Sustainability, Literature Intersect in Shakespeare Garden

Sustainability, Literature Intersect in Shakespeare Garden
Sustainability, Literature Intersect in Shakespeare Garden

June 07, 2019

Our Blough-Weis Library, members of the Class of 2022 and the Office of Sustainability teamed up to plant an edible Shakespeare garden on campus.

A Shakespearean garden is simply a garden that contains plants mentioned in Shakespeare’s writings.

The garden contains some of the 175 plants and herbs mentioned in Shakespeare's writings.

“If we were going to do a class project, I wanted to enrich the sustainability around campus and also include the students in it and make something interactive," sophomore biology major Maddi Laubscher, of Watsontown, Pennsylvania, said of the Class of 2022’s involvement.

Other participants were music education major Marnie Brubaker, of Milroy, Pennsylvania; early childhood education major Tara Gardner, of McClure, Pennsylvania; and marketing major Jimmy Beaver, of Milroy, Pennsylvania.

Susquehanna’s Shakespeare garden complements the Blough-Weis Library’s Jane Conrad Apple Rare Books Room, which focuses on the life and works of William Shakespeare and the Elizabethan and Tudor periods. The collection includes a number of first and limited editions as well as rare books from the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries. 

When complete, Susquehanna’s Shakespeare garden will include marjoram (King Lear), parsley (The Taming of the Shrew) and rosemary (Hamlet), as well as calendula (The Winter’s Tale), hyssop (Othello) and much more.

“Herbs were a great way to get started and have a structure that will go from year to year,” said Meg Garnett, special collections librarian who researched Shakespeare’s writings and selected the plants for the garden.

The garden will also include signage that identifies the plant and how it was used in Shakespeare’s writings.

“We hope that through this we can encourage students to take from the garden and use it for whatever they want to,” Laubscher said.

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