I gardened for 5 years on my roof in Brooklyn. I experimented a lot. As Margaret says- do not skimp on pot size! What I found to work the best for me: Blueberry bushes, sedums, herbs, heathers. Also it is very easy to keep a water garden; just fill one of those large tubs with water and a potted lily or other water plant. It takes a long time for that much water to evaporate, just make sure your roof can take the weight.
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Welcome! I’m Margaret Roach, a leading garden writer for 25 years—at ‘Martha Stewart Living,’ ‘Newsday,’ and in three books. I host a public-radio podcast; I also lecture, plus hold tours at my 2.3-acre Hudson Valley (NY) Zone 5B garden, and always say no to chemicals and yes to great plants.