Judy Visits The High Line In NYC

Judy was in New York a couple of weeks ago for work, and being an excellent and supportive spouse she took the opportunity to visit the High Line and take lots of photographs. The High Line is a public park that uses abandoned elevated train tracks as a platform.

High Line
New York’s High Line park.

The design was done by the landscape achitecture firms of James Corner Field Operations and Diller Scorfidio and Renfro.

High Line
An elevated meadow in the city.

By the way, today is Judy’s birthday. Happy birthday, Judy! Sadly, we are not together as she is now in California for work. She does an ungodly amount of travel. However, we will be meeting out there next week and attending the Garden Blogger’s Fling together.

High Line

The High Line is a public space providing all kinds of opportunities for public use. There is space for just sitting, and maybe have lunch outside.

High Line

Lots of space for strolling, of course. Judy said the width of the park seemed to be about 10′ to 30′.

High Line

Couples can get to know each other better.

High Line

The High Line is similar to Chicago’s Lurie garden in that the views take in the strikingly urban and a kind of idealized natural beauty. The High Line is different, though, in that the city and the garden are on much more intimate terms. This girl on a balcony is just a few feet from the High Line.

High Line

When I first heard about the High Line I thought it would be a sort of massive green roof, but that is not really the case. Yes, there are low-growing drought tolerant plants, but there are also deep-rooted prairie plants, shrubs, and trees.

High Line
Looks like a Himalayan Birch, maybe? Notice it is growing up out of the train tracks.

Serviceberries ripening in the city air.

High Line

Yarrow and Salvia growing among the grasses.

High Line

White False Indigo and Prairie Dock that hasn’t sent up any stalks yet. Not sure what that orange flower is.

High Line

Knautia, Salvia, and grasses.

High Line

Purple Coneflowers.

High Line

Heuchera on one side, and Goatsbeard on the other.

High Line

What looks like a white cultivar of Pale Purple Coneflower.

High Line

Oh, I can’t forget the garden art.

High Line

Now, you would never find this statue in a Chicago park. Jeez, put some pants on.

High Line

Oh, and it wouldn’t be New York without a hot dog cart.

High Line

Would you like to see this kind of public garden in your town?

64 Comments on “Judy Visits The High Line In NYC

  1. All that added green makes city life bearable. What a great addition and a wonderful job. I’m sure the people who walk here appreciate it. I would like to thank you for your thoughtful comments on my blog. They make my difficult journey feel a little lighter 🙂

  2. That’s awesome! I’m a big fan. Not only of your wife for taking the photos, but of NYC for being so cool! Thanks for sharing!

  3. I’m so jealous…I’ve been itching to visit the High Line!. Yes, I would love to see something like this in Portland (or anything designed by Oudolf! I think the mystery orange flowers are Eremurus

  4. Oh yes, that’s a very nice idea for using some urban space. Public areas allow great clumps of colour and dramatic planting – love all that heuchera and goats beard, and the orange flower (is it Eremurus/Foxtail lily?)and the cone flowers too. Happy Birthday to Judy!

    • They’re trying to extend it further up the elevated rail tracks. I thought I read there was something similar in the Ruhr in Germany.

  5. When I think of all the weight that this supports-well, I’m glad that I don’t live under it. It is beautiful though, and the train tracks left in place add a lot to it, I think. Happy birthday to your photographer-she does a great job.

  6. I visited the High Line a few years ago. It is impressive! I love the juxtaposition of the industrial elements and softness of the prairie plantings. The sculptures are additions since I was there but I did have a celebrity sighting…Julian Lennon was doing a photo shoot for an album cover. Happy Birthday Judy and have fun a the Blogger’s Fling!

  7. The highline is a terrific way to see the city and stretch your legs after museums and shopping. I love the way the plants and paving change along the way…a real treat for anyone who loves gardening and/or nature.

    Happy birthday to Judy! Sorry to miss the fling, I’ll be at a volunteer meeting next week. Enjoy!

  8. The High Line is a treasure and well worth the visit. I’ve been twice — like any great garden you need to see it in many different seasons and weather. A fascinating place to be in — it’s such a contrast to be in a wooded, grassy, serene place, shaded by oak trees and birches, high above the traffic!

    The orange spikes are Eremus, foxtail lily.

  9. Happy Birthday to Judy. Oh! one of you were in my backyard. NYC is about 15-20 minutes from us (so all these towns of NJ are often time considered as suburbs of NYC!!) :-). NYC has amazing number of parks and water bodies and beaches (many of which outsiders does not even know); and the parks have such great flowers and flowering plants. It’s amazing.

  10. Fun tour of the Highline. I haven’t made it there yet (it was built after I moved), but anything green is definitely needed there (as the young woman on the fire escape-doubling-as-a-balcony proves).

    • Do you remember all the little community gardens there used to be? Giuliani managed to give most of them away to developers.

  11. Those are some of the best pics of the High Line that I’ve seen. Great job to Judy.

    Philly is having some good conversations around reclaiming some abandoned elevated rail lines, a la the High Line. I think it would be beyond amazing and really hope it happens!

  12. Thanks for all the birthday wishes!

    The High Line is an amazing urban space — very green and restful and yet absolutely in the middle of the city, completely surrounded. Usually I try hard to get photos of flowers and green spaces without people in them, to capture the sense of being in nature. But at the High Line, it was clear to me that the people and the city were an integral part of the space.

    One of the people at the office I was visiting in NYC is lucky to be able to walk to and from work every day on the High Line. When I was afraid it wouldn’t stop raining long enough for me to get photos, he assured me that I would love walking the High Line in the rain.

    If you are ever anywhere near, go walk the length of this. It’s a mile of abandoned train tracks overgrown with weeds (aka native perennials) turned into urban art, with lots of space for wandering as well as sitting and musing.

  13. It is one of the best things NYC did for the urban space, reclamation of lost urban areas, tourists and residents. Cities need to be greened up and wildlife needs places to live in cities. Now only if the pigeons would get the hint.

  14. Happy Birthday Judy and a big thank you for taking pics.
    Having never heard of the High Line before – I am amazed at what they have been able to create there. Astonishing and how great for people growing in a city to get close to nature.
    There is an urban disused train line running almost the entire length of Edinburgh and over the years has been left to naturalise and is a well used resource in the City.

  15. I’ve been to Manhattan once since the High Line opened and I wasn’t able to fit it into my schedule. I was already itching to see it. Now, as someone who grew up in New York City and moved almost 40 years ago, I must go. Perhaps in September, when I plan to visit the City again.

  16. Thanks so much to you (and Judy) for posting this. I had read about this in the New York Times and was curious but never got a chance to “see” it like this. Great job!

    • I bet you can do some interesting bird watching on the High Line. I’ll bet it is full of birds during the migrations.

      • I suppose the question is whether the birders can tear themselves away from Central Park during migration. It seems like it would be a very good place for birds.

  17. Happy belated birthday Judy and many happy returns! The highline is gorgeous & I’d love to see something like that in my city!

  18. What a lovely garden, and so good that it is public. I know there are urban roof gardens here in London where I live but I don’t think any of them are open to the public as far as I know but it is an excellent way of utilising space and adding more green to a city. Here in London there are even honey bee farms on some of these roof gardens.
    Great pictures, thanks for the tour!

  19. I would love to see a public garden like this! Oh and Happy Birthday Judy! I’ve heard of this park before and seen a few pictures but not as good as these. What a great insight. I would love to visit NYC and definitely High Line! Love, love, love it! I saw some interesting planting in disused train tracks in Vancouver when I was there a few years back, down the centre of some streets, just a fabulous idea! Have a great time at the bloggers fling 🙂

  20. I think it is a great way to use the old railways. If I ever come to New York again, I will definitely see this. Cities like N.Y can never get too many green areas like this.

  21. Happy Birthday to your wife!! How wonderful is she for getting these amazing shots for you! This garden is just too fantastic! I love the urban city backdrop behind these stunning garden beds…it is a change of pace!! Just goes to show how gardens can enhance our world!! Bravo!!!

  22. This park is amazing, what a brilliant idea and such an innovative use for an otherwise derelict structure! It really is something else.

  23. Hi Jason, I love this ‘park’ (or whatever it is) and consider it one of Oudolf’s masterpiece, even more than the Chicago Lurie Garden. I think it is a lot more ‘interactive’ with the city and the people, this is not only a place you come to watch and spend a little time, it is also a place you can choose live and walk, a path I wish I could make every morning before going to work. At the end of the day it follows old rails so I guess it links important parts of the City.
    Happy Birthday to your wife, although belated and although the she made a gift to me with these pics rather than the way around.

  24. Hi Jason – brilliant photos your wife took of the High Line – I’ve read so much about it and seen many photos of it, but good to have some other new views of it – brilliant stuff. An eccentric, but wonderful garden.

  25. We were in NYC last summer and took this tour. Amazing that a train actually came in to that area. Those apartments are just a few feet from the tracks! I hope she walked through the Chelsea Market/Old Nabisco Cookie Factory which is where the first Oreo cookie was made. I love the history of those old buildings.

  26. Pingback: Judy Visits The High Line In NYC | wangxiaohui1229

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