In our first airport gardens post, we talked about the best airport gardens internationally. This time we’re packing our bags and taking the list a little closer to home. From New York to Vancouver, you’ll be able to relax and unwind in a variety of gardens, green spaces and rooftop patios – and we think it’s about thyme. Enjoy!  

The top 5 airport gardens in North America:

Vancouver International Airport – The Green Wall and Chester Johnson Park

YVR is home to the largest green wall in all of North America, measuring 17 metres high and 11 metres wide! The wall is made up of 27,391 individual plants and it connects the airport station to Chester Johnson Park – the park filling up the space between the parking lot and the international terminal.

You’ll find everything you’d expect to on the west coast of Beautiful British Columbia at Chester Johnson Park: waterfalls, evergreens, totem poles and conifers to name a few. There are plenty of shaded corners and benches to explore and settle down on for a peaceful moment before your flight.

Vancouver International Airport, green wall airport garden
PHOTO: Vancouver Airport

Chicago, O’Hare International Airport – Aeroponic Urban Garden

Chicago O’Hare was the first airport in the world to grow an aeroponic garden! But what exactly is that? An ‘aeroponic garden’ means growing plants without soil – a nutrient filled mist is sprayed onto their roots during regular watering cycles and voila!, you have a garden that uses vertical space and no dirt. The plants and herbs are suspended on 27 towers that have over 1,100 planting spots!

The garden is visible from the dining (perhaps you’re eating some of the herbs grown right before your eyes?) and lounging areas in the airport. The aeroponic garden grows a whole variety of plants including basil, cilantro, dill, parsley and many of the restaurants at Chicago airport use herbs directly from the garden! Some places where you can try greens from the aeroponic garden are Tortas Frontera, Wicker Park Sushi, Wolfgang Puck and Tuscany Cafe.

Chicago O'Hare Airport aeroponic gardens
PHOTO: Green Aquaponics

See Also: Airport Therapy Dogs

San Francisco International Airport – The Garden Patio

This garden patio was created as part of a plan to improve SFO employee’s time at work – but it ended up being an amazing spot for passengers to hang out too! The garden features plants that can survive a drought (like cactus, succulents and many other Californian and Australian native plants) and is set up with tables and chairs to enjoy a relaxing time in the sun. It’s open to the public 24/7 just outside the arrivals level at Terminal 1.

San Francisco Airport gardens
PHOTO: Linda Lamb Peters

John F. Kennedy International Airport – Rooftop Garden

With the new rooftop garden at JFK Airport, you can grab a breath of fresh air (and some vitamin D) before your flight, take your dog for a walk or just use this opportunity to stretch your legs in a green setting. The garden is located on the rooftop of Terminal 5 and it’s open to everyone to use. There’s plenty of space for both you, your pets and your kids with a 400-square-foot children’s play area and a dog walking area (plus a spot for them to do their business). The best part about this garden? The view of the Manhattan skyline!

JFK rooftop airport park
PHOTO: Business Insider

Edmonton International Airport – The Living Wall

Edmonton Airport doesn’t boast a full garden but what they do have is an incredible “living wall” created by Green Over Grey artist Mike Weinmaster. The wall is a gigantic 1,420 square feet and has approximately 8,000 individual plants. There are 32 unique species of plants that make up the wall, including an Octopus Tree, a Swiss Cheese Plant and a Staghorn Fern, just to name a few. You can check out the wall in the Canada Arrivals Hall.

Fun fact about the living wall: “The thousands of plants add tons of oxygen to the terminal each year as well as absorb toxic indoor air pollutants such as carbon dioxide, benzene, and volatile organic compounds.”

Edmonton Airport living wall
PHOTO: Edmonton Airport
Melina Morry

Melina has a knack for travel style, a love for leopards and is always keen to pack a suitcase and fly to a different part of the world.

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