Profiles of Spontaneous Urban Plants
The appeal of quality landscape design in urban environments is well evidenced by recent successes such as the High Line and Brooklyn Bridge Park. And an appreciation of the environmental and health benefits of green space has spawned initiatives like Million Trees NYC, the NYC Green Infrastructure Plan and numerous community gardens throughout the city. Meanwhile, with all of our talk about the green amidst the grey, there’s little talk of the tenacious little flora that pops up in cracked sidewalks, vacant lots and otherwise neglected spaces, that thrives in places no other plants will grow. Informal plants — weeds — get a bad rap, but they too, alongside their intentionally-planted counterparts, can help alleviate urban heat island effect, support stormwater management infrastructure and aid phytoremediation efforts.
Landscape designer, teacher and writer David Seiter has been researching the city’s underappreciated plant life and finding ways to highlight its value. Seiter is the founding principal of Future Green Studio, a firm that works “to reveal the nuances of our urban landscape in subtle, poetic ways that provide clues to the complex ecology of cities.” Here, he presents “Profiles of Spontaneous Urban Plants,” an effort to champion the ecological and aesthetic benefits of informal vegetation, and shares the Studio’s beautiful and charming series of illustrations, based on traditional botanical classification drawings, of the wild urban plants found surrounding their Gowanus office.
Read the full article at Urban Omnibus