Vertical gardens, also called green walls or plant walls, are a trend in gardening. They have been used for years to integrate green spaces in urban areas, among other uses.
The idea is to dress the walls with plants vertically and they are used both in exteriors and in interiors that are in contact with the air. They often have an integrated watering system.
Vertical gardens and the environment
In addition to aesthetically improving building facades, they are also beneficial to the environment. This is because they contribute to improving the urban microclimate, improving the quality of life of the city/town. They also help to reduce temperature (they act as insulation, both thermal and acoustic) and, contrary to what it may seem, they do not attract insects. Furthermore, they help to purify the air, among many other benefits.
The most suitable plants for vertical gardens
The most commonly used plants for these uses are vines, because of their rapid growth and their tendency to climb and become entangled in any surface. These are bougainvillea, jasmine, among many others.
But they are not the only plants used in vertical gardens. In fact, there are no plants that are suitable or unsuitable for this type of garden, as what you have to take into account are the factors that accompany the plant wall. The characteristics that should be assessed when choosing plants are the location of the wall (whether it is indoors or outdoors) or the hours of sun and/or shade that they touch.
Origin and history
Many sources place the origin of the vertical gardens -as we know them now- at the end of the 1980s, by the hand of the French architect and botanist, Patrick Blanc. Although their history goes back further, as Wikipedia tells us, which refers to the Hanging Gardens of Babylon as the first example of this concept.
But as we mentioned at the beginning, the greatest promoter of the current plant wall movement was Blanc, together with Stanley Hart White. He was not the inventor per se who extended the trend internationally, building green walls in cities such as Paris, Berlin, New York, Honk Kong, among other places in the world.
He was also the one who created the first vertical garden in Spain, in 2007, in the headquarters of CaixaForum Madrid located in the former Central Eléctrica del Mediodía, built with 18,000 plants of 250 different species.
Currently, the largest vertical garden in the world is in Colombia (Santalaia building) and occupies more than 3,100 square metres and has 115,000 plants.
The main characteristics of vertical gardens are the benefits they provide, both in terms of the environment (as we have already mentioned) and in terms of functionality. We must take into account the great visual impact they provide to society. This can help to make people aware of the benefits of green spaces, the preservation of the environment, etc.
In addition, for our vertical garden to be a success, we have to take into account certain characteristics, such as the type of substrate we use, the plants we choose, or other factors we have mentioned previously.
If you have read this article and you are thinking that a vertical garden is the most suitable option to dress up your home and/or company, do not hesitate to contact us and ask for information. In Punt Verd we are specialized in the design, construction and maintenance of vertical gardens.
- On 19 de May de 2020
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