The Dorothy Crandall Bliss Botanic Garden contains more than 200 species of plants native to the southeastern United States. The garden includes several endangered and rare plants as well as species of special botanical interest, such as the Ben Franklin Tree which is no longer found in the wild.
The Botanic Garden provides an outdoor laboratory of indigenous plant species for the education and enjoyment of students and visitors. Students have access to rare and endangered species of plants, as well as the insects and birds the plants attract. The garden serves an important conservation function by providing a home for endangered plants and a habitat for wildlife.
A long-held dream of Professor of Biology emeriti Dorothy Bliss was the creation of a place of research and beauty for students, faculty, staff, and guests. The Botanic Garden was established in 1994 through Dr. Bliss’s efforts. Volunteer help and plant contributions were made through the generous assistance of the Native Plant Society and the Blue Ridge Wildflower Society. The garden is used regularly for courses in botany, ecology, environmental studies, and art.
The Botanic Garden now has its own website, which will eventually include an inventory of plants. Click here to visit the site.