Garden Story: Episode 10 - The Garden as Protector of the Planet| 26mins
Director: Bill Reifenberger | Producer: Bill Reifenberger
Focus Years: 2008 | Country: United States
This program depicts the extraordinary efforts of the Missouri Botanical Garden to preserve and protect our natural environment on a local, regional, and international scale. It explores the many facets of the garden's vital mission to promote biodiversity through its outstanding programs in scientific research, conservation, sustainable development, and public education. The program corrects the popular misconception of a botanical garden as merely a kind of zoo for plant life or a showcase for dazzling botanical displays. It also expands the viewer's awareness of the crucial role a botanical garden can play in the stewardship of the earth by focusing on the history and present-day activities of the nation's oldest botanical garden west of the Mississippi, which is the largest center for plant research in the world. The storyline takes the shape of a double helix, intertwining narratives about Henry Shaw, the 19th-century visionary founder of the garden, and Peter H. Raven, the eminent director, whose inspirational leadership and global perspective have magnified the focus of the institution to make it a global leader for the 21st century. The episode places particular emphasis on what Peter H. Raven calls the â€œUnseen Gardenâ€, the many conservation, education, and research agendas that are not immediately apparent to visitors. This portion of the program showcases such things as the work of the Center for Plant Conservation, the worldwide initiatives of the Center for Conservation and Sustainable Development, and the garden's extraordinary herbarium and rare books collection. â€œGarden Story" is a documentary series depicting the extraordinary power of gardens to transform our lives and strengthen our communities. Ten engaging episodes filmed across America profile a wide variety of remarkable gardens. Some are creating positive social change in our cities, while others are protecting our natural environment. Among the exceptional gardens featured are therapeutic gardens providing healing and stress reduction in medical facilities, community gardens renewing urban neighborhoods, a teaching garden for inner-city children, a world-famous botanical garden supporting a global agenda of environmental stewardship, and a wet-lands habitat garden preserving endangered species in a rare mountain ecosystem. "Garden Story" challenges common perceptions of what defines a garden and explores the many different roles that gardens play in today's world.