Urban Omnibus: Seeking a Future New York in Weeds

Timon McPhearson’s interview with David Seiter is now on Urban Omnibus “Seeking a Future New York in Weeds” !


“Five years ago, landscape architect David Seiter wrote an essay for this publication explaining his interest in New York City’s weeds. Seiter’s project, “Profiles of Spontaneous Urban Plants,” was conceived as an effort to “to recognize their importance as a sort of renegade green infrastructure, thriving in places no native plant would grow and providing substantive ecological benefits.”

Earlier this year, Seiter, who is the design director and founding principal of Brooklyn’s Future Green Studio, published SUP: Weeds in NYC. Part guide, part coffee table book, SUP — which stands for “spontaneous urban plants” — is an enthralling survey of the plants we try to kill, when we notice them at all. (It has a companion website, too, that maps weeds in the city.)

This month, ecologist Timon McPhearson — who is the director of the Urban Ecology Lab at The New School, and wrote the foreword for SUP — sat down with Seiter to talk about the beauty and the performative value of the lowly weed, and how the propagation of spontaneous urban plants may shape the future city. New York has almost twice as much sidewalk space as park space. What if the former were as green as the latter?”

– posted by Henry Graber from UO.