Living roofs are going to be big in the next few years. How do we know? Every year we provide over 10,000 consultations to UK homeowners, and more and more, these green wonders are popping up in the nation’s wishlist.
As the name might suggest, a living roof is where the roof of a home, extension, or outbuilding is fitted with its own mini-garden. This can be as simple as some turf or more flowering or succulent plant varieties might be incorporated.
If you’re thinking of adding a living roof to your home, here’s five things you should know...
There are two types of living roofs
The first thing to know about living roofs is that they can fall into two basic categories: turf and sedum roofs.
In order to add turf to your home, you’ll need to add at least 15 cm of soil to your roof. This adds a lot of extra weight when compared to its sedum counterpart. Because of this added load, special considerations will need to be made for the weight - meaning you’ll need to consult your structural engineer during the building regulations stage.
Sedum roofs, on the other hand, are so light they can usually be built on most properties. Rather than using grass, sedum roofs are made from succulents - a much more robust plant, which can survive easily in a drought. These succulents can come in a range of colours, such as red, white, or yellow.
They extend the life of your roof, plus other home benefits
Living roofs have shown to almost triple the life expectancy of the roofing below. This is thanks to the underlying structure being protected from mechanical damage, ultraviolet radiation, and extreme temperatures. In the long term, this means you (and future buyers) can get even longer out of your extension before any major work needs to be considered. Alongside this, there’ll be less day to day maintenance costs.