Guided Instagram Tour of the Global Urban Garden

June 12, 2017 by

Paris, Stockholm, Barcelona, Brooklyn, Winston-Salem, Los Angeles…In my visits across the country and abroad, I’ve experienced some compelling imagery and special moments that have captured my soul with their intriguing visual details.

The New Nordic Cuisine
The luscious beet, perched atop a water-filled glass, above, was the lone perfect centerpiece on the bar at Volt, one of Stockholm’s most beautiful Michelin star restaurants.

Farm to Fork
A single votive warmed our table at Rosendals Trädgård, above, Stockholm’s urban garden, nursery, farm shop and cafe on Djurgården island in the city center. Housed in a greenhouse, the cafe is open year round (except January) serving seasonal fare using organic and biodynamic ingredients harvested in their adjacent garden.

In my own backyard, the colorful storefront patio garden of Suitsupply on Abbot Kinney Boulevard in Venice, California.

At Kreation, a natural food and juice spot on Montana Avenue in Santa Monica, California, the colorful vertical garden blends various succulents with mosses around wooden block modules.

In my hood: I’m happy every day that I get to experience these palms soaring into the sky at dusk on the bluffs overlooking the blue Pacific in Santa Monica, California.

Winston-Salem’s Southern Belle
In Winston-Salem, North Carolina: My view of the garden through the porthole-like window at the Reynolda House of American Art, once the home of Katharine Smith Reynolds and Richard Joshua Reynolds, the founder of Reynolds Tobacco. Designed by landscape architect Thomas Sears, the estate has formal and informal gardens, a lake, recreational facilities, and a school. Katherine built a village to house workers employed on the property’s model farm that once demonstrated the latest farming and dairying practices of the period.

In Paris, a bright blossom leans over an antique French garden bistro table.

Salem’s Seed to Soil to Supper
In the kitchen of the Miksch House and Garden at Winston-Salem, North Carolina’s Old Salem Museums & Gardens, costumed interpreters led an interactive living history demonstration of “seed to soil to supper,” 18th century gardening practices which included planting, harvesting, cooking and preserving food from the garden. As nothing was wasted then, scraps became part of another meal or compost for the garden. Today it would be called sustainable living with an organic garden.

A potted “vertical garden” wall spotted during a post-lunch walk in Bescanó, Spain.

From the Dwell on Design LA home tour: I loved the geometry and contrast of this home’s entrance: soft grasses spilling over hard concrete and a patterned tile wall.

DIY Planters From Recycled Plastic Bottles
During the weeklong Girona, Spain annual Temps de Flors garden festival, residents and merchants find spots throughout the city for their planted installations, like the one above created from recycled plastic water bottles and cups tied to a drain pipe.

When I walked my son’s dog in Brooklyn, it was a pleasure tossing garbage in this green roof trash container.

Exterior weathered Corten steel truss against the backdrop of the green roof on Alex Puig’s Vivers Ter design offices in Bescanó, near Girona, Spain.

Planted chair at Girona, Spain’s Temps de Flors festival.

Loved the contrasting lines and textures of concrete, stones, and grasses in this raised garden bed and retaining wall in Venice, California.

Hoisting a One-Ton Tree on Cathedral Steps
For the opening of our Lymbus installation at the Temps de Flors festival in Girona, I was one of 30 participating in a musical theater performance on the steps of Cathedral Sant Feliu. Before a crowd of 2500, we collectively hoisted up a one-ton tree using a rope tackle technique. Landscape artist Marc Grañèn and Barcelona’s Comediants, a team of actors, musicians and artists, co-produced the musical and theatrical event that culminated with fireworks over the cathedral.

For Lymbus, each day at 5pm DJs planted among the flora played music for the crowd in Girona’s Plaça de Sant Feliu.

Love the circular shape of this bowl brimming with succulents atop wood decking that kisses the edge of a blue pool on one side and a Koi pond on the other.

In Paris’s 3rd Arrondissement, bountiful vines flowing from window boxes drape the facade of this residential building.

My neighbor’s hyper-colorful back garden filled with found objects he’s upcycled into garden decor.

On the Hawaiian island of Molokai, I got to see this species of small yellow spiny Dragon Fruit or Hylocereus, a genus of night-blooming cactus that blooms at night and only once.

The entrance to a neighbor’s garden. The owner of the house covered the entire exterior with mosaics.

One of many hanging vertical garden products I spotted at Maison & Objet in Paris.

Eco-conscious statements in this assemblage in front of a shop on Main Street in Santa Monica.

In Stockholm, I was smitten by this simple bunch of flowing tulips on a coffee table tray.

Spotted at Maison & Objet in Paris: Dutch company Rescued turns waste from leftover potato skins into 3D printed hanging planters.

Temps de Flors interactive installation invited visitors to draw and leave messages on a blackboard-painted door.

Plain and simple: I love geometry.

Temps de Flors…color, color, color and little paper bag flower pots.

Little paper bag flower pots fill the log while others hang to form an easy vertical garden.

Dumpster Diving Plants
Outside the City Museum in St. Louis: The delicious irony of a big dumpster upcycled into a plant-filled container rather than one filled with trash for the landfill.

I invite you to follow my path on Instagram @urbangardens.

All photos: Robin Plaskoff Horton for Urban Gardens.





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  3. j.ann said:

    What a beautiful tour!

    — November 14, 2018 @ 04:06

  4. camella manors said:

    Nice decoration! I can’t wait to try these out in our condominium at camella manors. thank you for sharing this!

    — March 9, 2022 @ 00:41

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