January 2013

Happy New Year!

In this issue
  • Enhancing Nature Learning for Head Start
  • Ned Friedman Presents Director's Lecture Series
  • Event for Members: Collecting Vines in Australia
  • Take a Class: Pruning Plants in Winter
  • Wellness Walk Features Seasonal Highlights
  • When America First Met China Talk on January 29
  • Collection Spotlight on Conifers
  • Drawn to Woods: Exhibition by Paul Olson

  • Ned Friedman Presents Director's Lecture Series
    Ned Friedman

    In its third year, the Arnold Arboretum Director's Lecture Series features nationally-recognized experts presenting talks on Earth's biodiversity and issues associated with current science. Director Ned Friedman kicks off the series on Monday, January 14 at 6:30pm with a talk entitled "Plants, The First Three Billion Years: A Reflection on the Nature of Evolutionary History." This lecture is full; call 617.384.5277 to be added to the waiting list. Register today for the remaining talks in the series online.

    Event for Members: Collecting Vines in Australia
    Plant Collecting

    Last fall, visiting researcher Juan Losada and Head Arborist John Del Rosso traveled to Australia to make collections of Austrobaileya, an evergreen vine found only in the rainforest of Queensland. Although the Arboretum has a century-long history of plant collecting in Asia, this trip marked only the second expedition by Arboretum representatives to the continent. Join us for a special presentation for Arboretum members on January 22 in the Hunnewell Building; refreshments at 6:00pm, presentation at 6:30pm. Juan and John will talk about their experiences and share pictures and videos from the tropical rainforest.

    Take a Class: Pruning Plants in Winter
    Winter Pruning

    Though winter gives New England gardeners some time to take stock, it also can be a time of action to ensure healthier plants. On January 26, Jen Kettell, a horticultural technologist at the Arboretum and an ISA-certified arborist, will explain the reasons to prune ornamental plants at this time of year and what needs to be considered when cutting back dormant trees, shrubs, and vines. She will identify plants that benefit from winter pruning, demonstrate techniques, and explain how plants heal from prudent cuts.

    Wellness Walk Features Seasonal Highlights
    Ilex verticillata

    Enjoy a brisk January walk in the landscape and explore seasonal characteristics of the living collection on Sunday, January 13 at 1:00pm. Keep fit and keep connected with plants and nature at this time of year. Admire the bark and branch architecture of trees and encounter seasonal highlights along the route. This activity is free, but registration is requested. In case of inclement weather, call 617.384.5209.

    When America First Met China Talk on January 29
    America Met China

    Join us for a bit of history. Best-selling author Eric Jay Dolin traces America's fraught relationship with China back to its roots in the nineteenth century. He will delve into the rise in trade which catalyzed America's emerging economy while sparking an ecological and human rights catastrophe that casts a long shadow to this day. Join us on January 29 to hear about this period in history that preceded and spurred American botanical expeditions to China beginning in the 1890s. This talk sets the stage for our March lecture with Tony Kirkham of the Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew, contrasting images taken by E.H. Wilson with more contemporary views of his travel routes.

    Collection Spotlight on Conifers
    Colorado Spruce

    The conifer collection at the Arnold Arboretum is a wonderful place to observe and enjoy cone-bearing plants. The collection showcases 580 gymnosperm taxa (kinds) representing 30 genera and 9 families. Specimens are planted among close relatives collected from around the world for side-by-side comparison. Accurate identification of conifers requires an examination of the cones, though leaf (needle) characteristics also provide important clues to identification.

    Drawn to Woods: Exhibition by Paul Olson
    Drawn to Woods

    Sketchbook in hand, Paul Olson walks the Arboretum's less traveled paths observing and reflecting on the diversity of life and the passing of time. A teacher in the Illustration Departments of both MassArt and Rhode Island School of Design, Olson has created illustrations and paintings in varied subjects over the years. All the work in this new exhibition, from quick sketches to larger drawings and paintings, were completed in the landscape of the Arnold Arboretum. Attend the opening reception on January 19 from 1:00 to 3:00pm in the Hunnewell Building.

    All images from the Arnold Arboretum Archives except exhibition image courtesy of Paul Olson. Book cover courtesy of Eric Jay Dolin.

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    Enhancing Nature Learning for Head Start
    Head Start

    Since 2006, the Arnold Arboretum has worked with South Side Head Start in neighboring Roslindale, providing field experiences to preschool children and teacher training for staff. In the fall of 2012, Arboretum science specialist Ana Maria Caballero began visiting South Side classrooms twice a week to further enhance science instruction at the center. Ana Maria designed and presented nature-based activities to complement the children's classroom themes. The Arboretum's commitment to this new level of collaboration will continue throughout the school year and into the summer months, and is supported through the Nature Study Fund for City Children. Many of the pre-schoolers in the program will return to the Arboretum as they enter to continue learning in our elementary field study programs.

    Learn more about our Head Start initiative...
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