By daveynin from United States (Largest Vertical Garden in North America) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
As a precious architectural approach that supports sustainable design, living walls and rooftop gardens are not just excellent choice for green house arrangement, but a great ecological contribution and energy efficient venture. Consisted of lush vegetation layer grown on the top of the building, green roofs are perfect natural insulator. Their depth, dimensions and type can vary from subtle green surfaces to impressive roof garden spaces. Vertically planted greenery on inside or outside walls is another popular green architectural solution
, equally used on public buildings, huge constructions and private homes. Installation of living walls and green roofs in houses abound with benefits for house owners and entire surrounding:
Environmental impact of green walls and roof gardens
While installing outside green facade brings improved house aesthetics and pleasant wall landscaping, its affection on wider environment is not just positive, but extremely valuable. Apart from creating precious onsite cooling, vegetative wall and roof, the green designs contribute to the production and spreading of cool air throughout entire urban area, preventing extreme heat waves. Thick exterior wall greenery and roof gardens, thanks to the photosynthesis process, release tremendous amounts of oxygen while at the same time absorb harmful air components, enriching the environment with continuous sources of fresh air. Living walls as well as green roofs stand out as extraordinary heat insulation, meaning that its implementation reduces energy utilization and polluting outlets. Green roofs are particularly beneficial for the minimization of stormwater runoff, rainwater purification and lowering the pressure on drainage systems. In addition, these benefits help save the environment from water waste and improves overall water quality. Lush roof vegetation is secure shelter for dozens of insects and birds, whose existence is particularly jeopardized in urban parts, so there is a huge positive influence on biodiversity preservation.
By 20080708_Chicago_City_Hall_Green_Roof.JPG: TonyTheTiger derivative work: — raeky (talk | edits) (20080708_Chicago_City_Hall_Green_Roof.JPG) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0) or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html)], via Wikimedia Commons
Houses covered with living walls and green roofs stand out for its distinguished attractiveness which refreshes not only backyard area, but the appearance of entire neighbourhood and community. Apart from impressive outside scenery, both green walls and massive rooftop gardens are excellent noise neutralisers, what contributes to common public comfort and serenity. Walls carrying the most stable green wall system
can serve as powerful stopper of squall and rain drifts, diminishing an opportunity of great blizzard hits. Outside house vegetation empowers local fauna and creates natural balance within urban regions, saves local natural sources, but also protects community from floods and downsizes the quantity of sewage water. In the end, green walls and roofs improve local air quality and better the public health.
The advantages for home owners
By Downtowngal (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons
Private houses covered with vegetative walls and roofs are provided with excellent thermo and cooling insulation what results in less energy spent for heating and air-conditioning, so home-owners are achieving minimization of their household expenses. While outside green walls offer perfect backyard cooling and oxygen supply, house owners also decide for improving indoor air with wall greenery. Both green walls and rooftop gardens provide households with noise and construction protection, but also with possibility of creating stormwater based irrigation systems. That reduces overall water consumption, saves resources and minimizes the amount of utility costs. Although green roofs are pretty simple to install, it’s recommendable to always work with a licensed roofing contractor to make sure your roof can withstand the added weight of a green roof since they are much heavier when wet than asphalt shingles. Above all mentioned benefits, vegetative walls and roofs improve overall life quality and provide incomparably healthier living environment.