Erika Harvey's blog

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Author: 
Erika Harvey
Work continues as our staff and volunteers move north, trimming back plant material to make way for spring growth. Photo by Annik La Farge.
 

We have just completed our fourth week of High Line Spring Cutback.

Spring Cutback is an intense six-week-long undertaking that involves trimming back the High Line’s wild grasses, perennials, and shrubs to make way for new spring growth. It’s our biggest horticultural task of the year and High Line Gardeners couldn’t do it without the help of a dedicated group of volunteers.

Stop by the park and see the transformation underway, and follow us after the jump for an update on our recent work.

Author: 
Erika Harvey
Popping up throughout the park, this small spring bulb can be easy to miss.
 

The High Line’s planting design is inspired by the self-seeded landscape that grew up between the rail tracks after the trains stopped running. The High Line includes more than 300 species of perennials, grasses, shrubs, and trees — chosen for their hardiness, adaptability, diversity, and seasonal variation in color and texture. Some of the species that originally grew on the High Line’s rail bed are reflected in the park landscape today.

This week we share with you one of our Gardeners’ current favorites.

Author: 
Erika Harvey
Spike winter hazel blooms with plentiful yellow flowers in late winter or early spring.
 

The High Line’s planting design is inspired by the self-seeded landscape that grew up between rail tracks after the trains stopped running in the 1980s. Today, the High Line includes more than 300 species of perennials, grasses, shrubs, and trees — chosen for their hardiness, adaptability, diversity, and seasonal variation in color and texture. Some of the species that originally grew on the High Line’s rail bed are reflected in the park landscape today.

This week we share with you one of our Gardeners’ current favorites.

Author: 
Erika Harvey
Pat Jonas is one of the High Line’s most dedicated volunteers. Seen here helping with mulching near West 26th Street earlier this year, Pat has worked closely with our horticulture staff and is returning to help out with her second season of Spring Cutback.
 

Spring Cutback is a monumental task – one that took us 1,200 hours to complete last year. This year, we have twice as much work to do. The High Line doubled in length when the new section opened last June, giving us one mile of parkland with more than 100,000 plants to prepare for spring this year.

The High Line's unique design, with gravel mulch and railroad tracks running through the planting beds, makes it impossible to use power equipment to cut back the plants. It is for this reason that Spring Cutback is an all-hands-on-deck scenario, requiring the hard work and dedication of our entire staff and many volunteers over the course of six weeks.

Today we get to know one of our most dedicated volunteers, Pat Jonas, who has been working side-by-side with our gardeners on various projects for more than a year, and joins us again this season to lend a hand with Spring Cutback.

Author: 
Erika Harvey
Dawn bodnant viburnum has bright pink flowers that are at their peak this time of year.
 

The High Line’s planting design is inspired by the self-seeded landscape that took root on the elevated rail tracks after the trains stopped running. The High Line includes more than 300 species of perennials, grasses, shrubs, and trees — chosen for their hardiness, adaptability, diversity, and seasonal variation in color and texture. Some of the species that originally grew on the High Line’s rail bed are reflected in the park landscape today.

This week we share with you two of our Gardeners’ current favorites.

Author: 
Erika Harvey
Sarah Sze’s complex architectural sculpture rises up on either side of the pathway, forming a gateway that visitors can pass through. Photo by Iwan Baan
 

This week, the US Art Critics Association (AICA-USA) announced its annual awards recognizing artists, curators, museums, galleries, and other cultural institutions for their work in the past year.

Topping the list in the category of “Best Project in a Public Space” was Sarah Sze for her High Line Art installation, Still Life with Landscape (Model for a Habitat).

Author: 
Erika Harvey
An aerial photo of our staff and volunteers hard at work between West 18th Street and West 20th Street. Photo by Rick Darke
 

We have just completed our second week of High Line Spring Cutback.

Spring Cutback is an intense six week-long process in which we cut back the High Line’s wild grasses, perennials, and shrubs to make way for new spring growth. It’s our biggest horticultural task of the year and High Line Gardeners couldn’t do it without the help of a dedicated group of volunteers. Stop by the park and see the transformation underway as spring bulbs and new green growth pop up, and follow us after the jump for an update on this week’s work.

Author: 
Erika Harvey
The High Line Flickr Pool is an great resource for beautiful photographs of the park. One of these images, taken by five contributors to the Flickr Pool, will be selected as the next High Line Print.
 

With more than 1,500 contributors, the High Line Flickr Pool gathers some of the best photographs of the park. The images are displayed in a rotating gallery on our Web site, giving High Line fans from afar, and those New Yorkers stuck in the office a great way to keep track of park life.

This year we are expanding our merchandise program, and among the new offerings will be frame-worthy prints of the High Line. When looking for photographs to be featured as prints, of course we knew where to go.

We’ve selected five of our favorite horticulture images from the Flickr Pool, and we need your help picking one of them to reproduce as a High Line Print.

Follow us after the jump to see the full-size images and vote for your favorite.

Author: 
Erika Harvey
The rail yards section will extend the High Line’s distinctive design vocabulary established south of West 30th Street, evoking the High Line’s history as an active freight rail line, and the unique self-seeded landscape that grew up between the tracks when the trains stopped running in the 1980s.
 

Last night we unveiled the initial design concepts for the rail yards section of the High Line at a community input meeting at Public School 11 in Chelsea.

More than 400 neighbors, supporters, members, and friends turned out to listen to James Corner and Ric Scofidio, of the High Line Design Team, present their concepts, share their feedback, and ask questions.

The never-before-seen images represent the first vision for the High Line’s unique landscape at the rail yards, which is still overgrown with wildflowers and grasses that grew up between the tracks when the trains stopped running in the 1980s.

Follow us after the jump to learn more and view the designs.

Author: 
Erika Harvey
Volunteers and High Line Gardeners gather tools and supplies at the end of a chilly Spring Cutback shift on Tuesday, March 6. Photo by Liz Ligon.
 

We have just completed week one of High Line Spring Cutback!

Spring Cutback is an intense six week-long process in which we cut back the High Line’s wild grasses, perennials, and shrubs to make way for new spring growth. It’s our biggest task of the year and High Line Gardeners couldn’t do it without the help of a dedicated group of volunteers. Stop by the park and see the transformation underway as spring bulbs and new green growth pop up.

Follow us after the jump for an update and photos from our first week.

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