Rooftop Gardening in Brooklyn

Matthew and I are from small towns, lots of land, green grass, backyards, farms. Now we live in New York. Often we get romantic about wide open spaces, getting a cottage and starting a cat sanctuary upstate (mostly Pamela), and very often – gardening. Matthew is Ohio born and raised. He spent his childhood planting and harvesting, once he got a wheelbarrow for his birthday – awesome, right? For a few years we have been doing the window box with some plants in them, but Essy usually likes to crash into them and sleep, or Xanadu eats the beans off them. This year we decided to build a garden on our roof! It has alot of free space, good light and the ability to grow anything – maybe. So for the next few months, this blog is going to follow these adventures and see if we’re successful or hints/tips to other rooftop urban gardeners.

First the building of the garden!

We live in Brooklyn, NY in a 6 floor building that has a amazing rooftop. We reside on the 5th floor. Thankfully we have a elevator and freight elevator, but neither elevator goes to the roof. In fact, we have 2 roofs, but the roof we wanted to garden on is the one on the other side of our building. What does this mean? This means going to Home Depot, buying supplies, "borrowing" their shopping carts and pushing the stuff to our building (and taking the carts back of course! hate those people that don’t take the cart back), loading the supplies down some stairs, taking the freight elevator up, lugging the supplies all the way down the hall to the other side of the building, then lugging it upstairs to the roof, then across the roof to the other side. Easy right? Well imagine wood, supplies and 28 bags of potting soil – with a girl who has the weakest arms ever. It’s also 90 degrees out.

This first post is about building the boxes. We built 2 4×4 boxes. We were just going to build a 8×8 box, but we decided this would separate plants better and make it more manageable for multiple reasons. We got weather treated wood (which can’t be cut at Home Depot btw due to a chemical in it) and outside wood/deck screws. While making the boxes, our wireless drill decided to die just before finishing the first one, so we had to hold off finishing the boxes until the day after.

//static.flickr.com/4020/4648247869_4c071f561b_b

//static.flickr.com/4062/4648881256_7b7344ce24_b

//static.flickr.com/4052/4648881354_35b5b470b7_b

//static.flickr.com/4058/4648266921_cdfea12a26_b

We needed some power for the tools so had to figure out how to find power on the roof!

//static.flickr.com/4054/4650712507_209dfb7b3b_b

The finished 4×4 boxes.

//static.flickr.com/4020/4650712481_e728e6f200_b

The finished boxes lined up on the roof where we want them.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>