August 5, 2007

More Philadelphia greene

Image: Front yard gardens on 43rd Street near Larchwood

Studying a street map of downtown Philadelphia (east of the Schuylkill River) I found more streets named for trees: Cherry, Filbert, and Juniper. (There is a Wood Street.) Using incorrect directions to the Mill Creek Watershed Garden I discovered Larchwood and Osage (as in Osage Orange) Streets. Fortunately I had better directions to the Penn New School at 43rd and Locust Streets. The school grounds were designed to attenuate stormwater runoff. Some of the best practices include a porous asphalt playground and rain gardens. A rockbed in the native plant garden is used to capture stormwater flowing down the schoolyard.
 





Increasing tree cover is another technique to manage stormwater runoff. Rows of trees like those in the photo below have been planted at public schools southwest of downtown Philadelphia.

Image: New allee of white oaks
Existing tree cover and well-tended front yard plantings also help to capture, filter, and direct rainfall to the soil. Also, these green spaces are great visual amenities in city neighborhoods.





There is country in the city. I walked by four farmers' markets; I bought "ready to eat" peaches at two of them. One of the markets sold produce used in African and Caribbean cuisine. Also, I saw several home gardens planted with herbs and vegetables.





Image: Flowers and produce at the market at Rittenhouse Square


 On a whimsical note, I came across the Squirrel Hill Falls Amphitheater. It is definitely a hidden gem.



2 comments:

  1. very interesting post! philly seems like a beautiful city. what are the Caribbean fruits and vegetables that you saw?

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  2. I don't know the names of all the produce I saw but they were similar to ones I saw as a child in local markets (in Jamaica) as well as in Latino markets in New York and Boston. I saw yams and cassava and mangoes and pineapples among other things. The shoppers at this particular "market" were black - American and foreign born.

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