The Garlic Project at Cornell Plantations!

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Gary Fine (Librarian for the Durland Alternatives Library) and I met at Ithaca’s Food Justice Fair in 2013.  We had both been long time gardeners, garlic growers and enthusiasts. It has been my experience that plants often bring people together and before long, there are a whole host of things to talk about. Our meeting revealed in fact, that we had similar ideas about many things, especially related to sustainability; and so The Garlic Project was born.

The Garlic Project intends to connect people to the food they eat through education, empowerment, and building community. Participants will learn how to grow healthy food, help grow it throughout our community and learn more about garlic culture and uses.

Why did we choose garlic? For our common goal of working and educating ourselves about what sustainability is, garlic has many benefits. It can be grown without pesticides and can be grown in a small space. It grows well locally, lending itself to improving varieties adaptable to this area and growers can save their own seed (Garlic “seed” is the individual clove in the bulb).

Garlic does not require added energy for curing and storage.  One crop, when stored in a cool, dry place can keep well until the following years’ crop is ready for harvest. In addition, garlic has medicinal qualities; it is nutritious and makes food taste better. Now that is sustainable!

Through the Garlic Project we intend to add new planting sites throughout the community each year and get more people involved. Participants can expect to make new friends, gain skills, and have a great autumn day outdoors. Our area could conceivably become a major garlic growing region. At the very least, a local Garlic Festival may be in order!

The first Garlic Project planting, a collaboration between PEEPS (Plantations Environmental Education Program for Sustainability),The Durland Alternative Library (a project partner of the Center for Transformative Action), and the community will take place at Cornell Plantations on Saturday, November 8th in the Pounder Vegetable Garden at 1:00 PM. We ask that you register for the event (see: http://www.ssreg.com/cornellplantations/classes/results.asp?cID=78880). By registering we will be able to contact folks and plan a rain date on Sunday.

—Donna Levy                                                                          Environmental Education Outreach Coordinator at Cornell Plantations

Gov. Linda Lingle to speak at Cornell University on Clean Energy Initiatives

Linda Lingle, former governor of Hawai’i, will be speaking on Hawai’i’s clean energy initiatives at Cornell University on Thursday, October 23 at 5pm in Warren Hall Auditorium.

Gov. Lingle will explain how the Aloha State’s geography, regulatory regime and dire need to end its first-in-the-nation reliance on imported oil coincided with bipartisan political leadership, community enthusiasm for change, and help from the Federal Government to transform itself from the most oil-dependent state in America to a national and international leader and test bed for sustainable, renewable energy and energy efficiency measures.  She will also share her thoughts on how Hawai’i will reach its goal of 70% clean energy by 2030.

“As a former resident of the Aloha State, I’m no stranger to the work that Governor Lingle was able to accomplish during her tenure,” stated Dr. Christopher Dunn, the E. N. Wilds director of Cornell Plantations. “The work she spearheaded in Hawai’i can serve as a primer for the rest of the United States, and it’s my distinct pleasure to bring her to Cornell to share her visionary ideas on environmental stewardship.”

Linda Lingle is a founding member and currently serves on the Governors’ Council at the Bipartisan Policy Center, a Washington DC think tank whose policy initiatives are respected by national leaders of both political parties.

She served two terms as Governor of Hawai’i between 2002 and 2010 and prior to that was twice elected Mayor of Maui County. She was Hawaii’s first woman governor, and the first Republican elected in 40 years.

As Governor, Lingle became intensely focused on energy security and sustainability issues while examining chokepoints that had the potential to wreak havoc on Hawaii’s economy and way of life.  She currently serves as a member of the U.S. Energy Security Council whose mission is to diminish the inordinate strategic importance of oil, which stems from its virtual monopoly over transportation fuels.

Governor Lingle became Professor Lingle earlier this year when she returned to her alma mater, Cal State Northridge, to teach a seminar in public policy. She will return to Northridge for the 2015 Spring Semester.

Lingle’s lecture is sponsored by Cornell Plantations, and co-sponsored by the David Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future at Cornell University

The Landscape Architecture Foundation publishes comprehensive study of Cornell Plantations’ bioswale garden

 The Landscape Architecture Foundation (LAF) has published a comprehensive case study of the bioswale garden at Cornell Plantations. This is the first Cornell University site chosen for the LAF’s case study program, and was selected because the LAF believes the site shows the potential for a demonstration of substantial landscape benefits. The study was conducted by Michele Palmer, of dba Templeton Landscape Architecture & Planning located in Cooperstown, NY, in 2014.

The bioswale was installed as part of the Nevin Welcome Center building project in 2010. The project, which includes a green roof, and several other sustainable features, received LEED Gold from the U.S. Building Council.  The bioswale was designed to slow and clean storm water runoff from the parking lot while providing an attractive garden landscape, which is more ecologically minded than a traditional storm drain system.  The garden is used as a teaching landscape to showcase the benefits and functions of a bioswale garden.

The landscape surrounding the Nevin Welcome Center serves as a pedestrian-friendly gateway to the adjacent 25-acre botanical garden and features a lush horticultural display with interpretive signage that articulates some of the ecosystem services provided by the bioswale, filter practices, and green roof.

Some of the bioswales performance benefits found by Palmer are:

·      Eliminates an estimated 78,000 gallons of runoff per year, reducing annual stormwater runoff from the site by 31%.

·      Increases biodiversity. The bioswale contains over 50 plant species, giving it a Reciprocal Simspon Index of 11.5, which is 26.3 times higher than that of a turfgrass seed mix typically used for dry swales.

·      Provides recreational and educational opportunities for an estimated 50,000 visitors per year based on 2013 counts. 68% of 71 survey respondents achieved the bioswale learning objectives, answering 7 out of 9 questions correctly.

·      Helps galvanize visitor interest and support for green infrastructure. 92% of the 71 survey participants said they were interested in seeing green infrastructure in their communities, and 52% report that they are likely to install smaller scale practices in their home landscape.

“We are honored to be selected for this case study program,” stated Dr. Christopher Dunn, the E. N. Wilds director of Cornell Plantations. “The bioswale garden has quickly become one of the premier gardens of its kind, inspiring other botanic gardens to create similar landscapes, as well as inspiring visitors to create similar gardens in their communities and in their own backyards.”

The bioswale garden was designed by Tobias Wolf of Wolf Lighthall Landscape Architecture and Planning, along with Mary Hirshfeld, retired director of horticulture for Cornell Plantations and Irene Lekstutis, landscape designer at Cornell Plantations.

To see the full results of the LAF study please visit: https://lafoundation.org/research/landscape-performance-series/case-studies/case-study/740/

As seen at @cornell_university’s botanical garden! An amazing #fall shot of #cornellplantations by Jay Potter! #ithaca

As seen at @cornell_university’s botanical garden! An amazing #fall shot of #cornellplantations by Jay Potter! #ithaca

Early fall in the F. R. Newman Arboretum!  Photos by: Jay Potter

Stunning!!!!!

The Cascadilla Gorge Trail is re-open!

Last week Cornell Plantations, along with it’s partners at Cornell University, and with representatives from the city of Ithaca re-opened the Cascadilla Gorge Trail.

The trail was closed for 6-years while we completed a $2.75 Million restoration project.  There will be two guided hikes led by Todd Bittner, Director of natural areas at Cornell Plantations.  The first is Friday, September 26 beginning at 3pm.  The second is Friday, October 3 beginning at noon.  The hikes are free, but pre-registration is required: http://bit.ly/ZHrmz0

In the next few posts, we will be telling you the story of the gorge trail, and today, we begin at the beginning…

Historic Cascadilla

The gorge has changed slowly but steadily over time. The gorge continues to widen and deepen, at about 1/8” per year. These changes don’t come evenly though, as centuries may pass before large blocks of the gorge collapse. A more recent change has been the loss of native biodiversity, with many native wildflowers, shrubs and trees being replaced by an invasive, non-native flora.

Construction of the trail system began in 1929 and was completed in 1931. The work was enabled by a $175,000 (approximately $2,400,000 in 2014 dollars) gift from Colonel Henry W. Sackett (class of 1875 and Cornell Board of Trustee member) for development of trails in both Cascadilla and Fall Creek Gorges. The map is notable for what it proposed as well as what is no longer present. The Dewitt Place covered bridge and a 40’ tall dam just upstream as well as multiple gorge trail entrances and staircases have long since been abandoned or removed.

Stone Foot Bridge

The Sackett funded trail project constructed this iconic stone arch footbridge. The bridge today appears nearly identical to the one built in 1930, though the surrounding forest has changed significantly.

College Avenue Bridge

This circa 1930’s photo of the College Avenue Bridge shows portions of the trail below, which have been changed repeatedly over the intervening 85 years.

Treman Triangle

The planning for the parkland known today as Treman Triangle, was one of the more contentious projects funded by the Col. Henry Sackett gift. Papers Livingston Farrand archived at Kroch Library documented a significant difference of opinion about the parks future design between the benefactor, Sackett, and Cornell Architecture Professor, Gorton Davis.  The photo shows the park following its construction, circa 1930.

cornelluniversity:

Empire State Building lit BIG RED and white to kick off #Cornell150 celebration. Stand up and be counted as a proud Cornellian. Show your Sesquicentennial spirit! 

What a great weekend for Cornell!  It began with a NASDAQ take over in Time Square, then this, and this morning the Big Red Band took over the Today Show Plaza!  As Cornell Plantations celebrates is 70th year, we wish you a happy 150th birthday!

cornelluniversity:

Empire State Building lit BIG RED and white to kick off #Cornell150 celebration. Stand up and be counted as a proud Cornellian. Show your Sesquicentennial spirit! 

What a great weekend for Cornell!  It began with a NASDAQ take over in Time Square, then this, and this morning the Big Red Band took over the Today Show Plaza!  As Cornell Plantations celebrates is 70th year, we wish you a happy 150th birthday!

Join Wynnie Stein, for Plantations next Garden to Table program on 9/14) as she shares some of the best loved recipes from the famed Moosewood Restaurant located in Ithaca, NY.  There are only 10 spots left - so sign up today: http://bit.ly/1qJgHg1
To peek your curiosity here is a recipe for the Moosewood’s famed Lime Pecan Bars:
These bars are a very popular treat at Moosewood. They have a chewy cookie crust topped with a sweet lime custard. Only freshly squeezed lime juice will provide zing without bitterness. If you can’t resist the flavor of limes, you will definitely want to use the optional lime peel, although these bars are excellent without it.
Get the full recipe here: http://bit.ly/1rWgwls

Join Wynnie Stein, for Plantations next Garden to Table program on 9/14) as she shares some of the best loved recipes from the famed Moosewood Restaurant located in Ithaca, NY.  There are only 10 spots left - so sign up today: http://bit.ly/1qJgHg1

To peek your curiosity here is a recipe for the Moosewood’s famed Lime Pecan Bars:

These bars are a very popular treat at Moosewood. They have a chewy cookie crust topped with a sweet lime custard. Only freshly squeezed lime juice will provide zing without bitterness. If you can’t resist the flavor of limes, you will definitely want to use the optional lime peel, although these bars are excellent without it.

Get the full recipe here: http://bit.ly/1rWgwls


Celebrate the reopening of the Cascadilla Gorge Trail
Monday, September 15, 2014 4:30 - 5:00 p.m. Treman Triangle Park at the base of the trail off of Linn Street

Remarks by
Christopher Dunn, E. N. Wilds director of Cornell PlantationsKyuJung Whang, vice president of facilities services, Cornell UniversityCarolyn Peterson, former Mayor of the City of IthacaMayor Svante Myrick, Mayor of the City of IthacaTodd Bittner, director of Natural Areas for Cornell Plantations
Everyone is invited to do a self-guided tour of the gorge after the ceremony.
Celebrate the reopening of the Cascadilla Gorge Trail
Monday, September 15, 2014
4:30 - 5:00 p.m.


Treman Triangle Park at the base of the trail off of Linn Street
Remarks by
Christopher Dunn, E. N. Wilds director of Cornell Plantations
KyuJung Whang, vice president of facilities services, Cornell University
Carolyn Peterson, former Mayor of the City of Ithaca
Mayor Svante Myrick, Mayor of the City of Ithaca
Todd Bittner, director of Natural Areas for Cornell Plantations

Everyone is invited to do a self-guided tour of the gorge after the ceremony.

cornellcals:

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