Posts Tagged ‘Annuals’

We did a gorgeous pumpkin installation this past week on a rooftop garden in Chelsea, Manhattan. The fall decorations were hand selected and delivered from Brooklawn Farm Market in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. To keep the display unique, we used a subtle color palette with lots of whites, creams, yellows, greens and soft oranges as opposed to the common carving pumpkins.

Arranging the Pumpkins On the Terrace

This is a great way to add a punch, and I mean PUNCH of color and texture to gardens at this time of year. The empty spaces left by seasonal annuals and tender perennials can quickly be filled with pumpkins and gourds. Fairytale pumpkins anchor this display, and my new favorite is the Yugoslavian finger pumpkin which is the white one with little finger-like shapes all around the bottom side of it. It is so sculptural, and is looks like a modern piece of art. We used the small white jack-b-little pumpkins to create a “decorative mulch” in the planter boxes. Enjoy the pictures.

Clusters of Pumpkins Make a Big Impact

Muhlenbergia capillaris Grass Adds Texture and Movement to the Display

Jack-B-Little Pumpkins Serve as a “Decorative Mulch” in this Planter

Colors and Textures used in the Display

Overhead of View of Display Terrace


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I often say that gardening is the best kind of therapy. It is cheap, and plants always listen. There is no prognosis, diagnosis, or prescription at the end of a day of gardening, and the mixture of aesthetic bliss mixed in with the honest sweat on your brow goes beyond the feeling of satisfaction.  

I  find that I take the most joy out of gardening by noticing the small details. When I worked on my gardens in Pennsylvania, my cat was my garden companion, and I was in such a relaxed state when I was pulling the thistles out of my perennial borders with my delightfully obese orange tabby by my side. In New York, my garden is now in the shape of a 50 square foot terrace, limited to several containers with room for a small grill and cafe seating for two.

While cleaning up the annuals for fall, I pulled out the Ipomoea batatas (Sweet Potato Vine) to find little sweet potato tubers growing in my containers. Of course I have had this happen in planting beds in the country, but I didn’t expect to find so many growing in my limited container space. I have never heard of anyone eating the tubers of the ornamental sweet potato vines, and don’t recommend it as these plants have been cultivated for their showy qualities as opposed to their agrarian counterparts. Regardless, it is fun to find these little surprises in the garden. Perhaps this spring I will try some actual veggies on the terrace in addition to my herbs.


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