Once abundant river cane is a dwindling resource

out rivercaneEthnobotanist David Cozzo will lead an eco tour on July 30 to the Tessentee Bottomland Preserve to discuss how the Cherokee select river cane, an important artisan resource, and restoration efforts for this once abundant bamboo-like plant.


Area river cane is vanishing and its disappearance is affecting traditional Cherokee artisans, who use the plant for baskets and other handmade crafts, as part of their cultural traditions that date back hundreds of years.

River cane once was one of the most abundant plants in the Southeast, growing along the bank of many rivers and streams in Western North Carolina. But it has become scarcer. 

The outing is hosted in conjunction with Highlands-Cashiers Land Trust and Land Trust for the Little Tennessee. 

Cozzo has been working through The Revitalization of Traditional Cherokee Artisan Resources along with the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians to restore the traditional balance between maintaining and using natural resources like river cane. Cozzo will be the featured speaker at the Village Nature Series at 7 p.m. July 30, at the Village Green Commons at the Village Green in Cashiers. 

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