Ramblings of a "New American" Gardener

Brooklyn Garden featured in Leaf magazine

March 11, 2013


My Brooklyn garden–still very much a work in progress–is featured in the Spring issue of Leaf magazine. Click on the Leaf cover above to read and subscribe to Leaf. Click on any images below to enlarge them.

My Brooklyn garden profiled in Leaf magazine

My Brooklyn garden profiled in Leaf magazine





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{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

Rob (OurFrenchGarden) March 12, 2013 at 1:54 am

I’ve just been reading it. I subscribe to ‘dirt du jour’ who mentioned Leaf magazine and there you were. I guess they were spot on as they state the Conservancy open days for Fed Twist followed by ‘the Brooklyn garden remains private and secluded’. Exactly.


James Golden March 12, 2013 at 6:09 pm

Rob, merely a rhetorical turn to bring it to an end. You’re welcome whenever you come to hip and happening Brooklyn. I was happy Susan mentioned the Open Days dates. And it was nice to see the Garden Conservancy’s ad for Open Days immediately following. Now I have to find ‘dirt du jour’. Hope it’s not in French.


Laurrie March 12, 2013 at 7:55 am

I have looked at and studied both of your gardens in such detail online that I instantly recognized the Brooklyn space in the magazine. I was not reading the words, just leafing through (leafing thru Leaf. . . ) and I saw the photos and immediately knew it was your garden, and your own photos too.

I love how very different the country garden and the city garden are, but they both have your designer imprint that stresses imposed structure and easy flow. How great that your private garden was featured!


James Golden March 12, 2013 at 6:12 pm

Thanks, Laurrie. I can’t see the similarity myself, but I’m probably too close to the gardens to be a valid judge. Brooklyn does satisfy my need for some right angles and parallel lines in my life.


Cindy at enclos*ure March 13, 2013 at 7:57 am

I love the very subtle fountain bubbler, which I think you’re added since you last posted about the garden. I hope the little trees are doing well.


James Golden March 16, 2013 at 7:28 am

I tried out the fountain bubbler, then removed it. I find I much prefer the subtle shimmer of the still water moved by breezes. But I do admit it makes for a better photograph, so will keep it in reserve. The Gleditsia I took so much trouble to find are doing well, though they need stronger trunks to support the canopies that want to develop. I had to cut them back several times. I’ll work to grow taller before spreading out.


Wanda (The Garden Wanderer) March 14, 2013 at 9:16 am

Congratulations James! The garden and photos look great. It’s nice to have this printed record of your project.


James Golden March 16, 2013 at 7:23 am

Thanks, Wanda. I was fortunate Hurricane Irene took that giant tree down (at a removal cost of $8500). We never would have made that costly decision voluntarily. It was good to work from a blank slate. I don’t think this garden will begin to look as intended for at least two years, but this is a nice record to have. And having it publicly “exposed” so to speak, drives my decision making process in a new way.


allan becker March 14, 2013 at 5:08 pm

This tribute to your Brooklyn garden is long overdue. I’ve been wondering how long it would take for the garden
writing community to publicly acknowledge your talent.


James Golden March 15, 2013 at 7:39 am

Thank you very much, Allan. I, of course, see the flaws and look forward to two years in the future when it’s more finished, the walls are covered with vines, and the trees have grown into, well, trees.


Les March 15, 2013 at 5:13 am

Congratulations on completing the garden and on the article. They both look good.


James Golden March 15, 2013 at 7:42 am

Thanks. The planting is only about ten months old and will be changing significantly this spring, depending on what survived and what I can afford. I took your advice and mulched the hell out of my Tetrapanax ‘Steroidal Giant’.


Faisal Grant March 16, 2013 at 4:19 am

James, first, congratulations. It’s funny how gardens are never finished. The moment we’ve turned our backs on them we find there’s another bit, or another sweep that needs tweaking. That’s part of the fun, isn’t it? I’ve heard of painters who never finish a picture, always seeing just one more thing…


James Golden March 16, 2013 at 7:31 am

Yes, Faisal. There’s the conceptual goal of finishing, but it’s an illusion. The garden really is a collection of living organisms (some are invisible, under the soil) in some kind of structured environment, no matter how naturalistic, and living things change continuously.


Calvin March 19, 2013 at 12:12 pm

Great photos, excellent feature, James. You deserve acclaim, for both gardens. Calvin


James Golden March 20, 2013 at 10:25 pm

Thanks, Calvin. Can’t say I’m comfortable with that word “acclaim,” but I appreciate the thought.


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