Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Shooting with Russians

The view north over the Museum of Natural History, from the Upper West Side terrace where we spent the morning, the first of several phases of filming. The owner of the terrace kindly left us to ourselves, and for the next few hours I think every single flower was given its time in the spotlight for the 26 minute episode that RTVi will air here and in the motherland on New York gardens. Elena, the on-air talent and producer is hoping to expand it into a series.

I designed this very laid-back and flowerful garden a year ago, and we planted it last June, I think. There are lots of roses and perennials and small trees like apple, pear, maple and crabapple, all on the 16th floor. Also clipped yews as hedges and backdrops for shrubs and flowers.

The producer's feet, as she types her storyline on her Mac. We were all barefoot to walk through the immaculate penthouse apartment. Yesterday she filmed a story on New York bees.

Huh. Aphids. Rarely have I seen such a flash mob of the green 'uns. Yuck. I couldn't help myself, and started squishing with a piece of tissue paper.

But look what was lurking! Watch your backs, aphids...Jaws music...du dum du dum du dum!

The garden lion.

I have a soft spot for phlox. And phlox have a soft spot for mildew in this weather.

The Hydrangea paniculata was looking very good and quite pink for a white flower.

The pears had pears. Well, four pears. They had more last year, straight from the nursery. They are different varieties, so cross-pollination is taken care of. Too much wind?

The Eskimo Sunset (!) maple was looking very good and happy in its eastern corner.

The leaves have nice details. I get a little tired of the ubiquitous maroon leaves of Japanese maples.

My calling card, I'm afraid: Abraham Darby...

And...I thought I had it. But I don't. I have...forgotten. This wonderful perennial. I am emailing the nurseries tomorrow to get an ID. This was a case of going shopping and using something new because it looked good. [7/8/2009: thank you, Rachel! It's astrantia.]

Here it is underplanted around the roses.


Purple, white, chartreuse, and hot pink, not shown.

I wasn' t expecting to talk so much, for a programme that is broadcast in Russian, and came away a little hoarse. Having to drum up instant gardening advice for gardeners in Moscow was a bit of a stretch...um? Plyease first to cut hole in pyirmafrarst?

We'll have a rematch next week, after I've done some studying...


  1. i was just perusing your blog and came across your entry entitled "Inside".. what is the brand of that yellow bag, if you don't mind me asking? it's so perfect for summer! i love it. :) thanks. - tina

  2. just gorgeous marie, every last bit, especially the unidentified...dah-i am in awe...how do you say that in russian?

  3. Beence, Yes, Sir, I did. You may cuff me now...

    M.heart - yeah, that's a pretty good one...

    MelRox...thank you, I think.

    Tina, the bag is Cleo and Patek

    Rachel, thank you!! I had the A but thought there was a ph and some ll's...:-)

    Bonbon Oiseau: Now the unidentified is identified, Astrantia!

  4. OK...Racel's already identified it!
    And that Abraham Darby! God! I miss it!

  5. Love that maple! I may have to copy you. I had no idea you were anti-annual...I'm crazy for them.

  6. Ellen - I am not actually anti-annual - I love stuffing them into nooks and crannies. What I saw when I went to Butchart (sp?) Gardens on Vancouver Island gave me an allergic reaction which Vince remembers vividly: thousands of massed, old-school style (balls of red begonias) annuals in beds (the same beds I grew up with - on a smaller scale - and loved, btw)- I just felt perennials would serve better - and they do have gorgeous perennials, too.


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