Willie was a long-time volunteer at Cornell Plantations, gardener, and artist. Her work, a series of delicate watercolors of blossoms and fruits, will be on display in the Nevin Welcome Center until February 29. There will be an opening reception on Saturday, January 9th from 2pm – 4pm light refreshments will be served, and the event is free and open to the public.
In her prime, Willie was an avid gardener and for decades she enjoyed visiting Cornell Plantations, where she was a long-time volunteer and active member and past president of the Auraca Herbarists. Confronting serious ailments, her prolific gardening activities changed from shovel and wheelbarrow to container plantings. Then, in time, her focus shifted to creating these beautiful watercolors of blossoms and fruits which are on display. These delicate paintings were found in a drawer after her passing.
They came as a surprise even to her family and close friends. As her beloved husband of over 60 years said, “Perhaps Willie saw the paintings as metaphor for life: blossoming, then fading and dying, as we all do, with youth, maturity, and finally, passing on. It is our good fortune that Willie’s last flower creations, the paintings, her Celebration of Life, are ours to enjoy, forever.”
The Nevin Welcome Center, located in the botanical garden of Cornell Plantations, is open Tuesday – Saturday, from 10am – 4pm.
With the weather forecast calling for unseasonably warm temperatures, we decided to keep the arboretum open. Cornell Plantations' Botanical Garden and Arboretum are open from dawn to dusk every day, and we invite you to visit and enjoy the fresh air over the holiday break.
Although the gorge is closed, you can tour it virtually using Google's Street View feature. Click here for a 360 degree view in front of one of the gorge's waterfalls. To view more points in the gorge, click on the yellow “pegman” in the bottom right corner and drag it to a point on the trail.
On December 4, Plantations staff honored the volunteers during a luncheon, where we recognized volunteers for their dedicated service. Read more on our Tumblr blog
Tom Reimers (shown left) was givien special recognition for 30 years of service PLUS over 1000 lifetime hours of service.
Date/time: Saturday, December 19; 2:00 -3:00 p.m.
Cost:$5 (free for Plantations members and Cornell students) Pre-registration is not required.
Instructor: Professor Peter Davies
Location: Meet in front of the Nevin Welcome Center
College Magazine recognized Cornell University for its beautiful scenery including Ithaca's 150 waterfalls and Beebe Lake on campus along with the breadth of outdoor offerings through P.E. and Cornell Outdoor Education. Click here to view the full article.
Bestcollegereviews.org ranked the arboretum as #1 of 50 most beautiful college arboretums for its rolling hills, panoramic views and beautiful gardens that make Cornell one of the nation's most beautiful campuses. Click here to see who made the list.
Read more about their project in the November 3 Cornell Daily Sun article "Cornell Team Looks at Automotive Dangers Faced by Local Amphibians."
Perhaps the world’s most distinctive tree, Ginkgo, a native of China, is a botanical oddity and a widely recognized botanical “living fossil.” Long thought to be extinct in the wild, Ginkgo is today widely cultivated and is beloved for the elegance of its leaves, prized for its edible nuts, and revered for its longevity. It is one of the world’s most popular street trees and source of herbal medicines. Professor Crane’s lecture will explore the evolutionary and cultural history of the species from its mysterious origin through its proliferation, drastic decline, and ultimate resurgence.
Christopher Dunn, the E. N. Wilds Director of Cornell Plantations says, “having known Professor Crane for more than 20 years and having the utmost respect and admiration for his scientific work, his keen interest in plant conservation, and his promotion of citizen science, I am thrilled that we can welcome and host such an influential botanist, and introduce him to the Cornell community. “
Prof. Peter Crane’s work focuses on the diversity of plant life: its origin and fossil history, current status, and conservation and use. From 1992 to 1999 he was Vice President of the Field Museum in Chicago with overall responsibility for the museum’s scientific programs. During this time he established the Office of Environmental and Conservation Programs and the Center for Cultural Understanding and Change, which today make up the Division of Environment, Culture, and Conservation (ECCo). From 1999 to 2006 he was director of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, one of the largest and most influential botanical gardens in the world. His tenure at Kew saw strengthening and expansion of the gardens’ scientific, conservation, and public programs. Prof. Crane was elected to the Royal Society (the U.K. academy of sciences) in 1998. He is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, foreign associate of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences, a foreign member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, and a member of the German Academy Leopoldina. He was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2004 for services to horticulture and conservation. Prof. Crane currently serves on the Board of the Global Crop Diversity Trust, the Missouri Botanical Garden, the Chicago Botanic Garden, the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center at the University of Texas, and the Gaylord and Dorothy Donnelley Foundation.
President Elizabeth Garrett, Provost Michael Kotlikoff, and Vice President Ryan Lombardi invite Cornell students, staff and faculty and members of the Ithaca community to join them for a cold weather walk in the Beebe Lake area and Mullestein Winter Garden. "Pop-up" stations and signs along the route will help you stay active in cold weather by reminding you of resources for renting cold weather gear, reducing stress through exercise, using nature to reduce stress and increase physical and mental health, and appreciating Cornell's abundant natural resources in cold weather.
Hot chocolate will be served at the Nevin Welcome Center, and the Cornell Wellness Program will give free Cornell hats to the first 50 people to arrive for the walk.
Date/time: Sunday, November 15; 9:30 a.m.
Cost: Free and no registration is required
Location: Meet in front of Appel Commons off of Cradit Farm Road on Cornell's north campus.
The normal life span of a Northern Catalpa tree is approximately 60 years. Through archival research, we determined that ours has lived to be at least 75 years old. As part of our regular tree monitoring process, our professional arborists noted significant and widespread decay in the tree this year. They determined that, because of this decay, it fell well below our threshold for risk and deemed it unsafe to visitors, staff, and to the other plant collections found in the Young Flower Garden. As a result, this tree was recently removed.
This Catalpa has been around since the inception of Cornell Plantations, as such, removing it was a difficult decision and process to undertake. We will miss this beautiful tree and all the ways it has graced our garden over the years.
To learn more about how our arborists made this decision, watch this short video.
Lead arborist Lee Dean (shown right) removing branches from the catalpa tree on November 2.
Plantations Director named to the US Board of the International Union of Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources
IUCN-US is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization registered in Washington, DC, which supports its partner organization, IUCN, and other partner organizations with similar missions in valuing and conserving nature, ensuring effective and equitable governance of its use, and deploying nature-based solutions to global challenges in climate, food and development. IUCN supports scientific research, manages field projects all over the world, and brings governments, NGOs, the UN and companies together to develop policy, laws and best practice. IUCN is the world’s oldest and largest global environmental organization, with more than 1,300 government and NGO Members and almost 13,000 volunteer experts in some 160 countries. IUCN’s work is supported by over 1,000 staff in 45 offices and hundreds of partners in public, NGO and private sectors around the world.
Regarding his appointment Dr. Dunn states, “The International Union for the Conservation of Nature is the world’s oldest and largest NGO focused on major environmental issues. As such, I am honored to be appointed to the Board of IUCN-US, as this affords Cornell Plantations and Cornell University to be recognized as a global player in addressing major conservation and policy priorities in the coming decades.”
For more information on the work of IUCN and its members and partners see http://www.iucn.org.
Classical Greece was the birthplace of a medical model that persisted throughout the Roman Empire, the medieval Western and Islamic worlds, and even into the 19th century. This talk will present the history of pharmaceuticals, based on cultivated and wild plants, that were developed through the collaboration of physicians and herbalists that started in Greece. That history now includes the Cornell Plantations themselves, which furnished the raw materials for some recent experiments testing the efficacy of ancient pharmaceuticals against microbes and cancer cells.
Click here to read more on our Tumblr blog.
Date/time: Wednesday, October 28; 7:30 p.m.
Location: Statler Hall Auditorium
Click here for the full line-up of lectures.
Plantations is a rainbow of color! Now is the ideal time to enjoy peak fall color in our gardens and natural areas. Learn what's reponsible for this beauty in the article "Autumn's Rainbow" by staff arborist Lee Dean.
Plant exploration in the Tropics of the world helped drive the construction of the Great Glasshouse Conservatories of Europe and North America. These magnificent pieces of architecture were once overflowing with plants infused with legend and lore just as wild and exotic as the flowers themselves. Even these great empires under glass could barely satisfy the insatiable appetite for new and unusual tropical plants including orchids, palms, Aroids and Begonias. Many of these wonderful plants made only short appearances in cultivation only to survive within the pages of horticultural literature as vestiges of a once glorious period of discovery for glasshouse horticulture. As time has passed the once remote and virtually inaccessible habitats these plants called home are now reachable and the plants, both those known and some unknown, are within the grasp of horticulture once again. Hachadourian’s lecture will focus on modern tropical plant exploration using both traditional and modern tools, hunting for spectacular plants that have been long absent from cultivation, and their rediscovery and reintroduction to modern glasshouse collections.
“We’re very excited to have Marc take part in our Fall Lecture Series,” stated Sonja Skelly, director of education at Cornell Plantations. “Marc is not a stranger to Plantations, or to Cornell for that matter. He earned his degree in Plant Sciences from the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Cornell University, and we are very glad to welcome him home and to travel the world through his lecture to see some of the great plants that are being rediscovered.”
As Director of the Nolen Greenhouses for Living Collections, Hachadourian oversees the state-of-the-art greenhouse complex where tens of thousands of plants are grown for Conservatory exhibitions; the gardens, collections, and seasonal displays; and scientific research at NYBG. Hachadourian began his career at NYBG as horticulturist for the orchid collection and now serves in a curatorial capacity for that collection. With over 25 years of experience in professional horticulture, Hachadourian has dedicated himself to increasing public awareness about the importance of global plant conservation and the appreciation of plant biodiversity.
William H. Hamilton Lecture
Date/time: Wednesday, October 14; 7:30 p.m.
Location: Statler Hall Auditorium, Cornell University
View the full line-up of fall lectures here.