to our local Wellesley Food Pantry: wellesleyfoodpantry.org 781-235-1188.
2. Gift buying & giving - Remember wrapping paper is NOT recyclable! Use reusable bags & recycled materials, choose rechargeable toys & batteries, shop locally to both support businesses & reduce your shipping costs + packaging! Consider event tickets, museum memberships, a donation to a charity in the person’s name, OR your own handmade food or gifts.
3. Decorations - Choose Energy Star energy-efficient lighting - LED outdoor holiday lights use only 1/50th of conventional lights. Save ribbons, bows, boxes, bags & décor for the next holiday. Use a potted tree that can be replanted and recycle all trees, wreaths & brush at the RDF (remove all decorations 1st please).
4. Clean Up - Reuse packing & shipping materials! Wrapping paper & styrofoam are NOT recyclable! Recycle your: electronics & batteries, all clean flattened cardboard, mixed ‘office’ paper. Note: Holiday lights and extension cords can be recycled in the metals recycling area (Copper container)!
Please join us tomorrow, Thursday Nov. 16th, at 10am in the Wellesley Free Library Commons area for a Wellesley Green Schools meeting.
Have children in the schools?
Feel passionately about this topic?
Join the discussion which will include:
Waste Diversion updates
Wellesley Land Trust Program
Single use water bottle update
High School Students Groups
School Committee's Strategic Plan
Can't make this one, but want to be get an email about the next meeting on Zoom? Email firstname.lastname@example.org and we will let you know.
Our children thank you!
Great ideas from RecycleSmart MA
With the holiday season fast approaching, we would be remiss if we didn’t talk about the topic on all of our minds…. food.
Despite our love of Thanksgiving leftovers – it turns out we aren’t that good at gobbling up all of our food, especially at the holidays. Each year we throw out over 200 million pounds of turkey alone during the week of Thanksgiving. Over the course of a year, up to 40% of the food in the U.S. goes uneaten – food that could have benefited the one in 11 Massachusetts residents that is considered food insecure.
The good news is that there are simple things we can all do to decrease wasted food (and save money). Here are 5 tip to reduce our “foodprint” during the holidays:
Remember that food and liquids do NOT belong in the recycling bin.
Wasted Food Facts that will Floor You!
 Cabrera, Yvette. “Giving Thanks and Wasting Less,” Natural Resources Defense Council, Nov. 2019, https://www.nrdc.org/experts/yvette-cabrera/giving-thanks-and-wasting-less
 Gunders, Dana. “Wasted: How America is Losing Up to 40 Percent of Its Food from Farm too Fork to Landfill,” Natural Resources Defense Council, NRDC Issue Paper, Aug. 2012 IP:12-06-B
New Data Shows Cost of Food in Massachusetts Highest in United States, The Greater Boston Food Bank, May. 2019, https://www.gbfb.org/news/press-releases/cost-food-massachusetts/
We know there is ALOT going on, but when we stop and consider what we are thankful for it includes you. We know all of you are busy and are taking different steps to protect our community.
Remember, there are things you can do -- big and small-- that will not only help reduce extreme weather but are healthier, cleaner, safer, quieter, less pollutant and enjoyable!
Take some time amidst the hustle of the holidays and make this a meaningful season by being conscious of how your actions can make a more sustainable future. Examples include walking/biking/taking public transit to a store, buying local and pre-loved, making a gift, offering your time or service (i.e. plant a garden for a friend, babysit, prepare a meal), and/or volunteering together.
Please share ideas you have with us at email@example.com.
Again, during this season of thankfulness, THANKS for all you do and dont do.
Grab A Gift @ the “Jewels & Tools" (TOys, Scarves & Bags TOO) rummage sale on Sat 11/18 9- 1 @ the UU CHurch
As the gift giving season comes upon us, get folks you care about a gift (or gift yourself) something from the UU Church's “Jewels & Tools” rummage sale on Saturday, November 18th from 9am to 1pm. This year they have added toys, scarves and handbags to this fun event. The UU Church is located at 309 Washington Street.
You are invited for a community dialog regarding MBTA Communities on Thursday, November 30, 7:00pm in the Wakelin Room, Wellesley Free Library at 530 Washington St. and live-streamed on Wellesley Media Chanel 9
Hear from Meghan Jop, Wellesley's Executive Director of General Government Services, and Eric Arbeene, Planning Director as to:
The MBTA Communities State legislation passed in 2021 in response to our state’s housing crisis. It requires each community with access to mass transit, to create zones where multifamily housing can be built as of right.
Meghan and Eric will share their draft plan, answer questions, and solicit comments from the community. The Town goal is to submit the plan for approval at the March 2024 Annual Town Meeting.
This event is free and open to the public. It is brought to you by the League of Women Voters League of Women Voters (co-sponsored by Sustainable Wellesley and others in the community).
When we changed the clocks, our daylight got shorter, and thus more bikers are riding in the dark. Since safety is of upmost importance, please note that all bike riders in Massachusetts are now required by law to have a front white light, a rear red light as well as rear and side reflectors when riding anytime from 30 minutes after sunset until 30 minutes before sunrise.
MassBikes offers a program which provides free lights to bicyclists who need them across Massachusetts. Our local bike shop, Papa Wheelies, can help you out too.
When you are ready to dispose of your pumpkins and gourds, you can compost them in your backyard or simply bring them to the dump (AKA: RDF=Recycling and Disposal Facility). At the RDF there is a container near the leaf wall labeled ‘pumpkins/gourds’ where you can dispose of them.
If you are composting them at home, you may want to smash up the carved pumpkin a bit before covering it with a layer of leaves. Then you can let nature do its work. Worms will turn your pumpkin into nourishing compost that you can use in the Spring in your garden.