American Indian Culture Area
3 Sisters Garden
Pow Wow Bench
American Indian Medicine Wheel
The Medicine Wheel Herb Garden is the first phase of a larger project at the Southern Virginia Botanical Garden to celebrate the heritage of Native Americans. Medicine Wheels have become a major symbol of peaceful interaction among all living beings on Mother Earth... representing harmonious connections. It is symbolized by a cross within a circle and is a ceremonial tool used for teaching and spiritual healing. Traditional Native American cultures view life as a continuous cycle, life mirrors the cycling of the seasons, the daily rising of the sun, and the phases of the moon.
There are pirtual meanings of the four cardinal directions along with their representative spirit animals and sacred plants. The ceremonial use of tobacco, sage, sweetgrass, and cedar is also included.
A future outer circle of a dry-stacked rock, raised garden, will hold many herbs that have been used by various tribes for medicinal purposes as well as for food preparation.
While the Medicine Wheel is from the culture of the northern plains tribes, other American native exhibits will represent cultures of other tribes from throughout the nation.