With advances in design, waterproofing and drainage, roof gardens also called ‘green roofs’, are used for many reasons including :
- A simple space saving idea.
- A decorative or architectural feature.
- A means of temperature control and insulation
They are actually nothing new in many ways, roof gardens have been popular in many forms for centuries, many early roof gardens were built by using pots and other traditional gardening methods.
Modern roof gardens are different thing all together, designed using waterproof lining or membrane and various hydroponics growing mediums that are lighter in weight than traditional materials.
Roof garden design and construction methods vary greatly, some consist of a layered system that would typically include, a waterproof membrane, a water holding layer, a drainage layer and a planting layer.
Other systems are based more on hydroponic principles and consist of a lightweight soil-less hydroponic material in planter bags.
Can you make a DIY roof garden ?
On a small scale yes you can make own roof garden, especially easy on a small shed with a gently sloping roof.
You will still need a waterproof membrane and you will need to check that the roof will hold the extra weight, however it can easily be done.
Plants species used for a roof garden vary greatly depending on construction methods and purpose of the roof garden.
Grass can be used to cover large areas and ‘connect’ a roof to the ground. Low maintenance plants such as sedum’s are popular.
Roof gardens may also be ‘productive gardens’ growing herbs and vegetables.