After the Brooklyn Botanic Garden made cuts to its science staff last month, the fate of botanical research at the institution could be in serious jeopardy. Citing issues with its off-site Science Center building and increasing expenses, a spokeswoman for BBG told DNAinfo that its research is just on hiatus, but neighbor Chris Kreussling, aka Flatbush Gardener, is worried it’s more than that.
In a petition he’s started asking BBG’s Board of Directors to “restore science as a priority,” Chris cites a pattern by BBG that he says shows a shift away from science: no science positions filled when they’ve been vacated and the demotion of some science staff positions, while areas like fundraising and marketing have expanded, and major infrastructure projects have flourished.
“BBG has raised tens of millions of dollars of funding for these projects,” Chris writes. “But nothing for science.”
As of this morning, the petition has about 170 signatures, many with comments.
“The outreach of Greenbridge to bring gardening to underserved communities has been fantastic,” writes neighbor Tracey Hohman in her petition signature, noting that she is a member and volunteer at BBG. “Education and research should still stand at the forefront of BBG’s mission, otherwise it is just another pretty place. BBG is turning in Disneyland.”
There are still some science staffers at BBG, and according to the Daily News, they are looking for a temporary home for the sensitive plant library.
For some more info and to sign the petition, see it here.