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growing a green wall

June 30, 2008

zora naki

Green walls are glorious. Take the technology for green roofs and put it somewhere everyone can enjoy it. Regardless of any environmental benefits that may result, just think about how great it would be to coat your entire house with succulents!

The designer that everyone seems to watch is Patrick Blanc – read an interview with him here. He does these fabulous wall sculptures with plants. A steel frame is mounted onto the face of the building (leaving a gap between the frame and the wall), PVC sheets are attached and then felt is used as a rooting medium for the plants. His soiless system uses hydroponics (water with nutrients) to irrigate and sustain plant life.

Most green walls use some type of grid planter system using a frame, cells and irrigation channels. If soil is used as a potting medium, the cells are generally 2 – 4 inches deep and a lightweight moisture-retaining mixture is used. The home gardener can order cells that are slanted, to help keep the potting mixture in the wall.

There are lots of great examples of commercial applications – particularly in Asia and Europe, where green walls are used for company logos. With careful plant selection and planning, the walls can thrive most places – indoor and out.

It doesn’t have to be a full wall either – some designs use green panels like architectural punctuation. Here’s a recent article in Met Home about a garden wall installation.

Interior installations look like art. I wonder if it would give your living room that steamy conservatory smell?

People who sell supplies and install green walls:

G-Sky (Canada)
Alive Structures
Elt Living Walls (USA)
A Green Roof (USA)
Green Roof Plants (USA)
Green Wall Australia (Australia)
Green Fortune (Sweden)
Indoor Landscaping (Germany)

here is another post on more wall gardens.

And finally, yesterday’s (horizontally grown) harvest:


Post a comment
  1. July 2, 2008

    Green walls are very cool.
    I completed the tag thingy 🙂

  2. john #
    July 5, 2008

    green walls…so many possibilites!!!!

  3. July 9, 2008

    very cool and inspiring but, unfortunately, I don’t see how much application it would have in most of Canada, I live in Northern BC, as it is frozen and covered in snow for a good 7 months each year.

  4. July 11, 2008

    i know 😦 i guess you would have to look at either indoor panels or something evergreen and very, very short…

  5. October 14, 2008

    Check out how Patrick Blanc’s vertical garden was made in Melbourne Central:

  6. maria trevinyo #
    January 2, 2009

    Im very interested in learn how to built a green wall system. please let me know if you have a catalog with the elements do I need to buy in order to built it.
    Also I want to know if I can take some classes on line.
    Waiting for your comments

    Hi Maria – Try some of the links in the post for more information on buying/building a green wall.

  7. martin stohl #
    January 21, 2009

    hey there everybody. we are in a process of designing a shopping mall here in central europe where we woud like to experiment a bit with a green wall system. i am doing a research of available systems & manufacturers out there (especially those here within the E.U.). any suggestions anyone?

  8. February 5, 2009

    In response to Martin Stohl, contact me at your leisure. Our firm works with the ELT modular system, and would recommend it strongly. It is a very smart design; lightweight, recycled, modular & interchangeable, relatively inexpensive, and easy to incorporate into your architectural elements, especially where LEED is a goal. Urban gardening is the future, but you’ll have at least 10-20 years of wow factor before the masses tune into this new world where ecology & architecture find full synergy.

  9. RaiulBaztepo #
    March 28, 2009

    Very Interesting post! Thank you for such interesting resource!
    PS: Sorry for my bad english, I’v just started to learn this language 😉
    See you!
    Your, Raiul Baztepo

  10. reza #
    September 25, 2009


    I am Mse student Floriculture & Landscape in I.A.R.I in new delhi i need more information about plant’s variety that use in green wall (vertical wall) please guide me .

    thank u .

  11. November 16, 2009

    Man.. it’s all about the walls that have plants that have fully grown in. The ones where you can see the panel outlines just don’t work. The ones where the walls are full of grown plants look amazing!

  12. November 19, 2009

    I have put together some Vertical Garden DIY posts here

  13. December 25, 2009

    Some great green wall designs there.


  14. Julia #
    February 2, 2010

    Great how to build a greenwall clip here on youtube, from Australia!

  15. Radeta Radanovic #
    January 16, 2011

    Veoma zanimljivo znacajno i lepo.Radim magistrski rad na temu zeleni zivuci zidovi treba mi literatura.

  16. September 15, 2011

    Wow – slovenian, according to google translate. um – how to help? any suggestions?

  17. September 9, 2011

    what kinds of agricultural plants are possible to plant in green walls?.

  18. February 1, 2012

    We have been successful in growing Tomatoes, Cauliflower, Spinach, Salad leaves, Fenugreek and peas on walls without soil, moss, grass, rocks or perlite etc.
    We have the capability to grow almost all plants vertically.
    We are based out of India, kindly check our website

  19. February 7, 2012

    Green walls are cool.. and I wish I could install one…

    I need to get about a 4ft wide planter with a screen trellis that stands on its own. It cannot be attached to a wall. The total height with the planter and trellis should be around 8’. I also would like to be able to connect irrigation. Does anyone know of anything like this or where I might be able to purchase?

    Thank you for your time and any advice would be greatly appreciated.

    Aaron Wiener
    Landscape and Garden Coordinator
    Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

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