Do you love spending time in the forests, meadows and other natural areas of the Finger Lakes region? Do you care about preserving the integrity of the natural world and do you want to share this love with others? If so, consider joining Plantations’ Natural Areas Academy.
Natural Areas Academy is offered twice annually—fall and spring. Each season will focus on specific conservation strategies and a specific restoration project within our natural areas. The management practices learned and re-enforced through hands-on workshops and directed stewardships are
transferable to restoration and land management at multiple scales. Enrollment in the fall program is $90/nonmembers and $75/members and students.
Fall 2014 workshops include creating a rain garden, invasive species control, native seed collection, site preparation and native plant identification. Click here for a full schedule.
The first NAA workshop will be a mandatory orientation, and will be held on Thursday, October 2 at 6:00 p.m.
To learn more or to enroll online, clik here.
How can you help our streams and beautify your home landscape at the same time? You can create a rain garden: a shallow, vegetated depression that collects, absorbs, cools, and filters storm water runoff before it reaches our waters. In this two-part class, you will first learn about the basic principles and science of rain gardens, then participate in the creation of an actual rain garden at Cornell Plantations. Designed with native plants that require little maintenance, rain gardens are an inexpensive, relatively simple way to do our part in keeping our waters clean while simultaneously adding value and beauty to our yards. Pre-registration is required.
Dates/times: Thursday, October 2; 6:30-8:30 p.m. and Sunday, November 2; 1-5 p.m.
Instructor: Nikki Cerra, Natural Areas Manager
Location: Nevin Welcome Center
Click here for more information and to register.
The Cayuga Trails Club proposed the Cayuga Trail in 1964 as a special project to offer visitors and Ithacans an introduction to the many beautiful and interesting areas that are within easy walking distance of Ithaca. The Cayuga Trail follows Fall Creek for 8-1/2 miles past hemlock- lined gorges, waterfalls, and through Cornell Plantations' botanical garden, arboretum and natural areas.
On Sunday, September 28, the Cayuga Trails Club will offer two guided hikes to celebrate the trail's 50th anniversary. An 8-1/2-mile hike begins at 9:00 a.m. and a 4-1/2-mile hike begins at 12:15.
Click here for more information and to register for these hikes.
Much of the Cayuga Trail also runs through Plantations Fall Creek and Monkey Run Natural Areas. Click below to view trail maps of these areas:
For George Washington, John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, and James Madison gardening, agriculture, and botany were elemental passions. Join award-winning historian Andrea Wulf for a beautifully illustrated talk looking at the lives of the founding fathers and how their attitude to plants, gardens, and agriculture shaped the American nation.
Date/time: Wednesday, October 1; 7:30 - 8:30 p.m.
Location: Statler Hall Auditorium, Cornell University
Click here for the full 2014 Lecture Series lineup.
Today’s the day!!! Come shop at our all fruit market, explore Appleville, visit the Weird and Wacky Fruit Museum, travel to the tropics, dance to the Caribbean Fruit Band, find your way through our apple maze and much much more!! Don’t let a little rain stop you from coming out to the BEST FAMILY FUN EVENT OF THE YEAR!!!
GO BANANAS exploring the fun and fascinating world of fruits at our Judy's Day Family Festival on Sunday, September 21 from 1 to 5 p.m. Free parking is located at Cornell's B-lot off Route 366. A shuttle bus to the arboretum will be provided. Handicapped parking is located in the arboretum. For more information, click here.
Join us for this guided hike by Cornell Plantations Director of Natural Areas, Todd Bittner, to learn about and view efforts to rebuild the Cascadilla Gorge Trail. Please wear sturdy hiking shoes and dress appropriately for the weather. Hike is moderately strenuous and involves some steep stair climbing. The Hike is free but pre-registration is required. Click here to register.
Meet at the college Avenue entrance to the trail, adjacent to the Schwartz Performing Arts Center.
Cascadilla Gorge was officially openened on September 15 with an opening ceremony
Cornell Plantations' director, Christopher Dunn, Cornell's vice president of facilities and services, KyuJung Whang, former Ithaca Mayor, Carolyn Peterson, current mayor of Ithaca, Svante Myrick, and Plantations' director of natural areas, Todd Bittner welcomed close to 200 guests and expressed their gratitude and excitement for the gorge's reopening. A self-guided tour showing current and historical construction efforts will remain in the gorge until winter closing.
To read the Ithaca Journal article about the reopening ceremony click here.
This summer, 11 Cornell student interns spent 12 weeks working and learning at Plantations, and have now launched a crowdfunding project to ensure that more students will have the same opportunity next year. Check out their video and what they have to say about their experiences at crowdfunding.cornell.edu/plantations.
Unlike many internships in the corporate sector, the Plantations internships are paid, full-time positions, enabling the students to earn money for college while they gain valuable career experience. The current cost of the program is $5,500 per intern, including the student's wages, program expenses for field trips and group workshops, equipment and materials, and coordinator's salary. We have funding for 6 positions with income from permanent endowments and annual commitments from generous donors, and have offered additional positions each year with support from unrestricted gifts. With rising costs and increased pressure on our general operating budget, we need to raise $10,000 in order to be able to offer at least 8 internships in summer 2015.
Your gift—at any level—will help the students meet our goal and ensure funding for 2 student internships next year.
Join Cornell Plantations as we celebrate the opening of the Cascadilla Gorge Trail on Monday, September 15 at 4:30 p.m. After 6 years, multiple weather delays, and with generous support from Cornell University and grants from FEMA totaling $2.75 million, the gorge trail is finally going to be open from Treman Triangle (at Linn Street in downtown Ithaca, NY) all the way to Cornell’s campus! Take it outside and check out all the upgrades!
Event date/time: Monday, September 15; 4:30-5:00 p.m.
Location: Treman Triangle Park at the base of the trail off of Linn Street
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.
Kids of all ages are invited to GO BANANAS exploring the fun and fascinating world of fruits at our Judy's Day Family Festival on Sunday, September 21 from 1 to 5 p.m. Rain or shine - we have tents! Whether tasting fruit, making fruit crafts or just enjoying a beautiful day in our F. R. Newman Arboretum, this event promises to be one you won’t want to miss! Learn more here.
In a tribute to Nathaniel Rand ’12, about 50 Cornell and local community members gathered at the Cornell Plantations’ Nevin Welcome Center August 26 to dedicate the Nathaniel Rand ’12 Memorial Gorge Safety Education Program.
Among them were Rand’s sister, Freya, and parents, Dr. Jacob Rand and Maggi Rand, who have been strong advocates for the gorge safety education program, created after Nathaniel died in a swimming accident in Fall Creek Gorge in 2011. The program promotes the safe enjoyment of the natural gorges that slice through campus, cascading in stunning but dangerous splendor to the flatlands below. Click here to read the full August 28 Cornell Chronicle article.