Now Hiring: Teaching Naturalist (Part Time, Seasonal), Visitor Services (Part Time)

The Teaching Naturalist will support the environmental educational initiatives of Ruffner Mountain: provide education programs to inspire people of all ages with a sense of stewardship for the natural world, and an understanding of how our actions now affect the world that future generations will inherit.

The Visitor Services position will support Ruffner Mountain’s initiatives and mission by assisting in the running of the Nature Center and associated facilities during the weekends.

To learn more and apply, please visit

May 4 and 5 Weekend Hours Update


Life happens to all of us - even to Ruffner staff. Less than a dozen hard-working and passionate employees labor seven days a week to maintain Ruffner Mountain, while also continuing our conservation and education efforts. Unfortunately, this week has been a hard one - our coalition has been beset by illness, overwork, and death in their families.

Because Ruffner is only as strong as its staff, we will have modified hours this weekend in order to let them breathe, grieve, and take care of what needs to be taken care of - namely, themselves.

Ruffner's Nature Center and Offices will be close at 2pm Saturday, the 4th, and remain closed until normal operating hours on Tuesday, the 6th.

That means staff will not be around to answer your questions Saturday afternoon and Sunday. Printed preserve maps will not be available, and the animal exhibits will not be accessible to the public. However, the pavilion bathrooms will be open and preserve maps are available on our website. The trails are open from dawn to dusk and, as always, hike at your own risk.

Thank you for understanding - and if you see a staff member in the near future, thank them for their hard work towards the place we all love.

P.S. No worries about our captive wildlife collection - no matter what the situation, they will always be taken care of with the utmost care

From all of us at Ruffner Mountain THANK YOU for such an amazing Native Plant Sale. It was truly humbling to see so many folks show up to support biodiversity. Thank you for bringing habitat gardening to your own home - that is what makes these plant sales successful. If we, along with Turkey Creek Nature Preserve can convince you that growing natives is vital to sustaining wildlife habitats, combating climate change, and conserving water - then we have done our job.

This year’s plant sale saw approximately 3,245 native plants entering yards and gardens in Birmingham and beyond. Some of our most popular natives this year were Woodland Phlox 'Blue Moon', Purple Coneflower, Heartleaf Foamflower, and Red (Scarlet) Buckeye. 

We’d like to give special thanks to all the wonderful volunteers who helped on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday including: Michelle Reynolds, Bob Farley, Mandy Nobles, Karen Hutchinson, Debbie Dumais, Ruffner Mountain Board of Directors, Friends of Turkey Creek, Officer Glenn Pleasant, Linda Gail Sherk, and the Blanche Dean Chapter of the Alabama Wildflower Society. We would also like to express our gratitude to several vendors who made our lives a lot easier while preparing for the weekend: Mom's Basement, Hop City, Hero Doughnuts, Scott Turner (United-Johnson Brothers of Alabama), El Barrio, Alabama Waldorf School, Revelator, and Diplomat Deli.

All photos by Bob Farley 

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Plant Species List for 2019 Native Plant Sale (Updated March 25)

You’ve asked for it… and here it is!

The 2019 Native Plant Sale, held in conjunction with Turkey Creek Nature Preserve, will be the first weekend of April. The Member Pre-Sale is April 5th from 4:00pm-7:00pm, and the Public Sale is April 6, 9am-2pm, and April 7, 1pm-4pm. Remember, members get first pick this year! (List will be updated throughout the week - availability of plants are not guaranteed)