Last February 6, the Marimurtra Botanical Garden received the visit of Mrs. Inés Jiménez, Councilor for the Environment of the Cabildo de Gran Canaria. The context of the visit was marked by the events preceding the double commemoration of the 75th anniversary of the creation of the Viera y Clavijo Botanical Garden, in Gran Canaria, and the 50th anniversary of the death of its creator, the Swede Erik Svensson, later known as Sventenius. Both anniversaries will take place in 2024.
The reception that was organized revolved around the figure of Sventenius, since from 1935 to 1940 he was the gardener and botanist of Marimurtra. A close collaborator of Carl Faust who had, among other things, the haphazard task of running the Marimurtra Botanical Garden through the Spanish Civil War, a task he did successfully while ensuring its survival. To do so, he even went so far as to hang the Swedish flag at the entrance to the Garden to declare it a neutral zone and protect it from attacks from both sides.
Sventenius was a prolific gardener and scientist specializing in cacti who also lived a phase of his life collecting and sorting around the monastery of Montserrat until he moved to the Canary Islands. There he first became involved with the Orotava acclimatization garden and later was the promoter of the Veira y Clavijo de Gran Canaria botanical garden until his untimely death in 1974.
The reception consisted of a description of the figure of Svenenius elaborated by the historian of science and patron of the Carl Faust Foundation, Josep Maria Camarasa. The president of the Cristòfol Jordà Foundation was in charge of reading it in front of the Environment Minister himself and other authorities invited to the event, such as Ms. Sofia Geli Stenhammer, consul of Sweden in Barcelona, and Mrs. Marina Vall-llosada, Councilor for the Environment of Blanes City Council. The patrons Mr. Joaquim Valls and Mr. Rafel Ferrer, in addition to the current director of the Viera y Clavijo botanical garden, and former researcher of Marimurtra, Mr. Juli Caujapé
From this fruitful meeting, the foundations have been laid to bring to terms more actions of collaboration between the two botanical gardens, both for the celebrations related to Sventenius and in other areas of common interest.