Terrace (container) gardening in downtown Toronto


                    The terrace in March of 2011

 This is the tenth year that we have container-gardened on our terrace in downtown Toronto. We have found that the larger the container, the more success we have in wintering plants, as it reduces the alternate freezing and thawing that kills perennial flowers, bushes and evergreens. The Alberta spruce are double-potted. This entails planting them in a large pot, and then inserting the pot into a second (larger) pot. The air trapped between the pots insulates the inner pot and helps prevent the soil in it from thawing on mild winter days.

        The Terrace in the Summer of 2011


The clematis were late this year, blooming in early June. These plants have survived four winters, and continue to expand. They are in containers that measure 2 1/2’ by 2 1/2 feet, and about 15 inches deep. As of August 1st, they are still blooming.

lilacs, June 2011 lilacs

The lilac bushes remain healthy after eight successive winters. They are in a square container 18” by 18” and 14” deep.


The west side of the terrace at the end of the first week of July. The clematis are on the divider wall, and the lilacs, which are no longer in bloom, are on the upper left of the picture. On the table is portulaca, in a herb pot with three tiers.


East side of the terrace, with ivy on the wall and a chokeberry bush to the right of the CN Tower. The terrace totals 220 square feet, and has an automatic watering system that cost in total about $150. It remains outside all winter, and is working well after nine years.


       begonias and scaevola (purple flowers in foreground) in bloom

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                Night view of downtown Toronto from the terrace.

To view the Home Page for this blog: https://tayloronhistory.wordpress.com/

To explore more memories of Toronto’s past:


Books by the author:

Toronto’s Theatres and the Golden Age of the Silver Screen,” explores 50 of Toronto’s old theatres and contains over 80 archival photographs of the facades, marquees and interiors of the theatres. It relates anecdotes and stories by the author and others who experienced these grand old movie houses.  


   To place an order for this book, published by History Press:


Book also available in most book stores such as Chapter/Indigo, the Bell Lightbox and AGO Book Shop. It can also be ordered by phoning University of Toronto Press, Distribution: 416-667-7791 (ISBN 978.1.62619.450.2)


Another book on theatres, published by Dundurn Press, is entitled, “Toronto’s Movie Theatres of Yesteryear—Brought Back to Thrill You Again.” It explores 81 theatres and contains over 125 archival photographs, with interesting anecdotes about these grand old theatres and their fascinating histories. Note: an article on this book was published in Toronto Life Magazine, October 2016 issue.

For a link to the article published by Toronto Life Magazine: torontolife.com/…/photos-old-cinemas-dougtaylortoronto-local-movie-theatres-of-y…

The book is available at local book stores throughout Toronto or for a link to order this book: https://www.dundurn.com/books/Torontos-Local-Movie-Theatres-Yesteryear

                        Toronto: Then and Now®

Another publication, “Toronto Then and Now,” published by Pavilion Press (London, England) explores 75 of the city’s heritage sites. It contains archival and modern photos that allow readers to compare scenes and discover how they have changed over the decades. 

Note: a review of this book was published in Spacing Magazine, October 2016. For a link to this review:


For further information on ordering this book, follow the link to Amazon.com  here  or contact the publisher directly by the link below:


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