What goes better than plants and green building? Well, nothing, really. So how about building a green roof on that potting shed, creating a miniature garden?
Having a green roof does not mean you’ll have additional square footage to spread perennials into. Some perennials, maybe, but this isn’t about having a roof top garden. There are a multitude of benefits and purposes to building a green roof, from reduced heating and cooling costs, to improving air quality and extending the life of your roof.
With a potting shed roof, it’s all about taking care of our planet while providing beauty and function.
Create a Green Roof in Five Steps
Step 1) You’ll need a waterproof membrane to protect the shed’s interior. This can be plastic, rubber, asphalt or any other product that will repel the water. Check out basement water-proofing products and look for something eco-friendly, if possible.
Step 2) Next comes the root barrier. This is to make sure the thirsty and strong roots of your plants don’t come busting through the membrane and damage the structure of the roof. If your waterproof membrane will hold back the roots, skip this step.
Step 3) Drainage is essential. This can be created easily with a layer of pea gravel or small stones covered by a filter cloth. Landscape fabric is used to retain the soil while still allowing the roots to penetrate through to the gravel.
Step 4) Now for the soil. It’s best to use a sandy, light, well drained soil and choose plants that will thrive in that environment. Crushed clay mixed with organics and clean top soil will also work. Think light weight with enough nutrients to keep your plants well fed.
Step 5) Planting is the fun part. You should choose low care, hardy plants that will survive in full sun and are zone friendly for your climate. Sedums are extremely popular and often change color in the fall to present a gorgeous display. Plain old sod in another good choice. Ask at the garden center to get their recommendations for your specific area.
You can also add drip irrigation for easy care, but a fine spray with the hose will also work. Check the interior framing and span inside your shed to make sure it can hold the increased weight of a green roof. Add reinforcements (ahead of time) if necessary.
Now you can enjoy the beautiful sight of a living, breathing roof on your potting shed. Truly green in every way.
Photo courtesy of Flickr/er.we