Newsletter March, 2022

NEWSLETTER

OUR MISSION:
To preserve the natural and cultural heritage of El Charco del Ingenio, and maintain a botanical garden dedicated to the conservation and study of regional flora and ecosystems, with a primary focus on environmental education.

NEWSLETTER CONTENTS

Vol. XVII, No 03

POLO ESTRADA, A WALKER ON THE MOUNTAIN
THE NEW RECEPTION OF EL CHARCO OPENS ITS DOORS…
SPRING EQUINOX 2022
EL CHARCO DEL INGENIO TAKES OVER THE PRESIDENCY OF THE MEXICAN ASSOCIATION OF BOTANICAL GARDENS
The new El Charco Visitor Guide
NEW SPECIES OF ORCHID IN THE BOTANICAL GARDEN
We do not pretend to change the world, we just want to blossom
NATURAL HISTORY TOURS ARE BACK
SOUL GIFTS, MUSICAL GIFTS: THANK YOU, MICHAEL HOPPÉ
SCIENCE AND ART IN THE BOTANICAL GARDEN

Life is brief and fleeting
It’s a blink of an eye
It’s a flower among thistles
A sigh and nothing more
— Leopoldo Estrada

POLO ESTRADA, A WALKER ON THE MOUNTAIN

With unspeakable sorrow we feel the death, which happened on February 10, of our beloved Leopoldo Estrada Buenrostro, one of the founders and makers of the Botanical Garden, an outstanding member of its Board of Directors and a fighter always devoted to the defense of the bio-cultural heritage of Mexico, San Miguel de Allende and the Valle del Maíz, his small homeland. In love with our mountains’ the oak forests, he walked them, cared for them and caressed them for years, seeking their preservation as natural areas to celebrate life. A medical doctor by profession, he attended rural communities from a very young age and was closely acquainted with the reality of the Mexican countryside. His passion for popular culture led him to be a great image maker, from whose hands emerged masks and mojigangas (big puppets) that gave life, movement and dance to the huapangos and popular dances in and around San Miguel and beyond. But above all, Polo was a great playmate and friend, a loving father and husband, a kind man who always radiated affection, humor and confidence to those around him who were lucky enough to be his close friends.

THE NEW RECEPTION OF EL CHARCO OPENS ITS DOORS…

With great satisfaction we inform all the visitors, members and friends of the Botanical Garden that, finally, after a long and eventful construction stage, the new Visitor Center was inaugurated last February. This includes a new Interpretive Room, which offers, in an entertaining and substantial way, relevant content on El Charco del Ingenio ecological reserve, the conservation project and the hydrologic basin where the Botanical Garden is located. The new interpretive module, open to everybody, comes to reinforce our organization’s educational mission, aimed at building a culture of love and care for the natural world, with special attention to the youngest population in our society.

The opening ceremony was sealed with a simple and moving ceremony by the indigenous stewardships of Ojo de Agua and Valle del Maíz communities in San Miguel, caretakers of ancient traditions and supporters of the bio-cultural heritage that El Charco represents for more than 30 years.

The new Visitor Center has been possible thanks to the confluence of many efforts: architects, engineers, museum designers, editors, interior designers, gardeners, iron workers, carpenters, etc., gathered in various work teams, as well as the contributions of numerous donors that made this relevant project a reality. To all of them, infinite thanks (and an apology in advance for any possible omission).CREDITS:

Architectural Concept
Pedro Alvarado · Marco Barrera Bassols ·José María Bilbao · El Charco del Ingenio

Architectural Design:
Pedro Alvarado · Studio 15B

Engineers and Work:
Jacinto Estrada · EMAG Ingeniería

Museum Design
Marco Barrera Bassols · MUSEUM

Gardening and landscapìng:
El Charco del Ingenio · Louis Franke · Vivero Magueyes

Fountain Sculpture:
Eduardo Olbés

Gift Shop (Furniture)
Francisco Mota

 Donors:

Montemiro · Gillian & Peter Neumeier Foundation · Community Foundation for Monterey · San Miguel Community Foundation · Hernán Drobny

Kahren & Michael Arbitman · Mark Deutschmann · Regine & François Sicart · Susan Edelstein · Unitarian Universalist Fellowship · Vanguard Charitable · Maria & Goerdt Abel · Ronald Thomae

William Peters · Terry & Jack Reinhart · Francisco Ríos Jiménez · Richard Gullan · Linda Whyman · Barbara Erickson · Honey Sharp · Fisher Weisman · Andy Blair · William Lee Ginager · Carolyn Stutts · C. Jobe · Culp King · Christopher Hixson · Mónica Gerez · Carol Jackson · Margot Dufrene Ketz · Eduardo Adame · QR Minerales

Kenneth L. Hillenburg · Leon Horowitz · Stephen Livingstone · Michael Pope · Marilyn Link · Christine McReynolds · Jimena Giménez Cacho · Ray Miles · John Chapman · William Lipsey · Steven Goldstein · Joshua Ehrlich · Rod & Glenna Copeland · Alfredo Alcántara · Phyllis Pitluga · Ed Laun · Richard Mason · Joy Levine · Viktor Hackl · Mathew Carroll · Daniel Neuspiel · David Zi Enterprises · Richard Plewa · Luke Rich · Dale Braiman · Robert Merchasin · Gregory Diamant · Klaus Schmidt · Weston Young · Deborah Chlebana · George Yatskievych · Alberto González Varela · Emiliano Sánchez · Kathleen Sheperd · Naomi Zurcher

SPRING EQUINOX 2022

OPERA IN EL CHARCO
Ópera Portátil Company
Sunday, March 20, 5:30 p.m.
Access from 4:30 p.m.
El Charco del Ingenio Canyon Natural Forum

APOIDEA, BRIEF HEXAGONAL OPERA

For many years the spring equinox has meant for El Charco the welcoming to the new rhythm that nature sets. We celebrate 31 years of resistance protecting this beautiful natural monument and we want to celebrate the annual festival of the Earth in a special way in the natural forum of the Charco del Ingenio canyon. We invite you to share in this celebration, financially supporting the Botanical Garden by purchasing a ticket, to enjoy a show of high artistic quality.

“Apoidea, brief hexagonal opera” is a contemporary Mexican work based on the characters of the natural world. Originally dedicated to children, the opera is of general interest due to the theme it deals with and the theatricality of its characters, so that adults will enjoy it as much as children.

Portable Opera is the company, from Mexico City, invited to perform in the natural forum of the canyon. It is made up of professional actors and musicians, who will envelop us with their songs and stage acts harmonized with an extraordinary musical accompaniment

Sunday, March 20, 5:30 p.m.
Access from 4:30 p.m.
-General Public: 500 pesos
-Members: 400 pesos
-Children (under 1.30m): 100 pesos
Point of sale: Reception of the Botanical Garden (from March 1)
IMPORTANT: We recommend purchasing your tickets in advance. THERE WILL BE NO TICKET SALE ON THE DAY OF THE EVENT.
*We remind the public that it is not allowed to enter with food and drinks, and smoking is prohibited on the site.

EL CHARCO DEL INGENIO TAKES OVER THE PRESIDENCY OF THE MEXICAN ASSOCIATION OF BOTANICAL GARDENS

On February 24, during the annual assembly of the Association that brings together and articulates the work of the botanical gardens of Mexico, El Charco del Ingenio was elected to occupy the leading chair of this important organization. In this way, we received from the Clavijero Ethnobotanical Garden, dependent on the Institute of Ecology that operates in Jalapa, Veracruz, the responsibility of leading the association for a period of three years.

Likewise, during the assembly the new Board of Directors of the Mexican Association of Botanical Gardens was voted unanimously, being organized as follows:
– President: M. in C. Mario A. Hernández, El Charco del Ingenio
– Administrative Secretary: M. en C. José Viccon, El Charco del Ingenio
– Administrative Secretary: Lic. Marisa Ávalos, El Charco del Ingenio
– Educational Secretary: M. in C. Carmen Cecilia Hernández, Botanical Garden of the Institute of Biology of the UNAM, CDMX
– Scientific Secretary: M. en C. Erika Pagaza, Botanical Garden of Culiacán, Sinaloa
– Treasurer: C. P. Verónica Sagelín Hernández, El Charco del Ingenio
– Member at Large: Biol. Jesús Escalante, Botanical Garden of Los Mochis, Sinaloa
– Member at Large: Biol. Mónica Rivas Avendaño, Haravéri Botanical Garden, Jalisco
– Member at Large: M. in C. Hermes Lacustre, Cassiano Conzatti Botanical Garden, Oaxaca

The new appointments make up a diverse and qualified team for the tasks of the Association and its representation in Mexico and abroad. Iit also places the state of Guanajuato as a biodiverse territory, recognizing the trajectory of El Charco Ethnobotanical Garden during its 30 years of existence.

The new El Charco Visitor Guide

The new design of this guide – in Spanish and English – allows the visitor to explore and discover the spacious area of the botanical garden and access magnificent views of El Charco natural monument. The guide contains a suggested tour and shows a network of trails, accessible and guarded, in addition to offering information about the various points of interest in the reservation: exhibitions of plants, viewpoints, sanctuaries of birds, historical ruins …

NEW SPECIES OF ORCHID IN THE BOTANICAL GARDEN

The Walter L. Meagher Herbarium (WLM) houses a collection of 1,640 specimens, mainly from the state of Guanajuato. Being the only herbarium in the state, its importance in register and study of the flora is of great relevance for scientific research. This collection has been integrated over 7 years, devoting efforts to collection, herborization, identification and systematization of botanical specimens.

As part of the Herbarium activities, Dr. Gerardo Salazar, orchid specialist and head of the National Herbarium of Mexico (MEXU), was invited to the Garden in 2021. During his stay he was able to identify and confirm species of the Orchidaceae (Orchids) family, as well as record a new species for El Charco: Sarcoglottis schaffneri, increasing the list of native orchids in the Garden.

On the other hand, during the month of June 2021, the biologist Nelly Sandoval, a researcher of the Dalea genus at the University of Querétaro, identified, confirmed and discarded those plants that do not belong to this genus of legumes. These detailed reviews with specialists in certain botanical groups allow the Herbarium to update the scientific names of the plants in the herborized collection.

“We do not pretend to change the world, we just want to blossom” – Clarice Lispector

In this prelude of Spring, watch the stunning inflorescence of Pseudobombax ellipticum, next time you come to El Charco’s Conservatory of Mexican Plants.

NATURAL HISTORY TOURS ARE BACK

Every Tuesday and Thursday at 10am – in English
Tickets are 150pesos for non-members and 100p for members
Don’t forget your face mask, please.

SOUL GIFTS, MUSICAL GIFTS: THANK YOU, MICHAEL HOPPÉ

It is quite moving to see the ways in which people and sectors of our community support El Charco del Ingenio, a territory that has given peace, joy and nature to its users and visitors during the months of the pandemic.
Michael Hoppé is a recognized composer and musical producer, born in the United Kingdom and inhabitant of San Miguel since the 80s. As an active member of the Botanical Garden, Michael has recently offered a lovely gift to El Charco, inspired by his daily walks by the trails of the preserve, in the company of his wife Monica. The composition “Beneath Mexican Stars” is a musical piece that can go back to the most beautiful landscapes of Mexico or a night walk through the cobblestone streets of San Miguel.

Listen here:

SCIENCE AND ART IN THE BOTANICAL GARDEN

NEW SET OF 12 POSTCARDS: BUTTERFLIES AND MOTHS OF EL CHARCO

Graphic work of four creative women from San Miguel de Allende:

Marijose Marín, Marisol Guerrero, Paquina Langenscheidt and Rocío Ríos
Available in our gift shop: 300 pesos