Eco-roofs, or green roofs, have continued to sprout up in residential neighborhoods throughout the U.S. over the last decade. Their burgeoning popularity largely stems from the environmental benefits they offer – such as stormwater retention, improved air quality, and assistance mitigating the urban heat island effect.
These low-maintenance wonders are populated with drought-resistant plants that require infrequent watering and weeding only once or twice annually, and the utility savings they yield quickly offset the higher upfront costs associated with installation.
The benefits of green roofs extend beyond environmental friendliness, however. Here are five additional reasons to consider coverage up high:
- Aesthetic appeal: Gravel, tar, and asphalt roofing materials are dull, at best, and eyesores at worst. Green roofs, however, offer an unexpected and uplifting burst of nature in a space that might otherwise go untouched and unnoticed. They have been credited with inspirational and psychological benefits, as well, helping to foster relaxation and reduce stress levels, while instilling a sense of pride throughout a community or neighborhood.
- Longer lifespan: Green roofs are said to double or triple the life of your roof. Their multiple layers – first, a waterproofing membrane followed by a root barrier, soil, and plants – offer protection from the harmful effects of the sun’s ultraviolet radiation, temperature fluctuations, wind, rain, and other elemental attacks that can cause standard roofing materials to expand, shrink, and deteriorate, while the plants and vegetation act as a natural insulator.
- Cooling properties: Because of this added insulation, benefits of a green roof include a more efficient cooling process for your home. The waterproof membrane that serves as a base for your green roof cuts down on the amount of heat entering the building. This reduces the temperature of your roof, which cools your home, and ultimately eases the strain placed on your air conditioning unit.
- Reduced noise pollution: Your green roof’s plant life, soil, and substrate can absorb ambient and intrusive sounds created by machinery, traffic, airplanes, and more.
- A secondary home: The benefits of a green roof are not strictly limited to the people in your neighborhood. The vegetation and plant life also provide a habitat for butterflies, birds, and insects that have been ousted from their former homes as a result of urban development.
Is a green roof in your future? At McHale Landscape Design, our horticulturists can help you select a striking selection of plants – such as wildflowers, succulents, grasses, and herbs – that thrive in only a few inches of soil and will be able to withstand the harsh elements up top. Residential green roofs are an increasingly viable and exciting option for homeowners to expand upon their landscape design, and we can help. Contact us today to schedule a home consultation.