Newsletter September 2023


NEW PLANT DISCOVERED IN EL CHARCO DEL INGENIO

. Viridantha minuscula, a species of Bromeliad with no previous record

The discovery of new plant species is not common nowadays, especially in populated territories studied by botanists for centuries, such as the region of San Miguel de Allende in the state of Guanajuato. For this reason, the discovery of a new plant species, already confirmed by specialized scientific institutions, is very relevant news. This plant was sighted on the cliffs of El Charco del Ingenio by José Viccon, official biologist from the Botanical Garden, for several years. Resembling two species of the Bromeliad family, of the Tillandsia genus (locally known as paxtle, gallitos, heno), it turned out to be a new species of the Viridantha, according to studies carried out by experts over several years and recently published in the journal Internationa Phytotaxa

This small plant is only 8 cm tall including its inflorescence, which stands out for the striking pinkish color of its bracts, and which was what gave Viccon the key to its taxonomic differentiation. Unlike other species of bromeliads that proliferate in trees, Viridantha minuscula grows on rocks, adapted to dry and sunny conditions.  

As it is the first formal study of this new species, it is considered micro endemic to El Charco del Ingenio, with very small communities that will require population and ecology studies to advance its knowledge. It is essential that society and decision makers appreciate the importance of naming new species for floristic studies and for conservation of the natural world.  


THE HERBARIA OF MEXICO IN EL CHARCO DEL INGENIO

During the last days of August El Charco del Ingenio hosted curators, researchers and staff from these scientific institutions in the National Meeting of Herbaria, held at the Botanical Garden. Besides achieving its mail goal –which was the digitization, database management and assessment of botanical collections– the meeting allowed institutional relations among different herbaria from Mexico. 


ART EXHIBIT “NOSTALGIA FOR NATURE” MARIBEL PORTELA

Starting July 28th

BOTANICAL GARDEN INTEPRETIVE HALL

We are pleased to present the recent work, especially prepared for El Charco del Ingenio, by this renowned Mexican plastic artist, whose creativity exceeds the limits of conventional artistic activity. Her work is closely related to nature, which she uses as a formal and symbolic vehicle to display transformation processes through our interaction with it. As a result of this link, Maribel Portela's sculpture builds artificial organic prototypes and models. Manipulating common and natural materials, the artist builds natural imaginaries, whose infinite forms incite a playful and provocative experience in the viewer, in the form of aesthetic utopias of a world that is succumbing.

Maribel Portela has a very extensive artistic career: more than 43 individual exhibitions plus participation in more than 100 collective exhibitions, both in Mexico and cities in Europe, Asia, Africa, South America and the United States. She is a member of the National System of Creators since 2001, has carried out artistic residencies outside the country and her collections are found in various museums in Mexico, Puerto Rico, Denmark, Canada and the United States.


MEDICINAL PLANTS USED IN THE NORTH OF GUANAJUATO

Workshop given by ROSITA ARVIGO

Saturday September 23 / 10 am / Free admission

Contribution: 50 pesos per person (Access to the Botanical Garden)
Limited availability

The Botanical Garden receives the visit of Dr. Rosita Arvigo, who with her extensive experience in medicinal plants, offers a lecture masterfully conducted in Spanish and English. We invite the public to enjoy this entertaining conversation where traditional knowledge and herbal medicine are combined to connect us with plants and their health benefits.

It is also possible to purchase the book Medicinal Plants of Northern Guanajuato, which will be on sale the day of the talk. A beautifully illustrated, bilingual issue documenting the herbal remedies that continue to be used in the central highlands of Mexico. Its pages describe the preparation and administration of home remedies with plants that can be found in the market, pots, streets, patios in the region and, of course, in El Charco del Ingenio.


In the natural settings of Charco del Ingenio

En los escenarios naturales del Charco del Ingenio

UNAM CEPE-Taxco Educational Center 

Stage direction: maestro Flavio

Wednesday 27 and Thursday 28 September

"Voice of the Earth" 

Wednesday September 27 / 5pm  

 Free admission

Scenic proposal suggesting a reflection about the carelessness in which our home --the Earth-- finds itself, taking maize as a starting point, a prodigious plant grown from and a main food for Mexicans. 

“Los perros” based on the play written by Elena Garro

Thursday September 28 / 5pm 

Ticket: 50 pesos 

Play in one act written by one of the most important authors in Mexico. This staging addresses issues that are still current such as poverty and inequality suffered by women in a patriarchal context. 


IN OCTOBER: THE BOTANICAL GARDENS OF MEXICO IN SAN MIGUEL DE ALLENDE

Botanical gardens play a fundamental role for plant conservation and environmental education.

The Mexican Association of Botanical Gardens (AMJB) was founded in 1980 and since then, it convenes and integrates the botanical gardens of the country to promote the relationship between them and reaffirm their participation with society. It also organizes an annual meeting where, through presentations, workshops and assemblies, criteria and decisions are unified for the achievement of common objectives

To take place during October 3 – 7 El Charco del Ingenio-Jardín Botánico

More information: https://elcharco.org.mx/xxxvi-reunion-anual-y-asamblea…/


September, The Month Of The Flowers  

Whoever has visited El Charco during the month of September will not forget the profusion and diversity of the aromatic and multicolored flowers on the green meadows at the end of the the rainy season. Flowers sprout from the trees and shrubs and the low ones line the paths like carpets of lilac, white, yellow, red, and orange, along the sides of the canyon and the presa and generally throughout all of El Charco. Along with the flowers is a large diversity of pollinating insects such as butterflies rivaling the flowers in color. In this month when the center of town is bustling with festivals and celebrations, a morning escape to El Charco is highly recommended – or a late afternoon walk to admire, among other things, the magnificent sunset over San Miguel, the Rio Laja valley and the mountains of Guanajuato. A spectacular month for flowers, insects, sunsets, water cascading over the dam. 

It's the best season to explore the trails with the new Wildflower Guide. 

Ask for it on your next visit to the Botanical Garden. 


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 has been consolidated and strengthened over the years. 

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


NEW PUBLICATIONS!

ASK FOR THESE BOOKS ON YOUR NEXT VISIT TO THE BOTANICAL GARDEN


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


CHARCO BIRDWALKS


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.