Green Walls: Growing Up

July 22, 2014

By now green roofs have become a calling card for architects anxious to undertake eco-initiatives (and be seen to undertake eco-initiatives). Natural vegetation can improve insulation and help lower air temperature while soothing stress levels for urbanites overlooking a canopy of concrete.

So it's little surprise that this commercial innovation is making inroads into the residential market. Not so where that greenery is growing. While a green roof comes with a shopping list of logistical issues (like permits), a wall of the stuff gives some of the same positive vibes without the ever-present fear of leaks. "We're seeing a 30 percent increase in requests each year, especially each spring," says Patrick Poiraud of Green Over Grey, a firm that specializes in vertical green landscapes.

All you need for the wall version is a water source, drain, and plug-and some vision. To help with the latter, you can enroll this fall in BCIT's new Living Wall course, the first in Canada

Tropical plants are the order of the day for indoor green walls. you can use indoor edibles, too. Imagine relaxing beside a wall of pineapples, ginger, coffee, or banana plants. Talk about armchair travelling.

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