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San Diego Botanic Garden to use Indigenous traditions to further understand medicinal properties of native plants

Torrey Pine
San Diego Botanic Garden
This undated photo pictures a torrey pine tree that is one of the surviving trees at Torrey Pines Reserve.

A new initiative at the San Diego Botanic Garden aims to study the medicinal aspects of regional plant life, and it’s doing so through the lens of Indigenous traditions.

The grant-funded program will help researchers develop a new portion of the garden dedicated to analyzing the health benefits of local flora.

Researchers hope that referencing traditional medical knowledge known to San Diego's Indigenous populations, the effort will provide insights overlooked by Western medicine.


Lauren J. Mapp, a reporter at the The San Diego Union-Tribune who covers the region’s indigenous communities, joined Midday Edition on Monday with more on the new program.