Living Walls: What are they good for?

When you think of living walls and living privacy fences our minds imagine hedges. These are the original and highly effective privacy screens. Hedges have been used by mankind since the beginning, living walls serve many purposes such as keeping livestock in and predators out.

Living walls and living privacy fences have so many benefits. We often forget that they might even be better than their man made competition. Our natural hedges are great for privacy, once the hedge is established, you can not see through the fence all year long.

Natural hedges are not only for privacy but they also reduce noise levels significantly.

Large development companies have spent millions of dollars trying to come up with ways to reduce noise in the residential areas with sound reducing fencing. Amazingly enough trees, plants and hedges do it automatically and we often over look how effective they are in a urban setting.

It would be wonderful if everyone had a large beautiful hedge surrounding their property but that is not always ideal. The landscape industry has come up with an alternative:  Living walls. These beautiful works  of art are not as hard to create as you think! Plants offer privacy, noise reduction, small space gardening, cleaner air, and cooler buildings. There is a great step by step program on livewall.com where they walk you through the process. They give tips on soil types for your specific plants, watering advice and containers options.

Living Walls- Planting options

There are a few different types of plants you can grow.

Edible veggies, herbs and annuals. These are generally very bright and colourful, and require a good peat or coconut soils.  Depending on your climate- you need to replant them every year.

Perennials, vines, and tropical plants are another option for your living walls. With a long life span and the ability to split them every 3-5 years, they are a worth while investment and can grow lush and beautiful! A good potting soil, perlite or compost pine bark is a good growing media for these sort of plants.

Succulents are very unique and add a totally new look to the living walls. Succulents can last decades without replanting, they come in so many different shapes, sizes and textures you are never bored. A special rock gardening soil will sustain these plants and the less organic matter the better.

Be sure to water the plants gently, a simple drip irrigation often is the best choice for healthy plants. Occasionally adding fertilizer either in slow release form or water soluble form gives them the food they need to thrive.

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Being part of this huge movement of green living is a big honour. The future generations are relying on people like you and me to improve air quality, reduce noise pollution, and reduce the city heat. This is a great step in the right direction and every home owner should take ownership in the future.

 

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