Tips for choosing plants for green roof system

One concept which is fast penetrating in urban areas is green roof systems. This is definitely a good way of going green. However one needs to keep in mind certain things while designing a green roof. Mentioned below are some useful things about green roofs.

Advantages of green roofs


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Green roofs are beneficial for the environment. They not only help in improving the quality of air but they also help in reducing a number of pollutants in rainwater. They also prevent the draining of a large amount of rainwater in the sewage system. This is also a cost-effective option as it provides thermal insulation and reduces thecost of heating and cooling.

Different types of green roof plants



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  • Succulents:Succulents like colourful sedums are an ideal choice. The beautiful flowers, different forms and textures of the succulents will make your green roof look beautiful. These succulents help in providing shading across the surface.
  • Perennials:Herbaceous perennials like rhizhomes,stolons,ornamental grasses etc can be used for green roofs. Geotypes like bulbs, corms and tubers can also be used.
  • Annuals:One can also make use of annuals like vegetables;ephemerals from dry and waterless climates etc can be used. But one needs to make sure that these annuals do not become weeds.
  • Other Plants:Turfs,shrubs etc can also be used for green roofs.Many people create sports turf on their roofs. Small trees upto 5 meters can be grown easily on green roofs.

Useful tips

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  • Aesthetic sense:While selecting the plants, make sure that they will look aesthetically appealing. The plants that are selected must look attractive. Remember that your roof is going to be visible to your neighbours especially if the roof has a steep pitch and you do not want the roof to look shabby do you?
  • Use of the roof:First be clear about how you are going to use the roof. You need to select the plants based on the use of the roof. Some people make use of the roof for storm water management, insulation etc.
  • Proper selection:Make sure that the plants that you select have good smells and these plants should not attract insects and rodents.
  • Climatic conditions of the area:Consider the climatic conditions of the place where you live. If you live in a place where the climatic conditions are dry then choose drought tolerant plants. Always give survival of plants the topmost priority.
  • Growing media:The growing media that you use to grow the plants should be obviously rich in nutrients and it should be able to hold water. The growing media should not break down easily. Your growing media should not dry out easily and it should also not allow undesirable plants like weeds with deep roots to grow.
  • Installation of the plants:You can grow these plants in many different ways. You can directly grow them on the roof or you can first grow them as plugs on the ground and then install them on the roof. You can also get these plants in trays from the manufacturer.
  • Maintenance of the plants:Proper maintenance is a must for plants. You may have to group the plants while planting them on the roof so that maintaining them becomes simple. You need to group the plants based on their water requirements,irrigation requirements etc.

Green roofs are a great way of making your roof look amazing and it also helps you do your bit in keeping the environment clean and green. Make sure that you select the right plants and follow the tips while designing your green roof.

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