Sustainability and Literature Intersect

Members of the Class of 2022 teamed up with staff from the Blough-Weis Library and the Office of Sustainability to plant an edible Shakespeare garden on campus.

A Shakespearean garden is simply a garden that 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,” says Maddi Laubscher ’22, of Watsontown, Pennsylvania, of the Class of 2022’s involvement.

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.

Susquehanna’s Shakespeare garden includes 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,” says Meg Garnett, special collections librarian who researched Shakespeare’s writings and selected the plants for the garden.

The garden also includes signs that identify each 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 says.



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