The hemlock woolly adelgid, a non-native insect pest, was recently discovered in Cornell Plantations’ Cascadilla Gorge and Beebe Lake Natural Areas, threatening hemlock trees and the biodiversity they support. This invasive, aphid-like insect has decimated hemlock populations in the Eastern US with a nearly 100 percent mortality rate. These losses result in negative environmental changes for many animals and plants, so early detection of new infestations is crucial.Learn more about this invasive insect and what you can do on our hemlock woolly adelgid page.
For updates on the latest hemlock woolly adelgid monitoring events, click here.
If you enjoy interacting with the public and are comfortable working at an information/sales desk, we have just the place for you! Cornell Plantations is recruiting volunteers to help in our visitor center/gift shop. Meeting a friendly, helpful person in our visitor center is often the first Plantations experience our visitors have—and you can help make it a positive one! For more information on duties, qualifications, and availability, click here.
Hikers, please note: Plantations' has closed portions of both Cascadilla and Fall Creek Gorge Trails for the winter due to snow, ice, and falling rocks that create unsafe conditions. The Cascadilla Gorge Trail is closed from downtown to College Avenue. The Fall Creek Trail is closed from Stewart Avenue to the Fall Creek Suspension Bridge. The trails will reopen in spring when conditions allow.
To read all Cornell Plantations news reports, click here.
On Saturday, November 8th, Plantations’ Natural Areas Program held a Cascadilla Gorge clean-up. Given the gorge's steep walls, this was no easy feat! Invaluable help was provided by ten Cornell Outdoor Education staff, who rappelled down and removed accumulated trash from a portion of the gorge slope, and 18 Chi Phi Fraternity volunteers, who hauled out three dumpsters worth of trash. The Fraternity and Sorority Association hopes to continue this partnership to keep our gorges gorgeous! Only through continued stewardship and a shared environmental ethic will we truly protect these remarkable areas.
- View more images taken by Cornell Outdoor Education here.
- View article in the Cornell Chronicle here.
For 28 years, the Peony and Perennial Garden has delighted visitors with its stunning variety of peonies and other low-maintenance perennials. For many, visiting the garden at peak bloom was a rite of spring. In October 2008, the peony garden was dismantled to make way for the upcoming construction of the Brian Nevin Welcome Center. Gardener Glenn Bucien, who took part in the bittersweet task of removing the plants from the garden he cared for over 14 years, commented, “I’m thankful for all the kind words from visitors over the years expressing their appreciation for how well cared-for the garden was.” After the Welcome Center is completed, our focus will turn back to establishing new gardens around the Botanical Garden—including a new peony garden!