Grounds

Creating a Sustainable Landscape

Furman is regularly recognized as one of the most beautiful college campuses in the country. However, achieving this beauty in a sustainable and environmentally friendly fashion can be challenging. Furman strives to create a healthy, regenerative landscape that minimizes the use of toxic chemicals, protects wildlife habitat, and conserves resources.

Did You Know?

Furman’s campus is a certified Level I arboretum and since 2008 has been recognized as a Tree Campus by the Arbor Day Foundation for its dedication to effective community forestry management. 

The ethnobotany garden near the Townes Science Center grows a series of basic dye and fiber plants used in an Applied Plant science course.

Furman is home to multiple bee colonies at the farm and a series of wildflower / pollinator gardens that have replaced areas formerly covered in turf.

Sagittaria fasciculata, known as Bunched Arrowhead, is a federally protected small herbaceous plant that grows in forested seeps. Furman has one of the few wild Bunched Arrowhead populations in the world and maintains a public viewing deck for visitors to observe the plant.

In an effort to improve the water quality of Furman lake, the university has stopped mowing the riparian buffer on a regular basis to help reduce nutrient and sediment runoff into the lake and reduce the waterfowl population who don’t like to walk through tall grass.

What’s Next?

Moving forward we hope to continue to make our campus landscaping more sustainable through:

  • Experimenting with the use of Holganix, a plant probiotic containing over 800 soil microbes that promote soil health and lowers dependence on synthetic fertilizers and chemicals.  Its use is projected to lower the use of nitrogen by 50% and the use of pesticides by 75%.  
  • Using increasingly more lake water to meet our irrigation needs.
  • Implementing the subsequent phases of the lake restoration plan.
  • Expanding bee hives to support native plants.