MUSC is digging back into its own archives to create the Porcher Medicinal Garden, which serves as a piece of living history on campus. The medicinal garden is based on the works of F. Peyre Porcher, graduate and former professor at MUSC, and author of Resources of the Southern Fields and Forests. During the Civil War, the northern blockade of Southern ports resulted in shortages of manufactured drugs from Europe. In response, Confederate States of America Surgeon General Samuel Preston Moore commissioned Porcher to compile a book of Southern plants with therapeutic qualities that could be used as substitutes. More than 40 (of the many hundred) plants listed in Porcher’s book are planted in the garden to provide opportunities for educational and research programming for MUSC students, faculty, and staff, as well as the local community. The garden will also feature an educational exhibit coordinated by the Waring Historical Library located inside the Drug Discovery Building where visitors can identify the plants and learn about their past and present medicinal uses. There will be an online exhibit that will present more extensive information on the garden and its plants. Contact Dr. Susan Johnson to get involved.

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