Bryant Park is not your everyday city park. At its center is a meticulously groomed lawn of one acre. Bordering the lawn are 600 linear feet of perennial planting beds with 7,000 square feet of planting area. Other planting beds include those on the 40th Street, Sixth Avenue and the Fifth Avenue perimeters, containing another 10,000 square feet of seasonal planting and shrubbery. Throughout the year, discover 20 varieties of perennials, 13 varieties of shrubs, and over 50 varieties of seasonal annuals and spring bulbs. On the northern and southern sides of the park you’ll walk through a gorgeous promenade formed by the allées of London Plane trees. This is one of the most dramatic aspects of the park and contributes to the formal European design and feel. Click on the slideshow below to view all aspects of the park.
Landscape Architecture & Planning
The grounds are maintained and planned with great attention to detail and present a private, estate- like feel. Any landscape is always in a process of change and evolution, and Bryant Park is no exception. During the past 30 years the grounds have continued to transform to create a more satisfying experience for park visitors, and also to accommodate the changing patterns of use. Over 10,000 seasonal summer annuals and 17,000 spring bulbs are planted each year, and new plants are introduced and tested every year.
The Horticulture Department has implemented many key design changes with plant material, pathways and other landscape elements to ensure that the park is a welcoming and beautiful refuge all year long. A custom gravel mixture is used on the paths, and there are over 200 planters and urns including five different types of architectural styles. The lawn is replaced every year after the winter ice rink. Click on the slideshow to view the harmonious relationships between the landscape and architectural elements, and to see how the landscape changes throughout the seasons.
The most defining and important planting in the park is the monoculture of our hundreds of London Plane Trees (Plantanus acerifolia), situated in allées on the outer perimeters and planted over 30 years ago. The close planting of the trees encouraged the trunks to grow thin and tall as they reached for the sun. The linear pattern and unusual bark of the tree trunks make a dramatic architectural statement. The formal parterre design also incorporates alternating beds of English Ivy (hedera helix) and crushed gravel under the trees.
Although new plants are introduced and tested every year at the park, old favorites and successful plants always make their way back into the displays each season. Click on the slideshow below to view a selection of signature plants of Bryant Park.