US (MI): Eastern Michigan University Greenhouse brings plant knowledge to the community

At the southwest corner of Eastern Michigan University's campus is an oasis for student and staff research, curiosity, and relaxation. It's the EMU greenhouse, housed in the Terrestrial and Aquatic Ecology Research Facility.

"The greenhouse brings a lot of life to the biology department and to campus," said Kinsey Ruffner, a greenhouse patron studying secondary education integrated science. "I really like that the greenhouse is available to all students, and you don't need to be a specific major or person to enter."

Built in 1997, the greenhouse has three major rooms, each serving a different purpose. In the first room, plants are grown for sales, classes, research, and more. It is called the Research Room. The second called the Propagation Room, houses the actual sales area, with various types of plants available at prices ranging from $1-$20. This room also houses the majority of non-sale plants that are part of the greenhouse coordinator collection.

The third room in the greenhouse is the Conservatory, where the majority of the plants are housed in the greenhouse collection and where students can come in to relax at a study table in the back. Brad Cross is the greenhouse coordinator. An Eastern alumnus, Cross has worked in the greenhouse since 2016. Cross majored in biology and has a passion for plants. He said he found the greenhouse while working on his undergraduate degree and fell in love with the space. He said he couldn't wait to work there.


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