Photography by
Greg Benson

Penn’s Botanical Garden, better known as the BioPond, has been one of the special places on Penn’s campus almost since there was a campus in West Philadelphia. Begun in 1897 as a research tool for the Department of Botany, the two-acre site tucked behind Goddard and Leidy Labs just off Hamilton Walk has long been a favorite spot for University students, faculty and staff, and others seeking a respite from the city that
increasingly grew up around it.

   Like migrating birds whose former wetland has become a parking lot, they’ve had to look elsewhere to find that refuge for much of the past year—but no more. The BioPond is back, following an extensive renovation project. On June 1, it was rededicated as the James G. Kaskey Memorial Garden, in recognition of the donors who made the work possible,
Jeanne Gittleman Kaskey and Richard A. Kaskey W’43.

   Besides draining and restoring the pond itself, the project included installing a new path, adding a waterfall and stone bridge, and placing spots for sitting along the water’s edge. In all, the work has returned the pond and surrounding garden to their former glory, and then some—as shown in the photographs on the next page, taken this spring.



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Copyright 2001 The Pennsylvania Gazette Last modified 5/2/01