Greetings, friends and colleagues! We’ve wrapped a fantastic season of NYC green roofs and private garden installations in and around the city, and we are now in the process of reflecting on our successes, meditating on ways we might improve, and generally ramping up for an even more exciting 2023. With that in mind, we’d like to share a few of our Highview highlights from this past season, and would love to know what you’ve been up to, as well! Drop us a line any time, or find us on Instagram, where we’re endeavoring this year to share more and more glamor shots of our in-process builds with our green infrastructure community in NYC and at large.
Project Summary: Private Residence, Long Island
Project Type: Monolithic Extensive Green Roof
Plantings: Sedum Tiles
We packed up a cargo van and headed out to sunny Long Island, NY for this one-day install of a small but mighty extensive green roof. Our team worked with a local fabricator here in the city to design custom edging for the interesting slopes and angles of this roof. We secured several dozen sedum tiles from our friends at Kawasaki Greenhouses and planted these on a healthy bed of quality top soil.
In a matter of a few hours, we had transformed this otherwise bland, gray roof—visible from several upper-story windows in the main house—into a vibrant greenscape which will help capture stormwater, prolong the life of the sauna roof, and nourish local pollinators. We can only hope that an errant duck navigating the ins and outs of the Long Island Sound might one day land here to survey the pool and assess its potential for a refreshing dip…
Project Summary: Backyard Garden Oasis, SoHo
Project Type/Features: Intensive Plantings, Custom Planters, Irrigation, Lighting
Plantings: Native Trees, Perennials, Shrubs
We were very happy with the results of this backyard terrace garden installed in SoHo earlier this year. We once again teamed up with a favorite metal fabricator in town and worked together to design and install these sweeping, curved steel planters, which encourage a beautiful, natural curved pathway among the blooming perennial flowers, trees and shrubs we selected for the plant palette.
A custom steel trellis supports climbing Boston Ivy, and three trees—a serviceberry, a flowering dogwood, and an eastern redbud—break up the space and add a lot of vertical interest to the greenery. We chose a mixture of plants which would perform well in the sometimes shady inner courtyard surrounded by the several stories’ tall neighboring buildings. The azaleas, ferns, rhododendrons, astilbe, and ajuga are fairing particularly well! In some of the sunnier spots we favored a mix of geraniums, creeping juniper, and Japanese fountain grass (‘hakonechloa’) which drape delicately over the edge of the custom planters and soften their hard steel edges.
Custom lighting in and around the plantings turns this backyard garden into a nighttime paradise and, when the firepit and grill are finally lit up, will add to an exciting, year-round gathering space for friends, neighbors, and family.
Project Summary: Semi-Intensive Green Roof, Upper Manhattan
Project Type/Features: Semi-Intensive Monolithic Green Roof
Plantings: Native Perennial Plugs
This project represents some new territory for us, and is one of our favorite (relatively small) green roof installations in recent memory. Our client wanted green roof options to cover both the breezeway which separates the building’s two inner courtyards from one another, as well as the roof of the entrance to the parking garage below. While the breezeway roof enjoys a substantial amount of direct sun, the parking garage entrance roof is almost always in the shade.
One of Highview’s resident horticultural experts, Erik Facteau, put together an amazing mix of plants suited to each environment and, in the heat of this unforgiving summer, we laid down the foundations for two truly exciting green roof biomes. Stay tuned as these babies fill in and grow up!
Project Summary: Extensive Green Roof, Roche Molecular, Branchburg, NJ
Project Type/Features: Extensive Green Roof (Tray System)
Our friends at Roche Molecular were so pleased with the first round of green roof improvements we made to their facility that they invited us back for more! Over the course of just a couple days, we carted hundreds of sedum-filled green roof trays to cover a breezeway connecting two sections of this sprawling research and development facility situated on a beautiful campus in nearby Branchburg, NJ. The Highview team put our new ladder lift to the test, which made hauling the 80+ pound trays a breeze. While on site, we visited our previous install and were excited to find a plethora of grasshoppers in and amongst the sedum, which is thriving. Did you know that 90% of a juvenile kestrel’s diet consists solely of grasshoppers? Perhaps it’s time for us to start recommending perches with our installs…