(now and again)

Tokyo DIY Gardening Hands-on gardening for a crowded city

Vertical Gardens
Rubbish Drop-off Roof Garden
Rubbish Drop-off Roof Garden

A lovely twist to the usually forboding and odorous gaping deadspace.

Towering Tethered Sunflowers
Towering Tethered Sunflowers

Tethered giants in Shibuya backstreet.

Light Hanging Garden
Light Hanging Garden

An easy hanging garden created by hanging a light planter from a tree branch.

Apartment Block Garden Fixtures
Apartment Block Garden Fixtures

Affixing small hangers and substantial brackets to increase the plant population.

Powerpole Hanging Basket
Powerpole Hanging Basket

S-hook and hanger on powerpole climbing peg makes for a stable hanging garden.

Highrise Balcony Gardens
Highrise Balcony Gardens

Cramped balconies nurture lush microclimates

Hanging Pots off a Breeze Block Wall
Hanging Pots off a Breeze Block Wall

Simple and novel solution.

Tiered Garden in Breeze Blocks
Tiered Garden in Breeze Blocks

A bit of life and color in a tight inner-city driveway.

Harajuku Flower Pot Wall more Grandma than Hipster
Harajuku Flower Pot Wall more Grandma than Hipster

That’s a lot of flowers for one tiny space.

Green Corner
Green Corner

A great way to create extra gardening space without encroaching on the narrow street or cramped inner courtyard.

Potplants Secured with Bricks
Potplants Secured with Bricks

A stable and designerly solution

Laundry Pole Hanging Garden
Laundry Pole Hanging Garden

Horizontal garden hanging on a laundry pole.

Hanging Garden
Hanging Garden

Chains and hooks and nails and pots….

Impromptu Hanging Garden
Impromptu Hanging Garden

City infrastructure fosters independent green.

First Floor Goya
First Floor Goya

Easy growing.

Video: Rooftop Gardening Voyeur
Video: Rooftop Gardening Voyeur

A chance encounter up high.

Suburban Rooftop Jungle
Suburban Rooftop Jungle

Beautiful, out of control hobby.

Driveway Tiered Garden
Driveway Tiered Garden

Everyday driveway gardening.

Morning glory green curtain
Morning glory green curtain

All the apartments have nets, perhaps to deter birds, yet few are so well used.

Second Floor Garden
Second Floor Garden

I love the variety of plants, and the way the garden adds onto what is already there.

Dense Tiered Garden
Dense Tiered Garden

Bricks and all kinds of junk.

Goya Awning
Goya Awning

Shade, food, community.

Mini Farm on Concrete Pad
Mini Farm on Concrete Pad

Recycled and simple materials, like plastic sacks as container pots

Level 9 Meguro
Level 9 Meguro

Dead space becomes a place of relaxation and rejuvenation.

Lush Potted Alley
Lush Potted Alley

Permanence of impermanent structure; Relaxed hiding space; Natural cooling; Shade.

Stepped Garden and Imposing Creeper
Stepped Garden and Imposing Creeper

Humble color + striking feature.

Simple Clothes Hanger Garden
Simple Clothes Hanger Garden

Laundry pole + clothes hangers in Omotesando

Curbside Tiered Garden
Curbside Tiered Garden

Molded to the edge of the plot.

Polystyrene Planting
Polystyrene Planting

Flexible, tiered, lithe.

Two Plants Cover Home
Two Plants Cover Home

Ample plant growth in the most minimal of urban spaces

Frugal Hanging Garden
Frugal Hanging Garden

Simple, robust, flexible

Succulents in rusty recycled cans
Succulents in rusty recycled cans

Another only-in-Tokyo street beauty

PopcornHomestead Curtain
PopcornHomestead Curtain

Prolific and generous Tokyo gardener Joan Bailey is documenting her new and improved green curtain.

Green Curtain Tokyo
Green Curtain Tokyo

Family blog documenting a green curtain.

Balcony Gardening Tokyo
Balcony Gardening Tokyo

A lovely family gardening experiment

Tiered Garden and Plot
Tiered Garden and Plot

Footpath facing tiered gardens & plot.

Wire Pot Plant Hangers
Wire Pot Plant Hangers

Wire twisted into pot plant holders to decorate roadside residential fencing.

Independent Green Roof
Independent Green Roof

Untended bicycle parking bay results in lush unintentional green roof.

Small green wall improves sidewalk
Small green wall improves sidewalk

the wall uses minimal space to provide a green corridor

Clothes Hanger Garden
Clothes Hanger Garden

Car port hanging garden constructed from modified hangers

High Climber in Twine
High Climber in Twine

An interesting take on the classic balcony-supported green curtain.

Beer Crate Roof Garden
Beer Crate Roof Garden

Transferring the principles of the Tokyo curbside garden a few meters skyward.

Eye-level Pot Plant Rack
Eye-level Pot Plant Rack

Precarious yet thoughtful, this construction does not intrude into the narrow thoroughfare any further than the curb line.

Jungle on High in Yanaka
Jungle on High in Yanaka

A mysterious and slightly foreboding balcony jungle in Yanaka.

S-Hooks are Tokyo’s super glue
S-Hooks are Tokyo’s super glue

this hanging pot relies on an S-hook to attach itself to the existing built environment

Pots Trump Cars in Kokubunji
Pots Trump Cars in Kokubunji

Space for gardening more important that private transport in a leafy Tokyo suburb.

Striking Hanging Garden in Yanaka
Striking Hanging Garden in Yanaka

Hanging planter space 3m above a Yanaka alley.

Makeshift plastic rope trellis for morning glory
Makeshift plastic rope trellis for morning glory

Is this a new trend? I am looking forward to watching these plants grow this summer.

Tree Branch Hanging Pots
Tree Branch Hanging Pots

A simple solution for a hanging garden on a narrow Yanaka footpath.

Lush Green Wall Collage
Lush Green Wall Collage

Unplanned and hectic but built up slowly over many years. Temporary in form and materials but not in presence.

Pocket Garden in Astroturf
Pocket Garden in Astroturf

A cute pocket garden constructed from waste materials.

Secure Pot Plant Construction
Secure Pot Plant Construction

There’s no shame in tying a few pots up on your wall with a bit of old rope!

Hanging Gardens of Harajuku
Hanging Gardens of Harajuku

Precarious hanging gardens one step back from Tokyo’s fashion district.

Green Wall in Pot Plants
Green Wall in Pot Plants

Strategic pot plant placement creates a makeshift green wall in Shibuya.

Pipe-Based Potplant Holder
Pipe-Based Potplant Holder

External piping engaged as potplant holder in central Harajuku.

Cute Bookshelves
Cute Bookshelves

“Very cute outdoor shelving for plants. Like book shelves”

Let’s cover Tokyo in winter lavendar
Let's cover Tokyo in winter lavendar

Covering a Tokyo building with lavender plants, or creating small lavender city farms . . .

Simple Planter Tiered Garden
Simple Planter Tiered Garden

Planters on planters.

Small green curtain at factory car shop
Small green curtain at factory car shop

It’s great to see people make use of work time and space for some vegetable gardening.

Trained Creeping Fence
Trained Creeping Fence

Coffee shop owner appropriates dead space, fence and creeper to create green lane.

Anyone know the name of this flowering weed?
Anyone know the name of this flowering weed?

I wasn’t sure if it was an intentional plant

Spectacular Goya Curtain in Tokyo Suburbs
Spectacular Goya Curtain in Tokyo Suburbs

Amazing first-time goya curtain

Azabu Juban’s Kakuremino bar defined by street tree
Azabu Juban’s Kakuremino bar defined by street tree

this narrow Nishi Azabu Juban bar is defined by the curbside street tree

Lush sidewalk garden in Nishi Azabu Juban
Lush sidewalk garden in Nishi Azabu Juban

Most people would think there’s no room for a garden

Baby bitter melon in September typhoon
Baby bitter melon in September typhoon

A baby bitter melon in the rain, with its flower still attached

Elaborate sidewalk garden with plant labels
Elaborate sidewalk garden with plant labels

Nearly all of the pots rests on stools or low tables

Giant hedge frames modern house in Nakano
Giant hedge frames modern house in Nakano

Sometimes just 2 hedges = beautiful garden

Shinjuku Ward Office greening
Shinjuku Ward Office greening

sidewalk awning with minimal space and maintenance, impacts thousands coming to ward office

Balcony garden update
Balcony garden update

It’s amazing what you can fit in a sunny narrow space.

Curbside Assemblage with High Hanging Pots
Curbside Assemblage with High Hanging Pots

High hanging pots in wire

Roof Garden in Waseda
Roof Garden in Waseda

I needed a telescope to get a REALLY good look, which would have felt a bit like being a garden stalker….

Rose Bush Takes Over House
Rose Bush Takes Over House

The inside must be filled with delicious scent of the roses and feel miles away from the city life just outside the door.

Growing Up in Meguro-ku
Growing Up in Meguro-ku

Creeping greens in Yutenji

Tiny Paradise in Meguro-ku
Tiny Paradise in Meguro-ku

Who needs a yard?!

Selfmade “Vertical Garden” in Shiba/Mita
Selfmade "Vertical Garden" in Shiba/Mita

Selfmade “vertical garden” courtesy of Jan Lindenberg

Small building in Shinjuku covered in vines
Small building in Shinjuku covered in vines

This small building in a Shinjuku commercial district is buried in vines

Dense and mature sidewalk garden in Chiyoda
Dense and mature sidewalk garden in Chiyoda

The planting is amazingly thick, creating a green wall between the sidewalk and the large boulevard. . .

More balcony-grown baby watermelon
More balcony-grown baby watermelon

I am surprised at the success of this vertical, balcony watermelon

Trackside Asagao Space
Trackside Asagao Space

Dead space along the railway tracks in productive and enjoyable use

Recent pictures 最近の写真
Recent pictures 最近の写真

These recent pictures documenting the progress of Tak Watanabe and daughter’s first green wall are amazing.

Sidewalk bitter melons in plastic buckets & twine
Sidewalk bitter melons in plastic buckets & twine

Bitter melon growing in plastic buckets with an elaborate plastic twine trellis supported by a tree branch

Small ledge for green curtain & laundry
Small ledge for green curtain & laundry

Another great example of multi-function outdoor spaces that are incredibly small

Beer Crate Tiered Garden
Beer Crate Tiered Garden

Upturned beer crates form the structure of this mid-scale tiered garden in a Yanaka driveway.

Summer-time morning glory
Summer-time morning glory

As their name implies, the flowers are most spectacular in the morning.

Simple Tiered Garden
Simple Tiered Garden

Sometimes objects just fit.

Growing eggplant and cucumber on high-rise balcony
Growing eggplant and cucumber on high-rise balcony

Cucumbers grow incredibly fast

Bitter melon green curtain growing on curbside
Bitter melon green curtain growing on curbside

It covers the window, and dwarfs in size the adjacent vending machine

2nd floor view. 二階の窓から
2nd floor view. 二階の窓から

A green curtain from the inside.

Apartment Entrance Garden + Grapes
Apartment Entrance Garden + Grapes

Grapes are a feature fruit in Tokyo, from the inner-city to the outer suburbs.

Up in the Air in Shibuya
Up in the Air in Shibuya

From my vantage point on the 5th floor of an Aoyama Dori office building I check on the progress of a number of rooftop gardens which are invisible from down below…..

Balcony overflows with bougainvillea and other plants
Balcony overflows with bougainvillea and other plants

This corner balcony must have 40 or even 100 plants. I wonder what it looks like from inside the apartment.

Preparing for Climbers
Preparing for Climbers

Laying the foundations for a summer green wall.

Rose-covered homeware shop in Nishi Ogikubo
Rose-covered homeware shop in Nishi Ogikubo

Flowers as exuberant storefront!

Kokubunji Hanging Garden
Kokubunji Hanging Garden

Ways to wire your hanging garden.

Balcony Green Curtain
Balcony Green Curtain

A simple twine structure connecting the railing with the laundry support attached to the balcony ceiling.

Lush Green Wall in Pots & Planters
Lush Green Wall in Pots & Planters

A very green wall constructed from planters and Pots

Clip-on Garden Shelf
Clip-on Garden Shelf

Adding a pot-plant garden with wire and wood.

Potplant Holder in Packing Twine
Potplant Holder in Packing Twine

Plastic twine creates space for extra hanging pot-plants.

Clever Hook-based Hanging Garden
Clever Hook-based Hanging Garden

A clever solution for creating a hanging garden along a breeze block wall without damaging/affecting the structure in any permanent way.

Heavy Duty Hanging Garden
Heavy Duty Hanging Garden

Large plastic laundry hook serves as support for a large hanging planter.

Maison Harajuku
Maison Harajuku

A single vine originates from the right side of the front of the building……..

Moss Covered Roofs and Walls
Moss Covered Roofs and Walls

Even mundane structures come alive when we let nature colonize our habitat.

Gorgeous Tree Garden in Sendaji
Gorgeous Tree Garden in Sendaji

So many people think that all they can plant are simple flower boxes, when vertical solutions can be so much more lush and interesting….