2017 Delivers Beautiful, Sustainable Green Roofing Ideas

Green roofing or living roofing has become more popular as best practices, automation, and simple trial and error wraps up 2017. From flat fields with well-manicured lawns to lush rooftop gardens, green roofing techniques have taken an even more firm root on architecture across the world. To understand green roofing and how recent developments have changed the building culture, here are a few horticultural rooftop details.

What Is Green Roofing...And Why?

Green roofing is a large category that covers many different approaches for growing vegetation on your roof--or as your roof. A step up from the thatched-roof cottages of civilizations past, these rooftop designs use soil (or soil substitutes) and vegetation to create a field over your head.

There are multiple ways to approach green roofing. The most basic type is a boxed garden design that contains soil and your vegetation of choice, while other options are more aggressive in growing sod (slabs of soil-clenched grass, such as turf) as its own free-standing roof material.

Among many reasons to choose green housing, sustainability and individuality are at the top. Green roofing answers a question that nags many homes: how can rainwater be managed more cleanly and efficiently? Gutters/eaves troughs or rain chains are used to guide water, but you still have to deal with the runoff and mixed building materials that leak and leach over time.

Think about shingles, shakes, or other roofing materials. Those materials are made of rocky substances, binding agents, and coloring agents that can mix in with water to become--if not completely toxic--stagnant and stunting to the ground below. Along with the force of rainwater dripping from the roof and eroding the soil below, roofing can sometimes become as bad as greywater when not managed properly.

Green roofing answers this problem by being just like a cliff, hill, or ledge in nature. A lot of the rain is soaked into the soil, and a great deal of the soil is held together by vegetation. What leaks to the ground is filtered by soil, and the vegetation benefits from direct sunlight with first taste of the rain.

Advancements In Green Roofing

One notable boost in green roofing comes from Amsterdam, as rooftop garden systems emerge from green roofing expert Joris Voeten. This engineer developed a garden surface for rooftops that can be used for relaxation, meetings, or even the yard of a business.

Past experiments in modern green roofing teetered precariously around sturdy supports and exact weight limits that were easy to reach by accident. The rooftop garden system designs the roof like a floor itself, but with a detailed set of measurements designed around much higher rooftop load. Along with sensors to monitor water level and specific drainage patterns, the system is design to be maintained and observed from an engineering standpoint while being a practical roof and a usable space.

In the United States, green roofing labs have been trialing the past few years of green roofing theory with a polished, live testing set of improvements. The living laboratory at the Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, New Jersey uses a set of bioretention planters that include soil sensors, water cycling downspouts, and different growth mediums to see what works.

These labs can show future homeowners, business leaders, and investors how the technology not only works, but can produce results beyond reducing environment impact. Reducing was the story of the world in the 1990's and earlier; today's world changers want to harness the repairs while boosting sustainable growth. Contact a team of roofing contractors, such as from Mid-Miami Roofing, Inc., to learn more about green roofing for your building.