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Southern Environmental Center

Princeton Baptist Medical Center EcoScape:
The Healing Garden

10th Street SW and Tuscaloosa Avenue
(across the street from Princeton Towers)

The Healing Garden, located on the Princeton Baptist Medical Center campus, combines specially designed visual arts exhibits with fragrance and wildflower gardens to serve as a therapeutic tool for hospital staff, residents of Princeton Towers, and their families, as well function as a community park. It serves as an outdoor classroom for local high schools and colleges.

The garden is the first of its kind in Alabama and features herbs, fruit trees, and flowers traditionally grown in the 1940s and 1950s. The front fence was made by local artist Heather Spencer and is designed to resemble the famous Gee's Bend quilt patterns. The center of the garden features a water sculpture created by BSC Art Professor Jim Neel.

quilt patterened fence
The recycled wrought iron fence was designed to resemble the famous
Gee's Bend quilt patterns. Design and installation by Arnie Rutkis. (stoneshovel.com)

Ribbon cutting
The garden was officially dedicated on July 18, 2005. The ribbon was cut by (from left to right) Senator Rodger Smitherman, Beeson Foundation's Ann Warren, Councilwoman Carole Smitherman, Princeton BMC's President Charlie Faulkner, BSC's President David Pollick, Arlington-West End Neighborhood Association's Keith Aaron, Director of Princeton Towers Brenda Johnson, and Director of Senior Housing Dan McClusky.

Jim Neel's giant water wheel welcomes visitors to the garden. The various elements of the sculpture including sound, motion, and reflection mesmerize onlookers.