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Distributed for Hirmer Publishers

New York City Gardens

New York may be most easily recognized by its trademark skyscrapers and brick tenement buildings, but the truth is that the city is actually teeming with luxurious roof gardens and private courtyard oases. Creative gardeners and architects have risen to meet the unique challenges of the urban landscape, designing spaces that celebrate the city while providing a restful escape.

New York City Gardens presents New York’s evolving tradition of garden culture through images and discussions of thirty of its most outstanding gardens, from world-famous botanical gardens to richly re-cultivated public urban spaces, luxurious penthouse terraces, and innovative art gardens without soil or plants. Many of the gardens are set against vistas of the quintessential New York—Central Park, the Empire State Building, skyscrapers of Midtown, and the sensational skyline of Lower Manhattan. Other gardens reveal surprising and exotic intimate retreats from the bustle of the city. While most were designed by noted landscape architects, including Dan Kiley, Hideo Sasaki, Ken Smith, and Halsted Wells, many others were created over decades by talented homeowners themselves.

As more and more city dwellers in New York and beyond look to cultivate their own kitchen and container gardens and individual outdoor sanctuaries, this book provides hundreds of inspiring images as well as historical background and insight into the practical and imaginative solutions of city garden designers.

240 pages | 190 color plates | 10 x 11 3/4 | © 2010

Art: Photography


Geography: Urban Geography

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"In New York City Gardens,Veronika Hofer and Betsy Pinover Schiff offer up a visually inviting respite from the city of steel, glass, concrete and asphalt. They celebrate the city’s luxuriant public and private spaces — including one real estate company’s office terrace, which required 98 tons of planters, dirt, trees and material delivered over six months. . . . New York City Gardens is an ambrosial paean to public and private spaces."

Sam Roberts | New York Times

“Eclectic mix of traditional backyards with chic roof gardens and public parks.”

Gardens Illustrated

“This book had me at hello, with the opening garden on a rooftop terrace overlooking Central Park. Other little wonders featured have views overlooking the Brooklyn Bridge, or the Manhattan skyline, or are so extraordinary that you could never guess from the pictures that they were even in a city. . . . Very cool and unexpectedly marvelous.”

English Garden

Table of Contents


Symphony in Green
   Central Park South / Manhattan

Garden Picture with Frame
   West Village / Manhattan

Barefoot Bliss at the End of Town
   Wave Hill / Bronx

Scent of Roses at Vertiginous Heights
   Fifth Avenue / Manhattan

A Wonderful Transformation
   Brooklyn Heights

The Art Garden
   Museum of Modern Art / Manhattan

Exotic Erratics
   Fort Greene / Brooklyn

Harbor Garden with a History
   Brooklyn Heights

The Glory of the Shady Garden
   Central Park South / Manhattan

Far Eastern Flair in the City Hubbub
   Brooklyn Botanic Garden / Brooklyn

Romance with Neighborly Blessing
   Chelsea / Manhattan

Ensemble of Balcony Seats

Village Idyll between Skyscraper Canyons
   Upper West Side / Manhattan

Bauhaus on the Roof
   Upper East Side / Manhattan

Scholars’ Paradise
   Rockefeller University Campus / Manhattan

Island of Flowers in a Sea of Buildings
   Chelsea / West Side Manhattan

Jewel in Central Park
   Conservatory Garden / Manhattan

Where Realtors Take a Break
   Madison Avenue / Manhattan

Nostalgia in Pastel
   Upper East Side / Manhattan

Splendor for All
   New York Botanical Gardens / Bronx

Variations on More Than One Level

A Cozy Place by the Waterfall
   Greenacre Park / Manhattan

Hospitable Elegance
   Park Avenue / Manhattan

Mirror of the Soul
   Upper West Side / Manhattan

The Ha-ha
   Metropolitan Museum of Art / Manhattan

Flower Frenzy Above the River
   Heather Garden / Manhattan

Garden Loft with Skyline Backdrop
   Long Island City

A Walk with Miss Liberty
   Battery Park / South Manhattan

Many-splendored Miniature
   Long Island City / Queens

Gardens for the View
   Rockefeller Rooftops / Manhattan

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