Press release issued 30 May 2012
The first public exhibition of a collection of original paintings and drawings by six local botanical artists commissioned to record the rare and endangered plants of south west England will be on display at the University of Bristol Botanic Garden this weekend.
Special guided tours of the plant conservation area within the Botanic Garden will take place each day to help visitors identify the rare plants and the different habitats where they grow.
Each afternoon a different guest speaker will illustrate aspects of the evolution of some of the rare plants and the action being taken to conserve and display them at the Botanic Garden.
Visitors will hear about the rare mating behaviour of the Avon Gorge Sorbus species and how branches of a rare Sorbus (Sorbus x robertstonii), clinging for dear life at the base of the gorge, have been grafted successfully by two Botanic Garden horticultural trainees.
Nick Wray, Curator of the Botanic Garden, said: “We are delighted to host the first public exhibition of Bristol flora and rare plants of the region.
“The event coincides with and celebrates the 150th anniversary of the formation of the Bristol Naturalists’ Society whose co-founder, Adolf Leipner, set up the original University Botanic Garden.”
Some of the other rare and endangered native plants on display include the Bristol Onion, Allium sphaerocephalon; Bloody Crane’s-bill, Geranium sanguineum; the Cheddar Pink, Dianthus gratianopolitanus; Sea Stock, Matthiola sinuata and the Western Spiked Speedwell, Veronica spicata subsp. Hybrida.
The rare natives group is led by Annie Morris, a member of the Society of Botanical Artists, and includes Jenny Brooks, Anne Girling, Fiona Williams, Erica Thomas and Andrea Pomroy. The artists will also give short talks on techniques used and difficulties encountered in the accurate depiction of different aspects of the rare plants.
A celebration and illustration of Bristol flora: new paintings and rare plants of the West Country at the University Botanic Garden will be open from 10 am to 5 pm on Saturday 2 to Tuesday 5 June. Light refreshments will be available and rare native plants will be for sale.
Entry to the Botanic Garden and art exhibition is £3.50 adults; free to University staff and retired staff, Friends of the Botanic Garden, students and children under 16.
Opening times for the Botanic Garden:
June, July, August and September. Open Monday to Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 10 am to 4.30 pm.
Admission is £3.50 adults; free to University staff and retired staff, Friends of the Botanic Garden, students and children under 16.
The garden also offers private day, evening and weekend guided tours for groups and gardening or any other leisure clubs. Please contact the garden for further information. There is a charge for the guide.
For further information: University of Bristol Botanic Garden, The Holmes, Stoke Park Road, Stoke Bishop, Bristol BS9 1JG. Tel (0117) 331 4906.
About the Bristol Naturalists’ Society
The Bristol Naturalists’ Society exists to stimulate a greater awareness of natural history and geology in the Bristol area. It is a thriving and friendly society with something of interest for everyone, young or old, professional or amateur. It is actively involved in a long-term programme of education, research and conservation. Each year its talks, trips and publications are enjoyed by hundreds of people wanting to find out more about our natural world.
Directions to the Botanic Garden From the city centre go to the top of Whiteladies Road, at the junction and traffic lights go straight ahead across Durdham Down towards Stoke Bishop. At the traffic lights go straight ahead and take the first turning on the right into Stoke Park Road, The Botanic Garden at the Holmes is 150 m on the right.
Members of the public wishing to support the work of the Botanic Garden should join the Friends of the Garden. For more information write to Susan Redfern, The Membership Secretary, 24 Dublin Crescent, Henleaze, Bristol BS9 4NA.
Whiteana postcard by Annie Morris
Image by Annie Morris
The event coincides with and celebrates the 150th anniversary of the formation of the Bristol Naturalists’ Society whose co-founder, Adolf Leipner, set up the original University Botanic Garden.