This week I had an opportunity to take a trip up to the Upper West Side for an event at the American Museum of Natural History. Since I was early, I decided to stroll the surrounding blocks, scouting for those little window-boxed urban gardens I love so much. To my great surprise, I came upon one of those blocks you see every now and then that is filled, from end to end, with plantings. Blocks like this make it so clear that neighbors inspire each other.
It started with the potted flowers at 129 W. 80th, delightfully bright and summery, despite the shorter days and cooler nights. The wooden window boxes are neatly planted with variegated ivy and mums in autumn hues. There's even a large planted pot on the steps leading to the basement level entrance, filled with lush gold-tipped coleus and mini petunias.
It helps that the building has a fresh coat of white paint. And it doesn't hurt that the rest of this block between Columbus and Amsterdam is also keeping up with the pace. Next door are impatiens bursting with their last bit of summer life, and across the street, a somewhat more modest looking house resonates with its neighbor at #129 with dramatically planted Rapunzel-like ivy and pert coleus. skgr