The Hanging Gardens of Babylon

Husband and I stayed on the 17th floor of a hotel in Los Angeles last week.  The area was hilly with very tall buildings at varying levels all around.  We had a nice view of rooftops and nooks that had been transformed into gardens, dog parks, putting greens, and tree filled  patios. I always liked the descriptions of the gardens Nebuchadnezzar built for his wife, and they came to mind as I gazed out of our hotel window.  It amazes me they could grow such large trees in such small containers.


Husband said he would grow pumpkins on our roof back home if he could.  I can imagine ways a person could do it. There would be some challenges,  of course. Trees would be a little hard to manage.  Think of how much garden space you could add if rooftoops  were available!

What would you grow on your roof?


23 thoughts on “The Hanging Gardens of Babylon”

  1. Rise and Shine Baboons,

    This is an interesting question, but before I answer it, I have to build the footings that support the roof. After all, if we do this, the thing has to remain standing. And how much dirt do I really want up there? HMMM. After all, the old sod huts of yore housed all kinds of critters. What critters do I want to live with dangling from above?

    After building the footings, I would decorate them or plant vines then add an outdoor spiral staircase to access the Sky-patio with raised beds and lounge furniture, an outdoor kitchen, and a telescope for night viewing of stars.

    I might just move up there. When I was a kid a favorite treat was to get on the roof, usually to clean out the eave troughs. But from there I could see everything in the neighborhood from my high perch. It was a feeling of power and privilege. But what I really wanted was a tree house.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I have seen some nice roof gardens from top of Mpls’ Foshay Tower et al. But the best was the rooftop of a pre-school I worked at in Brooklyn NY circa 1975. It was housed in an old brownstone, and was on the 2nd floor (the owners lived on the 1st). They had created a play space on the rooftop, incl. a little wading pool. I don’t recall now what else was up there, but the walls around the edge were sufficiently high to keep the preschoolers in. 🙂

    I think they may have had pots of tomatoes up there, too – that’s what I would grow on a rooftop – must have real tomatoes. And herbs.
    Straw bales would probably work well up there, no?

    Liked by 2 people

  3. OT: Posting this again in case people didn’t see it yesterday. I have some more plants to give away.
    *Two hydrangeas (nice pink flowers),
    *one foxglove.
    *Maybe some tall campanula (not the invasive weed).
    *One bleeding heart

    You dig. Prefer pickup this week since I’ll be in Rochester most of next week. Email or text me.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. If I had a green roof, I would grow lots of different varieties of sedum. A few tall ones and lots of creeping ones. I would also have an earth box with some tomato plants.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. I’ve been thinking about this for the day and in order to plant on my roof we have to have some serious fantasy involved. With such an old house with such Steep and Tall roof I can’t Envision planting up there. But if I had a different kind of roof and I had an elevator to get up there easily and plenty of water source so that I didn’t have to carry the water up, I suppose I could put my Bales on the roof. Five tomato plants, three basil, one cilantro, one chive, two kinds of hot peppers, maybe potatoes and a couple of corn stalks.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Steep roof: you know how they stack shingles when they’re working? Put a couple flat, which gives a flat(er) place to stack the next bundles.
      I’m thinking perhaps straw bales could be done the same way; A row flat, which gives us room to put another row perpendicular to them.

      Viola! Next year I’ll bring you more but you’ll have to get them up there yourself.

      Liked by 2 people

  6. Our friends Mike and Ann, had an earth sheltered house when they lived in Northfield. A large part of their roof was covered with turf and wildflowers. When you approached the house from the back, you could walk right up there and enjoy the view of the surroundings from that elevated perch. It was quite lovely.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. i have an ambition to be the roof guy
    have mentioned it to s couple architects and they just font get it. new york city visit 15 years ago spurred the thought
    rooftop space is available everywhere that a rooftop thing is not done. restaurants. gardens, coffee shops, hot tubs meditation areas, sunbathing perches,… as for gardening a system where you throw a couple brackets over the peak and adjust the angle of the dangle to have sheets of plywood or 2x12s up there is pretty easy to imagine. a watering system to take care of dry spells is a easy with the technology available today,
    i could have fun with rooftops til i’m dead. i live roof tops.
    i also have visions of rooftop penthouses to be set atop the tallest buildings in the major cities of the world, why wouldn’t you want to go to the top of the ids and then take an elevator up one more floor to your place on the roof? pool patio 5000 sw ft with 12’ ceilings and a patio on top of that?
    i will see if i can go back to look at some of the ideas for pods to be placed by giant helicopters the pods are quite large reminding me of bucky fullers geodesic domes to be lifted into place by helicopters except that youvplavevthe pods on the roof tops instead of on a regular city lot.

    Liked by 1 person

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