November 16, 2009

City Garden, St. Louis, MO

by guest blogger Katydid on the Street (all photos courtesy of Katydid)

When I was in St. Louis in September I visited the City Garden and was very impressed with this new park in Downtown St. Louis, not that far from the Arch, which has successfully incorporated native plants into a small, urban park design that is also packed with water features and artwork. The horticulturalists from the Missouri Botanical Garden helped with the selection of native plants for several rain gardens. Although it is a very constructed park, with many paths and benches to accommodate a high level of foot traffic, more than half the site is permeable. Read more about the landscape design here.

I was impressed with the size of the trees that had been transplanted just last spring including a native oak (Quercus genus)

and red maple (Acer rubrum).

This being St. Louis, there was an abundance of cardinal flower (Lobelia cardinalis)

and there were also some very whimsical sculptures that made some of the large trees look not so big.

The most popular feature of the park by far was the water fountains. This fountain shown above was a plaza where water would shoot up from the ground at irregular intervals and irregular speeds. A wide array of people from toddlers, to teenagers to grandparents seemed to enjoy walking through and playing in this surprising fountain.

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