From a career in finance to full-time gardener, Senior Grounds Keeper Sheree Wright is one of the people behind Furman University’s beautiful award-winning campus.
Wright, who has devoted herself to Furman’s grounds for the past decade, has found her calling. “I’ve always loved plants,” she says. “As a child I was always playing in the dirt.”
Now she plays in the dirt for a living, focusing on Furman’s Asia Garden and the Place of Peace. Certified by the American Rose Society as a master consulting rosarian, Wright also helps tend the university’s celebrated Rose Garden.
Caring for plants may keep her on the cutting edge of horticulture, but Wright’s domain encompasses a variety of critters as well — Furman’s black and white swans included. Besides keeping track of the swans, feeding them and taking them to the vet, Wright occasionally has to rescue a swan who has become tangled in discarded fishing line.
Depending on the season, a typical day for Wright might include cutting flowers for campus events, fishing leaves out of the koi pond and designing new flower beds. Weeding, pruning and giving tours of the Asia Garden are all part of her job description. “I’m also the unofficial Furman snake catcher,” quips the South Carolina master gardener.
The many facets of her job keep Sheree Wright on her toes. “There’s never a dull moment,” she happily admits.