The Greenhouse, the first building constructed for academic use on the Homewood campus, was built in two stages: The Botanical Laboratory at the eastern end and the adjoining section of greenhouse was built in 1908 for plant observation and experimentation.
The area it borders, now known as the Decker Gardens, then contained weeds used in research and decorative flowers. The Plant Physiology Laboratory and the greenhouses to its west were added in 1911-12. Both were used by the biology department and the McCollum-Pratt Institute for the Investigation of Micronutrient Elements until the early 1970s. It also housed offices of the Johns Hopkins Magazine. University administration offices moved in next, and plants for campus landscaping grew in the greenhouses.
Today, in addition to holding plants for research, the Greenhouse (center, behind trees) houses The Academy at Johns Hopkins (to the right of Greenhouse), which fosters the continued scholarship and research of retired Krieger School faculty. It is also home to graduate students in sociology and anthropology, spiders used in research, and a general classroom.