Cherokee Garden takes shape

By Diane Palmer

Woman shoveling new gardenA new garden at the S.C. Botanical Garden reflects the Native American view of nature. Lecturer Karen Hall is coordinating its creation, based on her studies with the Eastern Band of the Cherokee. A grant from the Provost’s Innovation Fund and volunteers from Clemson faculty, staff and students are bringing her vision to life. 

“While interviewing Cherokee elders about how they use plants, I discovered that they have a significantly different view of the natural world than we do,” said Hall. “Their worldview encompasses direction, water, significant numbers and balance. Medicine is physical, spiritual and mental. Being out of balance in any of these areas implies illness.”

In the garden near the Campbell Geology Museum a circular structure represents the connectedness of medicine and balance while a stream of gravel represents water. 

For information: Karen Hall, 864-656-0721,