Friday, 15 May 2009

TV Science in the Gardens


The leaves of my favourite Brazilian rainforest tree, to be featured in Catalyst next month.

The sun was shining and the Catalyst sound and camera crew available, so Paul Willis and I could finally take our walk in the Gardens. It was one of the last shots needed to complete the 7-8 minute story on Sydney's Royal Botanic Gardens and its science.

Of course filming took more than 8 minutes... This was the third day Catalyst had spent in the Gardens. Last time they were here the rain drove them indoors, into my office and the herbarium. They also found the Molecular Laboratory and interviewed Peter Weston about the evolution of proteas and the like. In the Herbarium they spoke to Louisa Murray, and in the Library Miguel Garcia, I think.

In my office? We talked about algae of course, but also the history of the botanic gardens and how it all started. In case it rained, we also filmed the final segments, but producer Max Lloyd was keen to get back out into the Gardens and do it again.

Today was the day. Paul and I were filmed walking down garden paths and waxing lyrically about various plants (we'd already discussed in the earlier shoots the palm Pritchardia maideniana, my favourite Brazilian tree Chrysophyllum imperiale, and of course that old stalwart the Wollemi Pine). Then a chat in the Fern House, in fading light but flourishing mosquito activity.

Of course some of this will end up on the floor in Ultimo, but I'm looking forward to seeing our science and gardens featured on Catalyst on 18 June.

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