Medicinal Herb Garden

Medicinal Herb Garden

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Do you know the Medicinal Herb Garden at the University of Washington?

Although it was built in 1911, it is still little known on the University of Washington campus. The main entrance is on the north side of West Stevens Street between Benson Hall and the Chemistry Building.

When the pharmacy was founded by the School of Pharmacy, the herb garden reached 8 acres. Today it occupies about 2.5 acres, is divided into seven parts, and more than 800 plants are carefully marked with scientific and common names.

Keith Possey, who has been looking after the gardens for more than 20 years, explained that such an exceptional collection of herbs is the result of seed exchange programs with more than 300 botanical gardens around the world. Specimens include plants, such as Madagascar periwinkle (Catharanthus roseus), which produces the compound used to treat cancer, and Artemisia annua, commonly referred to as sweet honey for treating malaria.

When you visit, you will see Possey weeding, collecting seeds, snapping photos for the garden blog, and guiding special exhibit from the cute but annoying Eastern cottontail rabbit.

It’s hard to find, but if you look at the pruning shears on the belt and the wide-brimmed hat, you will see Possey.