Photo by David Sommers
It seemed like Mission: Impossible—moving eight trees, some two stories tall and 100 years old, out of the Margaret C. Ferguson Greenhouses to temporary new digs. But last July, the Botanic Gardens staff did just that, with help from professional tree movers, College workers, a Bobcat compact excavator, and a crane. Sections of the glass walls were cut away, the roots were carefully trimmed and balled, and out the trees went, most by crane or excavator to the Science Center, and one to a greenhouse at the nearby Hunnewell Estate.
The reason for such an elaborate moving day? The 92-year-old Ferguson Greenhouses had become structurally unsound. They are being taken down, and next spring, a gleaming (and sustainable) new greenhouse, Global Flora, will rise. “Within those transparent walls will be a spectacular confluence of science and art, a platform for cutting-edge research and teaching in a place of inspiring beauty,” says Kristina Niovi Jones, director of the College’s Botanic Gardens.