In what ways are cemeteries like parks? How tall should the grass in a cemetery be allowed to grow? Following up on some of the themes from our discussion with NYC Microseasons about urban plants, animals, and fungi not typically thought of as farms or gardens, Melissa talks with Joseph (Joe) Charap, Vice President of Horticulture at the Green-Wood Cemetery, about the history of cemeteries as green spaces in NYC and the broader United States.
They discuss the rich and biodiverse ecosystem found at Green-Wood—which comprises over 8,000 trees of over 800 species, including many native species! Joe and Melissa talk about everything from “charismatic megaflora” (trees) to turfgrass, touching on long-term scientific collaborations with Cornell, different kinds of green burials (including mushroom burials, which are not yet practiced in Brooklyn), “Sweet Hereafter” honey, and what exactly a “managed meadow” is. What could be a somber subject is instead a lively and dynamic conversation that you won’t want to miss!
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