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Docent Days: a garden tour guide in training

March 3, 2009
Herb Garden, 8:48 a.m., 3 March 2009

Herb Garden, 8:48 a.m., 3 March 2009

I started something new today: a 13-week course in how to be a Cornell Plantations tour guide. “Docent” sounds so weirdly formal, but they call it a living museum. Since I’m going to be there now every Tuesday until the end of May, it seemed like a good way to catalog the change from winter to summer. And another catalog is just what we all need, right? So I’ll try to take the same view of the herb garden and the old schoolhouse each week, along with details of what’s happening outside. Today it was faint snow and about a -3 wind chill.

I once saw a Sierra Club volunteer guide in Red Rock point out an agave roasting pit to a bunch of nodding hikers, and then lead the whole pack right through the middle of it. When it comes my turn, may I please not do serious damage.

i can tell the plant tags are going to start to annoy us

i can tell the plant tags are going to start to annoy us

Mullestein Winter Garden east

Mullestein Winter Garden east

classroom window and the Bigleaf Magnolia in waiting

classroom window and the Bigleaf Magnolia in waiting

i think i stepped on a frozen plant to take this. bad docent!

i think i stepped on a frozen plant to take this. bad docent!

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6 Comments leave one →
  1. March 4, 2009 9:32 pm

    Gotta start posting your tour guide hours when you start taking groups around so I know when to bring out of town guests to Plantations. What a great way to learn. You better believe I’m going to pick your brain.

    Check this out: http://eirikso.com/2008/12/27/one-year-worth-of-images-give-some-amazing-videos/

    I want to try this really bad but am afraid that I’m not going to have the discipline to get the series of photos of my own garden. If you gat the images from Plantations, I’ll try stitching them together for you.

  2. March 5, 2009 12:36 pm

    Hi Craig–I thought it would be a good learning experience, too, about plants and people. That video is incredible! I hadn’t seen it before. I like how he shows his simple setup and all the steps to stitch them. Hmmm. In the back of my brain I had some idea of how to display the turning seasons but this beats all. Discipline would be the thing, wouldn’t it. I’ll see if I can try to mark a spot to always stand and get the same view. What a nice outcome to share! Thanks for the link :)

  3. March 5, 2009 6:47 pm

    i have the biggest smile on my face right now…! i can’t think of a more perfect place for you to show off your latest botanizing skills, and can only imagine the amazing images you’ll soon capture there… i might just have to schedule a tour myself – can i get in on craig’s tour?!
    xox!

  4. March 7, 2009 8:22 pm

    This sounds like great fun ~ what interesting work this will be! And it will be enjoyable viewing your photos…

  5. March 9, 2009 6:15 pm

    Applause, applause, applause! Your foray into people herding and public speaking is totally inspiring. I’ll look forward to the time lapse photos too – I can never settle on just one place to shoot from at work but I love that idea… And, btw the new blog theme looks great and I have to laugh because just this morning I obsessed about maybe changing mine to this very one!

Trackbacks

  1. Docent Days: Wrap up « Sin City to Slaterville

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