Completed in 2009, the Ernesta Ballard Healing Garden honors a pioneering woman in horticulture, alumnus Ernesta Ballard. It features a central labyrinth and rain garden and was developed from Temple's award-winning 2006 Pennsylvania Horticultural Society Philadelphia Flower Show exhibit, “Nature Nurtures—Mind, Body, Spirit.”
The garden provides opportunities for students, faculty, researcher sand the public to see comprehensive stormwater management techniques that aim at capturing and infiltrating stormwater run-off in an aesthetically pleasing design using stone and native plants. A variety of plants help rid the run-off of any contaminants.
Ernesta Ballard was a founding member of the Ambler Campus Board of Visitors. She was President of the Pennsylvania Horticultural Society from 1963 to 1981, during which the Society instituted its nationally recognized community gardening program, Philadelphia Green, and revived the Philadelphia Flower Show.
Ballard knew that gardens could, and should, be places where individuals suffering from illness or simply the stresses of everyday life could find an oasis of calm and rejuvenation. The garden that bears her name is a fitting tribute to Ballard’s dedication to horticulture, her alma mater, and her personal interest in creating places of tranquility.