A new state initiative will bring an urban farm to a vacant lot in West Baltimore, but instead of growing fruits and vegetables to eat, the focus will be on plants that can be turned into natural dyes for artists, Gov. Larry Hogan’s office announced Wednesday.
The inspiration comes from the governor’s trade mission to Asia in 2015, and a 2017 visit by first lady Yumi Hogan to her native South Korea, where she toured the Natural Dyeing Cultural Center in Naju. A delegation from the center came to the area earlier this year to demonstrate natural dyeing for potential partners in the farm.
Indigo, marigolds and the state flower, the Black-eyed Susan, are among the crops that will be grown on the plot of land at 731 Ashburton St., which is currently owned by Coppin State University.
“Our trade mission to Asia yielded many positive results, and we are proud to work with our partners in Korea to bring this innovative initiative to Maryland,” Gov. Hogan said in a statement. “This urban garden will have a tremendous impact towards the community revitalization of West Baltimore and our economy – from the natural dyes produced by the crops to the unique apparel which will be manufactured for the marketplace.”
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