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Plant of the Week 2011

Toad Lily

Toad Lily (Tricyrtis 'Empress') Bleecker Street DOT strip at 100 Bleecker Street


NYU Garden Shop Plant of the Week
Toad Lily (Tricyrtis 'Empress') Bleecker Street DOT strip at 100 Bleecker Street.
Friday October 7, 2011

The toad lilies you can see in flower right now on Bleecker Street just west of Coles Sports Center were planted by the Garden Shop student crew in the spring of 2010. As you can see, they really thrive beneath the ash trees here, and they're one of the best fall-blooming perennials for the shady garden. These particular plants were grown for NYU from divisions made at Battery Park, home to the largest public perennial gardens in the U.S. It was great (and green!) to pick up our plants just down the street in lower Manhattan rather than having them shipped in from far away!

The NYU Garden Shop serves the University community and the historic neighborhood of Greenwich Village by designing, installing, and maintaining gardens and containers that welcome people to the Washington Square campus. It aims to foster a sense of unity on our disparate urban campus by creating garden areas and container plantings that will signal to the visitor that NYU is both a part of the city and distinct from the city. It also strives for combining Restoration Ecology with garden design. 

One major example of Restoration Ecology on the NYU campus, is the gift of the Class of 2009, a native woodland garden, populated by plant species native to Manhattan before the arrival of European settlers.  The designer of the Woodland Garden [pictured right], Darrel G. Morrison, FASLA, made a career of proving that ecological restoration and high aesthetic standards are not mutually exclusive.

"Native plants help evoke a sense of place without the need for expensive and environmentally damaging alternations to the soul," says NYU Sustainable Gardener George Reis. "Using natives requires an understanding of how to create communities of plants similar to those that occur naturally."

Plants are highly susceptible to abiotic stressors, or hazards to plant health that don't involve insect, pests, or pathogens. Abiotic stressors are the reason trees that live in cities have much shorter lifespans than those that live in forests. As a result, gardening in New York City has become more popular in recent years. While it was historically a hobby reserved for the wealthy, gardening is currently the top pastime of United States citizens.

To build your own sustainable garden, click here.


Previous Plants of the Week:


Swamp White Oak
September 8, 2011
Eastern Hemlock (Tsuga canadensis) in front of the NYU Bobst Library, 70 Washington Square South.

Eastern Hemlock
August 23, 2011
Eastern Hemlock (Tsuga canadensis) in front of the NYU Bobst Library, 70 Washington Square South.

Coral Bells 'Caramel'
August 16, 2011
Coral Bells 'Caramel' (Heuchera villosa) alongside Bleecker street sidewalk of #3 Washington Square Village.

Purslane
August 9, 2011
Purslane (Portulaca oleracea) can be found in various garden areas and containers around NYU.

Feather Reedgrass
August 2, 2011
Feather Reedgrass (Calamagrostis x acutiflora 'Karl Foerster') in the triangle at the corner of Mercer Street and Bleecker Street.

Panicle Hydrangea
July 26, 2011
Panicle Hydrangea 'Limelight' (Hydrangea paniculata 'Limelight') on the Bleecker Street side of Coles Sports Center, 181 Mercer Street.

Cutleaf Coneflower
July 19, 2011
Cutleaf Coneflower (Rudbeckia lacinata) north of the entrance to the Coles Sports Center, 181 Mercer Street.

Rose Mallow
July 12, 2011
Rose Mallow (Hibiscus moscheutos) on the Bleecker Street side of Coles Sports Center, 181 Mercer Street.

Dense Blazing Star
July 5, 2011
Dense Blazing Star (Liatris spicata) in Mercer Plaza, 251 Mercer Street.

Wild Bergamot
June 28, 2011
Wild Bergamot (Monarda spp.) on the west side of Coles Sports Center, 181 Mercer Street.

Hearts of Gold Redbud
June 21, 2011
Hearts of Gold Redbud (Cercis canadensis 'Hearts of Gold') in the west section of the Bleecker Street sidewalk at #3 Washington Square Village.

Russian Sage
June 15, 2011
Russian Sage (Perovskia atriplicifolia) in the middle section of the Bleecker Street sidewalk between #3 and #4 Washington Square Village.

Oakleaf Hydrangea
June 8, 2011
Oakleaf Hydrangea (Hydrangea quercifolia) in the lobby garden at #3 Washington Square Village.

Wild Indigo
May 31, 2011
Wild Indigo (Baptisia Australis) in Mercer Plaza, 251 Mercer Street.

Arkansas Blue Star
May 24, 2011
Arkansas Blue Star (Amsonia hubrichtii) on the west side of Coles Sports Center, 181 Mercer St.

Sunny Knock Out Rose
May 17, 2011
Sunny Knock Out Rose (Rosa 'Radsunny') at 251 Mercer St.

Red Ruby Swiss Chard
May 10, 2011
Red Ruby Swiss Chard (Beta vulgaris 'Ruby Chard') sidewalk planters on Greene Street between W 4th Street and Washington Place.

Wild Columbine
May 3, 2011
Wild Columbine (Aquilegia canadensis) at Founders Hall, 120 East 12th St.

Japanese Flowering Cherry
April 25, 2011
Japanese Flowering Cherry (Prunus serrulata), or 'Kwanzan,' on the Bleecker Street side of Cole Sports Center, 181 Mercer Street.

Saucer Magnolia
April 19, 2011
Saucer Magnolia (Magnolia x soulangiana)

Daffodil
April 12, 2011
Daffodil (Narcissus spp.) in the sidewalk median at 100 Bleecker Street.

Lenten Rose
April 5, 2011
Lenten Rose (Helleborus x hybridus) in the sidewalk median at 100 Bleecker Street.

Camellia
March 29, 2011
Camellia 'April Remembered' (Camellia japonica 'April Remembered') at Coles Sports Center, 181 Mercer Street.

Japanese Maple
Mar 22, 2011
Coral Bark Japanese Maple (Acer palmatum 'Sango Kaku') at Glucksman Ireland House

Hamamelis
Mar 18, 2011
NYU Garden Shop Plant of the Week---Witch-hazel (Hamamelis x intermedia) at #2 Washington Square Village Lobby Garden. (interior of Washington Square Village, W 3rd Street just west of Mercer)

Crocus Species
Mar 8, 2011
Crocus species mix on Bleecker Street side of NYU Coles Sports Center

George Reis

George Reis, Supervisor of Sustainable Landscaping and the NYU Garden Shop


George Reis is the Supervisor of Sustainable Landscaping and the NYU Garden Shop. George came to NYU as a gardener in 1995 and studied Portuguese and Brazilian literature in NYU's College of Arts and Science. His translation of a Portuguese poem appeared in Mantis, a literary journal at Stanford University. He has begun translating selected writings of Roberto Burle Marx, the great Brazilian landscape architect. George Reis holds a B.A. in Portuguese from NYU and is currently working on a Master of Science in Landscape Design at Columbia University.  George and his wife Ethel live in leafy Bay Ridge, Brooklyn.


Flowers of the Week


George Reis and Darrel Morrison talk about NYU's Woodland Garden

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Woodland Garden

Woodland Garden plants, gift of the Class of 2009 in conjunction with NYU Garden Shop

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