Build a Green Roof - National Gardening Week 2015

There is plenty to do during National Gardening Week 2015. But if you’re in search of a little inspiration, you've come to the right place.

Installing a green roof is a great way to help the environment and create an attractive feature in your garden. A green roof is essentially a roof covered in a layer of plants, an idea which is fast becoming more popular in Britain.

Although green roofs are spotted on larger buildings that require significant funding to maintain, it is in fact possible to create one in your own back garden, using your very own DIY skills.

Where could your Green Roof go?

  • Sheds
  • Garages
  • Porches
  • Bin shelters
  • Hen houses and rabbit hutches
  • Covered walkways
  • Tool stores
  • Most importantly, you need a flat or gently sloping roof. If this is your first time building a green roof, then start with a small area.

    Benefits of Installing a Green Roof

  • Insulation - keeping the inside cooler in summer and warmer during winter
  • Sound Insulation
  • Improves air quality – air-borne particles are absorbed
  • Reduces risk of flooding – absorbing rainwater and letting it drain away slowly
  • Weather protection – protecting the roof from UV light and frost. This will also prolong the life of the roofing felt
  • Increases biodiversity –providing a natural habitat that can provide food and shelter for wildlife
  • Natural aesthetics – blending buildings in to their natural surroundings
  • Building your Green Roof

    Before installing a green roof, It is extremely important that you choose a structure that is strong enough to take the additional weight. Another idea is to support the living roof on a wooden frame that overhangs the structure. This can then be supported by timber posts set in concrete.

    To hold everything in place, fix the edging around the roof. Along the bottom edge of the slope, leave a gap to let water run off.

    Prepare the under layers by placing a root-proof material on top of the roof. Then place a filter sheet over it and a moisture blanket on top of that to act as a reservoir.

    Put on growing material such as clay aggregate, crushed brick or limestone chippings mixed with organic material like well-rotted compost. Don’t use garden soil as it is too heavy for this type of application.

    Add plants that are drought tolerant and able to survive on a shallow layer of growing medium. Examples include Biting Stonecrop and English Stonecrop.

    Incorporate other elements into the design of your green roof such as logs, stones and gravel. This will provide an excellent habitat for mini beasts and other species of wildlife.

    So will you be building a green roof during National Gardening Week 2015? The official website has lots of great ideas for you to get stuck into so go ahead and enjoy!

    Related articles:

    National Gardening Week 2015

    How to Build a Compost Cafe

    Grow your own Edible Flowers


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