Mendelís Genetic Garden
The protected monument garden of the Augustinian monastery adjoins the western part of the refectory of the abbey and covers almost 2 ha. It is walled in on the northern and eastern sides, a brewery is located on its western side, and a public road is on its southern side.
The primary objective of the project is to restore the garden in which Mendel carried out his famous experiments. The consultants for its renewal are professor John S. Parker, head of the Botanical Gardens of the Cambridge University in England in collaboration with professor Ladislav Havel from the Mendel Agricultural and Forest University in Brno and arch. Eva Jiricna.
The intent is to create a new garden on the location of the old one that will denote Mendelís principles of heredity in a beautiful and educational manner. Visitors will thus have the opportunity to become acquainted with G. J. Mendel in an extensive context thanks to professional presentations by schooled tour guides.
This will be an appealing place for both residents of and visitors to Brno, who will be able to utilize these beautiful surroundings not only for relaxation but also for education.
The project was commenced in the spring of 2003. Mendelís work was presented via an exhibition of historic varieties of fuchsias, Mendelís favourite plants, together with a showing of mutated forms of his experimental plant - peas.
Further, necessary maintenance was carried out on the Mendel Garden complex in order to make Mendelís apiary (beehive) accessible.
The renewal of Mendelís apiary under the leadership of senior lecturer VladimŪr PtŠcek from the Natural Sciences Faculty of Masaryk University is a reminder of Mendelís interest in beekeeping.
In collaboration with the abbey, the Mendel Centre and Brnoís bee keepers, it was possible to put the apiary in order. The vegetation close to the apiary was liquidated and the old fencing was removed. This was replaced by a new fence and gate. The apiary roof was renewed along with the gutters and rainwater drains. Rotted beams in the ceiling were replaced, boarding renewed, the front wood structure and boards for the placement of the hives were renewed and painted, the emergency WC was renewed and painted, and the basement was cleaned up. The location in front of the apiary was revitalized with beekeeping and is cared for by Doc. Ptacek.
All this required considerable work and financing, which cannot be regretted because many domestic and foreign tourists are very interested in the apiary.
During the past few years the monument location of European culture was visited by guests from literally the entire world (Japan, Canada, the USA, Israel, England, Germany, Austria, Poland...).
The bees are kept in various types of hives, which enables research into beekeeping and beekeeping excursions. The bees also serve as material for the teaching of Applied Physiology of Insects at the Natural Sciences Faculty of Masaryk University.
In 2004, a competition for the students of garden architecture at the Mendel Agricultural and Forest University in Brno took place. The winner took part in the creation of the final design with architect Eva JiricnŠ. The objective was the architectural design of the entire abbey garden complex having a genetic theme.
Phase 3 - 2005 and the following years
This means the completion of the illustrative parts of the garden and also the culmination of the entire Mendelís Genetic Garden project.
Depending on the financing that will be received, the following will be built:
1. A demonstrative bed in front of the entrance to the Museum.
This is a new concept of a bed that will be based on the design of prof. Parker of Cambridge University and will be planted with white and blue varieties of Linum perenne, on which visitors will be shown the heredity principles that Mendel discovered.
2. A demonstrative bed in front of the former orangery,
where prof. Ammerer designed a many-coloured Antirrhinum for illustrating the transfer of dominant and recessive hereditary traits to the following generation of plants.
design: Iva Mlejnková