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Posts Tagged ‘gardening’

Looking up at window boxes on a building's catw

Georgia over at local ecologist is featuring window box gardens from different urban plant bloggers around the world, from Tokyo to London. I’m honored to be today’s guest blogger, musing on my window box garden dreams. Read more in my guest blog post at local ecologist.

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A squash plant thriving in a public wooden structure intended to support a young tree. Mainzer Straße was recently dug up to repair water pipes below; this very young tree appears to have been planted after the street was restored. So it, and the structure supporting it, are rather new arrivals on the block.

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Ball of spiky pale green foliage hanging from strings

Two surprises awaited me this past Saturday as I took a walk from Neukölln to Kreuzberg, getting acclimated in Berlin again after a week in the heat of Spain. First, I realized that one of my favorite greenmarkets, the “Turkish market” (held on Tuesdays and Fridays on Maybachufer), has spun off a third, Saturday market dedicated to fabrics and handcrafts. There, I was doubly surprised to find an airy, minimal stand in shades of dusty green and creamy white, offering an array of strange air plants with nary a root or speck of soil in sight.

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In a grungy steel planter in front of a cute little mite of a delicatessen in Kreuzberg,

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I was already planning to celebrate the recent appearance of this year’s first snowdrops with a post of some sort. Then I found out that my friend Eric Larson, manager of Yale’s Marsh Botanical Garden, introduces this little white early bird of a flower in the latest video he’s hosted for an internet project called GardenClips.

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Much of the city is still leafless, but I caught this vine growing rapidly down a concrete wall separating the train station from the swimming center. Maybe there will be post-swim berries this summer?

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The first crocus I’ve seen this year. There were snowdrops too. Spring is near. Can’t wait.

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Rack holding "no parking" sign and a pot of flowers
Only plants may park on this driveway, on a small street of souvenir shops and lunch spots on Kyoto’s famous Philosopher’s Walk, leading to Ginkakuji, the silver temple. The Philosopher’s Walk is full of cherry blossoms in the spring, they say; in winter, there are other plants to be seen.

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Many white pots of pansies attached to fence

For lack of yards, many Kyoto houses and apartment buildings feature jury-rigged container gardens instead. These usually consist of rows of motley pots and crates lined up along the building walls, adjoining the sidewalk. This container garden had a different feel.

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My host in Kyoto has a yuzu tree in her garden. I have tree envy.
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