The move to online and hybrid learning has led the Maryland University of Integrative Health to sell Dr. Jim Duke’s Green Farmacy Garden to the Community Ecology Institute, a nonprofit organization located in Columbia. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.
Dr. James Duke, a published ethnobotanist and former faculty member at MUIH, of Laurel, built The Green Farmacy Garden in 1998 after a 30-year career with the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The six-acre property, located at 8210 Murphy Road, in Fulton, includes a house and pasture land and became a sanctuary for more than 300 medicinal plants collected during a 60-year span. The garden was designed to highlight the plants featured in Duke’s book, The Green Pharmacy.
The property, which was Duke’s home until his passing in 2017, was eventually transferred to MUIH as part of an arrangement between the Duke family and the university. The gardens were then made available to the public, as well as MUIH students in the school’s herbal degree programs.
However, with the move to online and hybrid learning, students’ visits to the property were reduced and administrators committed to finding an appropriate organization to take over the gardens.
“As stewards of the garden, we are pleased that it will continue to serve as a place of learning for the community and herbalists,” said MUIH’s President & CEO Marc Levin Levin. CEI leaders plan to continue to make the gardens available for community events and expand public use of the property.