Project proposal: Conservation of historic gardens under a global change scenario

National Research Council
Institute for Sustainable Plant Protection and  Municipality of Bologna are looking for ASCE members as partners in a new EU funded project.

The consequences of global climate change are occurring in all European countries from North to South: extreme weather events with storms and cloudbursts, and increasingly frequent droughts, are environmental phenomena that affect the status of historical gardens and suggest to urgently develop new measures and best practices for conservation.

In recent years, concern for the survival of cultural heritage for the future has led scientists and curators to address the issues of climate change at an early stage in several European projects (for example: ProteCHt2save (Interreg Central Europe); STORM (H2020-DRS-2015); HERACLES (H2020-DRS-2015)).

In spite of the great importance of these sites, investigations on historic gardens/monumental cemeteries have not yet addressed the topic of conservation and preservation of stone artifacts under a global change scenario. As early as 2002 the National Trust (UK), which looks after 230 gardens in England and Wales, commissioned a study on historic gardens in “the global greenhouse” and drew up a program for setting environmental standards in garden care; however, this study only considered the question from the point of view of vegetation. Up to now, no studies have been carried out on this specific topic, namely the conservation of historic gardens under a global change scenario, which takes into consideration both the plant conservation and preservation, including that of historical specimens (particularly when in endangered conditions), and the maintenance of stone artifacts.

The aim of this proposal is to promote new researches in a multi-disciplinary framework and to bring together research findings on the preservation and conservation of vegetation and stone artifacts. The final goal is to provide technical guidelines for a new concept of management in historical gardens, and in particular in monumental cemeteries, which also considers the interaction between living components (plants) and stone material.

More about the project and contacts for partnership can be obtained in this document.