Pandora’s Brash Space Botanist

by Dana Gourley on August 14, 2017

in Human Interest Stories, Nature

Sigourney Weaver’s character, Dr. Grace Augustine, in Avatar is one of my all-time favorite movie heroes. Grace is a brash, opinionated and confident leader guiding her team members into the fascinating and dangerous jungle of Pandora. Her character dispels the common opinion that botanists are both quiet and unadventurous, which I know from professional experience is not always accurate. With the true heart of a botanist, when Grace is mortally wounded and realizing she is part of the Tree of Souls, she says, looking up in the tree, “I need to get some samples”! It might have been a corny thing to say, but to me, it was a bountiful harvest.

It appears that the new Pandora adventure at Disney’s Animal Kingdom is receiving good reviews. We plan on visiting this Fall to check out the Imagineers’ Pandora plants (over 20 species and dozens of subspecies) that cast a warm glow which illuminate the jungle at night. Unfortunately, collection of samples are not allowed.

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