We envision a resilient world dependent on the thoughtful cultivation of plants

Back to Nature

Articles: Back to Nature

The prolific green roofs of Switzerland’s major cities meld even their most industrial edges with the surrounding landscape. Photo: Jeff Joslin

If the phrase “green roof technology” calls to mind ice cube-like trays sandwiched between layers of plastic sheeting and synthetic fibrous mats topped with highly engineered  growing medium, and a pre-grown sedum carpet you’re not alone. This is an apt description of most American green roofs and the economic backbone  of the contemporary green roof industry. So this past summer when several Bay Area living architecture specialists were invited to travel and learn about green roof planting and policy in Switzerland, we thought we knew what to expect.

Instead, we were introduced to the polar opposite of what we had anticipated. There were no systems, no plastic trays, no manufactured “moisture retention layers,” or synthetic filter fabrics. The Swiss green roofs that we toured employed a simple layering of straw, or China reed (Miscanthus sinensis), topped with native soil from the site (sometimes mixed with lava rock or gravel), and planted with a wildflower seed...

READ THE WHOLE STORY


Join now to access new headline articles, archives back to 1977, and so much more.

Enjoy this article for FREE:

Articles: Calochortophilia: A Californian’s Love Affair with a Genus by Katherine Renz

If you are already a member, please log in using the form below.

Share:

Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn

Social Media

Garden Futurist Podcast

Most Popular

Videos

Topics

Related Posts

Powered By MemberPress WooCommerce Plus Integration

Your free newsletter starts here!

Don’t want to see this pop-up? Members, log-in here.

Why do we ask for your zip code?

We do our best to make our educational content relevant for where you garden.

Why do we ask for your zip code?

We do our best to make our educational content relevant for where you garden.

The information you provide to Pacific Horticulture is NEVER sold, shared, or rented to others.

Pacific Horticulture generally sends only two newsletters per Month.