Green and the City

“A city’s environment is shaped not only by people who have an important influence, but by everyone who lives and works there.”

-Robert Cowan

As a supporter and advocate for the environment, some people assume that my only desire is to live in a tiny house somewhere remote and live off the land, or build a home completely off the grid.  Don’t get me wrong, both ideas have crossed my mind, but I find I definitely crave city life and in my current status returning to southern Utah, I miss being in a city.  After living in Salt Lake City and Chicago temporarily, you’d think I would feel disdain for urban life and wish I could escape, but in reality it is just the opposite.  I’m still undecided as to whether or not I want to reside in a city or escape to the country, but one thing remains true, it is possible to find green in a city, and I’m not referring to money.  Living sustainably, respecting the environment and finding greenery in a city are absolutely possible.  How?  To see what I mean, take a look at a collection of my photos from visits to cities that know how to get their green on.

Seattle, Washington, United States

Ballard Locks Seattle

Ballard Locks Seattle 3

Ballard Locks Seattle 2

Portland, Oregon, United States

Multnomah Falls Portland

Multnomah Falls

Portland Japanese Gardens 2

Portland Japanese Garden

Portland Japanese Gardens 3

Portland Japanese Gardens

Lan Su Chinese Garden Portland 2

Lan Su Chinese Garden

Lan Su Chinese Garden Portland

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Stanley Park Vancouver 2

Stanley Park

Stanley Park Vancouver 3

Stanley Park Vancouver

Chicago, Illinois, United States

Chicago Botanic Gardens 2

Chicago Botanic Gardens

Chicago Botanic Gardens

Garfield Park Conservatory Chicago 2

Garfield Park Conservatory

Garfield Park Conservatory Chicago

Lincoln Park Conservatory Chicago 2

Lincoln Park Conservatory

Lincoln Park Conservatory Chicago 3

Lincoln Park Conservatory Chicago

If large cities such as these can find the value of creating and preserving patches of greenery, why hasn’t the rest of the world followed suit?  It may take time for technology to catch up with the needs of sustainability, but doing our best to take care of our world does not require waiting.  If there’s plenty of gardens and parks to enjoy, then we as citizens can do our part to take actions towards preserving these pieces of scenery.  What can be done?  We can start by reducing our plastic use and waste, growing our own food whether it’s herbs on the counter or a garden within a community, thinking about how much we consume before we buy something we don’t need and reminding our politicians to support sustainable tactics.  There’s plenty more to be done, but as I’ve seen, we can always do more as a community than alone in our apartment buildings.

“Green is the prime color of the world, and that from which its loveliness arises.”

-Pedro Calderon de la Barca

This post is a part of Little Things Thursday hosted by Little by LittleTravel Photo Thursday hosted by Budget Travelers SandboxPhoto Friday hosted by Pierced WonderingsWeekend Wanderlust hosted by A Brit and A Southerner, One Modern Couple, Eat Work Travel, A Southern Gypsy and Justin Plus LaurenWeekend Travel Inspiration hosted by Reflections Enroute, The Crowded Planet, Contented Traveller, Albom Adventures, Safari 254, FamiliesGo!, and Malaysian Meanders, Sweet Inspiration hosted by Boondocks BlogThe Weekly Postcard hosted by Travel Notes & Beyond Outdoor Wednesday hosted by a Southern Daydreamer and Nature Notes hosted by Rambling Woods.

Budget Travelers Sandbox
Pierced Wonderings
Weekend Wanderlust 2
Travel Notes & Beyond
Outdoor Wednesday


  1. kim

    I love the city, but I love them more with green spaces.

    • brooklyntvlasich

      I completely agree with you! Green spaces make all the difference in urban living.

  2. Grace

    Gorgeous photos! Our planet is truly beautiful, and I hope prioritizing its health and sustainability will continue to gain in popularity.

    • brooklyntvlasich

      I hope sustainability will be a priority too and not just a passing trend or something only a few care about.

  3. Sophie's World (@SophieR)

    Wow, I didn’t know Chicago had such gorgeous spots. I should really take a closer look 🙂

    • brooklyntvlasich

      I hope you get the chance to. Chicago had so many great parks, gardens and conservatories! I miss it.

  4. Juergen |

    I love your photos. Although all depict forms of “man-made earth” they show that many of us care for nature and have a strong emotional response to its beauty.

    • brooklyntvlasich

      Thank you Juergen! Yes, the are man-made, but as you mentioned they show us how much we need some kind of nature in a city.

  5. Rachel Heller

    What lovely photos! It seems to me that parks and gardens in cities are absolutely vital to city dwellers’ well-being. Partly for the ‘green lung’ function they fulfill, and partly for the opportunity they provide to be in ‘nature’.

    • brooklyntvlasich

      I completely agree with you Rachel. Getting out to a park or a garden in a city is essential to feel refreshed!

  6. Mary-The Boondocks Blog

    Brooke I have found that at different times in my life I have craved different areas. When I was young and had no kids I lived in New York and revelled in it. But now that I’m older I would be much happier living in the country. So I believe we can have it all at different times in our lives as long as we recognize that we grow and change as people. I also host a l ink party and would be so honoredif you would link up this post with these gorgeous photos. It’s called Sweet Inspiration and runs from Friday to Tuesday.

    • brooklyntvlasich

      I definitely agree with you, at different times of my life I’ve wanted different living environments. Thanks for the wonderful compliments on my photos, I look forward to joining your link party!

      • Mary-The Boondocks Blog

        Brooke youare being featured at our next Sweet Inspiration Link Party. It will go live on Friday. Congratulations.

        • brooklyntvlasich

          Thanks Mary! Looking forward to Friday’s post and joining the Link Party again with some new posts.

  7. mariamichelle117

    I grew up in a one stoplight town so cities are out of my comfort zone, but I do enjoy visiting them occasionally. I was in Barcelona in January and found a beautiful garden when I got lost. I just sat down and enjoyed it for a couple of hours. I really enjoyed seeing the green color instead of concrete. I absolutely love all of your photos and it makes me want to visit these gardens!

    • brooklyntvlasich

      Getting lost is often the best way to find something great in a city, especially in Barcelona! 🙂

  8. Thank you for joining #TheWeeklyPostcard and linking up this post encouraging sustainability and preservation of our environment. Coming from a city with one of the largest parks in the world (yes larger than New York’s Central park) I encourage parks and gardens be maintained and preserved for all to enjoy.

    • brooklyntvlasich

      Always a pleasure to be a part of the #TheWeeklyPostcard, and I couldn’t agree more with you about preserving local parks and gardens!

  9. galanda23

    I love green spaces and nature but like you, I can’t stay away from big cities for too long. I was born and raised in one, so there is always going to be a feeling of ” being home” when I visit one. However, I can’t stay away from nature for too long either, so I find myself moving between the two as often as I can. Gorgeous photos, Brooke!

    • brooklyntvlasich

      Thanks! I feel exactly as you do about big cities and being in nature, I need both. 😉

  10. danielwalldammit

    So much green! I live in white, so it’s particularly cool to see. The tiered trees in the landscape photo are just great!

  11. corinnevail

    Yes, yes, yes…parks, greenery, I love it. I am not a big city girl anyway, so I try to hit as much green as I can when I’m in one.

    • brooklyntvlasich

      I love big cities, but like you I love to find as much greenery as I can. Excited to find another travel blogger who values the same thing!


    I love seeing green cities! We definitely need them! Your photos are gorgeous!

    • brooklyntvlasich

      Thank you! And I completely agree with you about more green cities! 🙂

  13. Pili Gomez

    Pretty photos and great thought about what we can do to help the environment. I really think we need to get more people into consciousness and ask for more green places in the cities. I was born and raised in Barcelona and I remember the amount of gardens and green places it has despite it is a really big city.
    Thanks for sharing with us at Sweet Inspiration, have a wonderful week!

    • brooklyntvlasich

      Thanks Pili! I’m glad I could inspire you to think about the environment and sustainability in our cities.

  14. ladyfi

    A gorgeous shot.

  15. Rambling Woods

    Welcome to Nature Notes Brooke..I am happy to meet you here in blogland. I took a look around as I do with all new blogs and I love the inspiration and philosophy of your blog. You come from a unique perspective and I was very interested reading. Yes, green spaces and chemical free gardens are so necessary and this is a lovely series of photos…Michelle

    • brooklyntvlasich

      Thanks Michelle. I’m so excited you enjoy my blog philosophy and enjoy my thoughts behind a green lifestyle! Always fun to join more link parties!

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