Newsletter March 2023


SPRING EQUINOX CONCERT: TRADITION AND CUMBIA IN THE CANYON

For many years the spring equinox has meant for El Charco the welcome to the new rhythm that marks nature. We celebrate 32 years of resistance protecting this beautiful natural monument and we want to celebrate happiness and hope Earth provides and as every year, in the canyon, our natural forum of the Charco del Ingenio.

We invite you to share this celebration, financially supporting the Botanical Garden by buying a ticket, to enjoy a show of high artistic quality. The group Moros y Cristianos, an ensemble that mixes the ancestral voices of the peoples with the most contemporary sound possibilities.

It is made up of Mexican ethnomusicologists, composers and dancers who will delight us with the joy of a universal musical journey.

Come and dance with this harmonization of instruments that achieve a magnificent sound in a natural setting.

Saturday, March 18, 5:30 pm

Access to site 5:00 pm

Tickets: Reception of the Botanical Garden (There will not be tickets for sale on the day of the concert)

General ticket: 500 pesos

Members: 400 pesos

Boys and girls, under 1.30 mt in height: Only 100 pesos

*We remind the public that smoking, food and alcoholic beverages aren’t allowed. We recommend wearing comfortable shoes and sun protection.

**The purchase of tickets is only in advance. There will be NO ticket sales on the day of the event.

** If you do not live in San Miguel de Allende and want to purchase tickets, send a mail: charcodelingeniocomunicacion@gmail.com 

NEW EXHIBITION IN THE INTERPRETIVE ROOM OF THE BOTANICAL GARDEN THE PREPONDERANCE OF THE SMALL"                                                                     

                         

"By changing scales, our perception is sharpened, we are invited to pause and look at what we do not see, we are allowed to listen to the tiny voices that would normally go unnoticed, to witness the conversation between two insects, one appreciated by humanity and one rejected by it, to finally understand that in both cases human attention derives in a devastating effect on the species."

"Speculative fiction is an important resource in this exhibition, imagining solutions to real tragedies, such as the construction of a bridge made of mycelium (the basic structure of fungi) to reconnect the interrupted passage to all small species after the construction of a massive road distributor that did not consider them in their project. The proposal is a first step towards healing what is a huge wound in the mountain and in the life and migration cycles of the fauna that inhabits it."

Esta exhibición es posible gracias a TALLER 30, Espacio Colaborativo de Ciencia y Arte de San Miguel de Allende.

THE SECRET LIFE OF INSECTS

Interpretive Walk at the Botanical Garden

Thursday 1 March, 10am (English)

Saturday 4 March, 10 am (Spanish)

Biologist and botanic garden volunteer, Jim Talbot, will explore the secret lives of insects and the roles they play in the Charco ecosystem through a walking tour of the various habitats at the garden on Wednesday, March 1, and Saturday, March 4. Starting at the Interpretive Hall and continuing along the trails, he will explain to visitors fun facts about insect pollinators, predators, and plant-eaters, and share anecdotes about insect Zombies, insects that get drunk, and insect farmers. During the walk through the various habitats we will conduct a visual survey of insect activity during the morning hours, and offer comparisons of our observations between these same habitats. Finally, we will discuss the role of insects in ancient and modern day Mexico, weaving the past and the present into a more informed perspective of these fascinating creatures.


ESPERANZA BENAVIDEZ MENDIETA, in memoriam

El Charco del Ingenio joins the mourning of the Velázquez Benavidez family and the town of Xichú, in the Sierra Gorda of Guanajuato, for the departure of Esperanza Benavídez Mendieta, Doña Pera, one of the last mountain women of the generation that came into the world in the twenties of the last century. In addition to a prodigious memory, she was the possessor of vast ancestral knowledge, and during her life she spared no effort to defend and care for the hills, plants, animals, rivers. Doña Pera had several children, highlighting among them Eliazar Velázquez, writer, chronicler and cultural promoter, and Guillermo Velázquez, legendary minstrel and troubadour, creator and mainstay of Los Leones de la Sierra de Xichú, who has revived and projected the Huapango Arribeño and Decimal Poetry beyond the horizons of the Sierra Gorda.

It fills us with pride to remember that back in 1992, the curator of plants of El Charco del Ingenio, the eminent cactologist Charles Glass, in his botanical explorations through the Sierra Gorda, met Doña Pera and was so impressed by her deep knowledge and personality, that he decided to pay tribute to her through a new botanical discovery of world significance. Thus, Glass gave the name Doña Esperanza to a subspecies of the cactus Strombocactus disciformis, being henceforth registered for the scientific world as strombocactus disciformis subsp. esperanzae Glass & S. Arias.

It remains, therefore, as an offering of the Botanical Garden of San Miguel de Allende, the name of this beautiful native plant of the Sierra Gorda to the memory of Doña Esperanza Benavídez Mendieta.


EL CHARCO DEL INGENIO, A STRENGTHENED CITIZEN PROJECT

Soon it will be 32 years of this beloved citizen, self-managed, Mexican and independent project, which has received multiple certifications, recognitions and above all is still in force and strengthened over the years. 

We invite you to enjoy this video and share it with your friends.


RENOVATION OF THE SOLAR OBSERVATORY (SOLAR CALENDAR AND CLOCK)

Come and rediscover this interesting spot in El Charco del Ingenio. 

In this observatory we can record important dates such as the equinoxes, solstices and zenith points throughout the year. We can know what day and what time it is because a sunbeam is pointing at us on the floor marked with a series of lines... But -since we know that it is not the Sun that is moving-, in reality it is an Observatory of the Earths Movement.


PARTICIPATION OF EL CHARCO IN THE FESTIVAL OF OTOMI LANGUAGE, ART AND CULTURE

Con el objetivo de visibilizar, valorar, dignificar, fortalecer y revitalizar la lengua, arte, cultura, cosmovisión, historia y memoria biocultural del pueblo otomí, así como de todos los pueblos originarios de México y América, se llevó a cabo este encuentro festivo con un nutrido programa de actividades en la ciudad de Querétaro. El Charco, a partir de su dimensión etnobotánica, fue invitado a presentar las más recientes publicaciones editoriales sobre cucharilla, flores silvestres y herbolaria regional, así como una conferencia sobre tortillas ceremoniales y la proyección de cápsulas animadas sobre la cosmovisión otomí de la naturaleza. 

The event brought together musicians, poets, academics, writers, promoters and cultural activists, within the framework of the International Mother Language Day.

We thank the Faculty of Philosophy, the Department of Indigenous Law and the Ñañho Department for Environmental and Social Sciences of the Autonomous University of Querétaro for the invitation and work in the organization of the festival.


ARTISTIC GLANCES ON MEXICAN NATURE

10 SILKSCREENS FOR EL CHARCO DEL INGENIO

 
Del 22 de febrero al 16 de abril
Entrada Libre

In 1997, when the San Miguel del Allende Botanical Garden accomplished its first years of life, a group of renowned artists from the national scene made graphic work in silkscreen aiming to support the environmental conservation initiative of El Charco del Ingenio. Ten creators generously acknowledged the request of Cante AC –the organization then responsible for the Botanical Garden.

The outcome was a set of 10 silkscreen works, printed in Jan Hendrix workshop, all devoted to the drylands nature, an habitat where flourish marvelous plants --cacti, agave and other succulent species-– which shape a vast part of Mexican landscape and have played a core role in our ancestral history.

The list of participating artists speaks for itself: Mario Palacios Kaim, Joy Laville, Pedro Friedeberg, Sergio Hernández, Jan Hendrix, Miguel Castro Leñero, Carla Rippey, Boris Viskin, Martha Hellion y Roberto Turnbull.

Today, twenty-five years after that generous group offering, the National Institute of Fine Arts and Literature, through El Nigromante Cultural Center, exhibits the set of such graphic works, whose original artistic value increases with the passage of time. And in this way joins the Botanical Garden drive to link art and nature in pursuit of preservation of the bio-cultural heritage of Mexico

NEW PUBLICATION!

"Manejo sustentable de Dasylirion acrotrichum (Chimal, cucharilla)” is a technical manual publication that contributes to the conservation of this threatened plant, which is also a fundamental part of the ceremonies of the native peoples of the region.

This effort is only the first in a series of three publications that El Charco del Ingenio has prepared during the year 2022.

ASK FOR THIS BOOK ON YOUR NEXT VISIT TO THE BOTANICAL GARDEN

  

EL CHARCO DEL INGENIO: MEMBER OF BOTANIC GARDEN CONSERVATION INTERNATIONAL (BGCI)

Since 2005, El Charco del Ingenio has been part of Botanical Garden Conservation International , the largest network of botanical gardens and plant conservation experts in the world. Based in London,England, this organization brings together a large number of botanical gardens in more than 100 countries. Its mission is to link members to create global participatory strategies in order to ensure plant diversity, for the well-being of people and the planet.

In a country like Mexico, whose geography comprises an enormous biotic wealth, botanical gardens play a fundamental role in the knowledge and conservation of biocultural heritage.


NATURAL HISTORY TOURS IN ENGLISH

Every Tuesday and Thursday at 10 am

Ticket: 150 pesos per person / 100 pesos members


ARE BACK


ART AND SCIENCE 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

NEW IZCUINAPAN REGIONAL ARCHAEOLOGY HALL IN THE HISTORICAL MUSEUM. MIGUEL MALO ZOZAYA COLLECTION

The Botanical Garden shares and celebrates with the association Amigos del Museo this new exhibition space of the archaeological heritage of San Miguel de Allende, which was inaugurated last October in the "Casa de Allende Museum". The Sala Izcuinapan already exhibits the valuable archaeological collection gathered by Miguel Malo Zozaya, who for years studied and disseminated regional pre-Hispanic history, especially that which flourished during a period of a thousand years in the middle section of the Laja River.

After 50 years in which most of this collection left San Miguel de Allende, this extraordinary collection has returned to be safeguarded, studied, restored and exhibited permanently in the Museum.

This great effort towards recovering such important heritage derives from the confluence of diverse participants: historians, archaeologists, restorers, museographers, photographers, designers, draftsmen, activists ..., a vast collective work with the support of INAH (National Institute of Anthropology and History) and local donors.