An Educational Excursion to the Mundy Wildflower Garden

As part of an initiative to have weekly outdoor learning opportunities during the summer, a group from TWMLA recently took advantage of the gorgeous weather to visit the Mundy Wildflower Garden of the Cornell Botanic Gardens. Guided by Krissy Boys, the Wildflower Garden’s Natural Areas Horticulturalist, the group learned firsthand about native plant communities and their use in recent streambank restoration efforts, the reestablishment of the forest understory, and the creation of a native lawn demonstration area.

The tour afforded the TWMLA team the opportunity to study the forested slopes, floodplain forest, and wetland meadow habitats that compose the Mundy Wildflower Garden, which is known for its exceptional native plant diversity. During the tour, Krissy described the steps involved in recent streambank stabilization efforts, which included the removal of invasive-containing soils, their replacement with sand and gravel typical of streamside habitats, and the establishment of a new community of cool- and warm-season grasses that thrive in the dry and rocky site. Another highlight was learning about the native lawn, which is a demonstration of how to use low-growing native grasses as a more sustainable alternative to conventional lawns.

We are excited to use what we learned on our tour of the Mundy Wildflower Garden as we develop designs suited to both the intended use of sites as well as their niches within the diverse plant communities of New York State. The knowledge gained is especially relevant for a number of current TWMLA projects, which are increasingly incorporating habitat restoration as a design imperative.

TWMLA would like to again thank Krissy Boys for sharing her time and knowledge with us!

Read more about the Mundy Wildflower Garden.