Green is good.
It is really that simple when it comes to flora in the urban environment. The vision of landscape in the streetscape is frequently limited to expected concepts of planting street trees and potted plants.
However, we contend that creative placement of plant material is absolutely necessary in any downtown. Vacant spaces, excessively wide sidewalks, alleys, parking lots, and plazas are all obvious (though not always exploited) locations to add plants. Less obvious locations are facades, roof tops, light poles, or parking meters.
If you are familiar with the City of York, you likely know that public art installations have become the location for plants in that community. York has turned the notion of potted plants into a literal and figurative work of art. The sculptures that adorn intersections in York exhibit a steampunk vibe with pipes, gears, and vessels welded into unique forms. Within each vessel are installations of landscape materials that bring green to the pedestrian spaces in unexpected ways.
Yes, green is good. And creative placement of green can make it even better.
(to see these planters in their glory, visit http://salvagingcreativity.com/outdoor/)