September Mona Newsletter

___September Green Page___________


I would always have considered myself as being energy aware and pro environment, but over the past year or so I’ve become much more aware of how much needs to be done and how badly we fare as a nation in this regard. In recent months I’ve been reading a special Times Life supplement which concentrates on the state of the Earth and I’m really alarmed about how bad a state the world is in and more so by the fact that all politicians appear to be doing is still going for each others throats instead of sitting down, realising that we have an awful problem and working out how to deal with it. I believe this issue is urgent, perhaps the fact that we are again being squeezed financially by the OPEC nations will give us the incentive to actually do something about it.

In the past year everyone in the country has been up in arms, not wanting an incinerator in their back yard, nor do I, but I am a realist and cannot understand why there hasn’t been a bigger push for recycling. I voted against the incinerator at Kilcock and immediately looked at my own situation and have cut down a lot on purchasing products with excessive packaging. I also tried bringing as much as possible for recycling only to find that not much recycling is possible - Kerbside have closed down - Why? Because it was loosing money. I believe people would back the government to fund more recycling even if it is non profit making. Surely everything can’t be measured by money alone, surely clean air and less landfill is valuable.

Recently I brought two bags of aluminium cans from one recycling venue to another, 5 in all and revisited them a number of times before I finally in frustration gave up and left them at the recycling bin at Kildare Co. Council car park in Naas in the hope that it would motivate someone inside to get things moving. I thoroughly disagree with this practice but in my attempt to save energy by recycling I’d wasted petrol going to these venues. There is very little in place to make it easier for those people who are prepared to work towards a cleaner environment and I know many people who have given up and many more who would make the effort if recycling facilities were more readily available.

Another area I’ve been looking at with a view to using natural energy has been solar energy. However, from my vain efforts in locating anyone using this form of energy I am left wondering if we have anyone working on this form of energy in Ireland.

After last years Young Scientist Exhibition I remember reading with pride that several of our local young scientists had devised gadgets which generated electricity, albeit in small amounts, but I am sure there are plenty of good minds out there who could develop alternative energy systems. Why can’t we harness such people’s ingenuity by perhaps forming a think-tank of inventive people, an organisation which encourages and assists new ways not just on a grand scale like the wind generator farms in the west but on a local or even single unit scale. I think the successful ideas should be offered to the public through a loan system which could be repaid through the E.S.B.

Perhaps starting off with a pilot area project, where recycling, energy saving, organic farming and gardening and pro-environment projects were scored and awarded in a similar way to the tidy towns competition might be the way to go.

Let’s follow the example of Holland and Germany before our beautiful country reaches the point of no return, instead of using the sticky plaster treatment when it is really too late. I believe that time is nearly upon us.

Blueberries are Good for You

Blueberries are an attractive looking, easy to eat, fruit, no messy peeling or pips to extract just pop them in your mouth and experience their subtle flavour.

Very refreshing! They always taste like more.

That's not all; extensive research in American Universities has confirmed that they definitely are good for you. Enhancing vision, reducing eyestrain, lowering cholesterol, helping to prevent cancer and slowing down the aging process. They are good too in a whole host of recipes, not just the Blueberry pie and Blueberry muffins dearly loved by our friends all over America.

Food experts like Mike Smith from the Kildare Kitchen shows just how versatile they are by including Blueberries in his range of delicious food products at his irresistible shop in Johnstown

The blueberry season is in full swing during the month of August and pickers for Larkwood Products Ltd. are busy bringing in an excellent crop of very high quality berries at their new plantation at Ballyteague. These berries are grown on a twenty-acre bogland site that demonstrates the value of what was once considered waste ground. The plantation has been established on bog that was previously cutover for turf extraction. The ground has been prepared and planted over the last four years as a community venture managed by Larkwood Products Ltd. and sponsored by the Allenwood Community Development Association based at the Allenwood Enterprise Park. The project aims to find alternative use for Kildare's peatlands and has been strongly encouraged, supported and funded by KELT the Kildare Leader Company.


Blueberries are available now at the Allenwood Enterprise Centre phone Marie at 045 870804, 870577. Allenwood, Co Kildare.




450g blueberries

1dssp sugar

1 tbsp. lemon juice

225g self – raising flour

110g Margarine

Pinch salt

Milk to mix

Milk to glaze

Pre-heat oven to 200 C or gas mark 6

Grease a 25cm-pie dish


Rub margarine into the flour and salt until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Add milk and mix well until pastry becomes a crumbly paste. Draw together and turn out onto a lightly floured board then knead quickly until smooth and crack-free. Roll out into two rounds, the size of the plate. Cover the base of the plate with one round, place blueberries on this and sprinkle with sugar and lemon juice, then top with second round of pastry. Brush top with milk and sprinkle with sugar. Bake for 30 mins. Until the crust is golden brown.



275g Flour

2 eggs

100ml Milk

225g Blueberries


Mix eggs and flour and gradually add milk, beating thoroughly until batter is smooth. Fold the blueberries into the batter and drop into a greased frying pan in one-tablespoon portions. Fry for a few moment's on each side until golden brown. Serve with butter and syrup, or sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar. Makes 14.

Yield; 6 portions

Per portion: 197 calories, 3 grams protein, 7 grams fat, 33 grams carbohydrate.

More delicious recipes are available from the Tir Na Mona office, contact Morna at PH 045 – 869977.

People who try to whistle you down are only trying to reduce you to their size.

Japanese bonsai trees are tiny perfectly formed specimens. Their stature remains small no matter how old a tree gets, most bonsai trees being only fifteen to eighteen inches tall. To make a bonsai tree, a young sapling is first pulled from the soil, then its taproot and some of the feeder shoots are tied off. Thus, the growth of the bonsai is deliberately stunted.

In sharp contrast, the California sequoia trees grow large. The General Sherman stands 272 feet and measures 79 feet in circumference. If felled this giant tree would provide enough wood to build 35 – five, room homes! The sequoia begins life as a small seed, no larger than the bonsai seed, but its sapling is allowed to be nourished in the rich Californian soil and sunshine.

Neither the bonsai nor the giant sequoia has a choice in determining how

large it will become, but human beings do! We cannot blame others, including our parents, for what they have done or are doing to us. We have the potential to transplant ourselves into rich, nurturing, positive environments.

If others are trying to whistle you down today, get away from their knife. Rejoice in who you are and who you can be.

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