As said in the blog “The Beautiful Benefits of Living Walls by Allison Dempsey”, these days you don’t need to go outside to get yourself a breath of fresh air. Living walls have been prevalent in Japan for years and have quickly increased in popularity in Canada starting around 2010. Living walls are commonly found in shopping malls, office spaces, and now, even in homes, these green fixtures of art and vitality are an eco-friendly design trend that brings the outdoors inside.
It describes a living wall – or green wall – as a self-sufficient vertical garden that attaches to the exterior or interior wall of a building. Not to be confused with ivy walls, living walls are installed and fastened directly to the wall. These plants receive water and nutrients from the structure they’re grown in rather than ivy which grows directly from the ground. Besides the numerous benefits, living walls are easy to care for, especially with the support of local companies who specialize in the installation and plant selection.
Christopher Curtis of Living Wall Concepts in Oakville says, “They’re excellent for both residential and commercial applications, they provide so many mental and physical benefits, especially in places like schools, dentist and doctor offices, nursing homes and hospices. They’re like living artwork.”
He adds, “lighting is a vital component for the ongoing success of these installations”, and suggests contacting a company like Living Wall Concepts that is well-versed in the process to help choose plants and set up a maintenance schedule.
“Our system uses no hard water lines or pumps, so it’s a little bit easier,” he says. The size of the living wall can vary greatly, from two by two feet to 10 feet by 20 feet. Some plants that work well include Pothos, Peace Lilies, Janet Craigs, and Dracaenas.
With a living wall, air purification and air quality are unparalleled. Space isn’t an issue. Even apartments can handle smaller versions of the walls with as few as 10 plants.
Herb walls are also a great idea, perfect for foodies who want fresh herbs year-round and through the harsh Canadian climate. The key ingredient is proper care, and that’s something we as a company can do for the owner.
There are a number of professional buildings that can benefit from installations, including restaurants, which are a popular place for living walls to enhance guests’ experiences.
Aside from being aesthetically pleasing, living walls offer numerous health benefits.
In places of care, like hospitals, living walls can greatly reduce anxiety, stress, and depression, and are proven to enhance and speed up healing. There’s lots of room for creativity. Walls can be used as interior design additions, and acoustic or sound absorption trappings in high-traffic areas. Any chance to go natural and get rid of plastic, is a good step forward.
The blog also talks about the installation process and asks customers to take consultation to determine what space is available, the level of commitment and other requirements a customer may have. A consultation helps the customer find the best and most appropriate living wall system to ensure both aesthetics and top functionality are equally addressed, followed by irrigation and lighting needs, plant selection and desired maintenance. Trained installation professionals will install your living wall system filled with specific plant species.
“The key to success with any living wall is maintenance”, says Curtis. Based on the species of plants selected for your living wall, it will require weekly, bi-weekly or monthly attention to ensure the plants thrive. “Plants should also be monitored to ensure there are no damaging pests and that both the irrigation and fertilizer systems are working properly”, says Curtis.
Allison Dempsey in her blog “The Beautiful Benefits of Living Walls” discusses the benefits of Living Walls which provide huge perks to a work environment. When you consider just how much time you spend at your place of business, living walls can brighten even the dullest interior and improve employee retention by creating a positive and stimulating workplace. Her blog mentions findings of a research which has found that blood pressure levels are lower when plants are present and they can also help combat fatigue, throat irritation, dry and itchy eyes, difficulty concentrating, dizziness, and irritability.
Lastly, if you need any further incentive to bring a living wall into your life, consider these proven benefits: plants are shown to increase productivity, enhance test grades, reduce stress and anxiety, improve air quality, provide humidity regulation, and improve the general quality of life. People surrounded by living walls have been found to have improved mental and physical health, feel more content and relaxed, and are more creative in general.
This is a design worth getting behind. Breathe deeply, relax and enjoy your own little pocket of greenery.
Allison Dempsey. (2019, September 23). The Beautiful Benefits Of Living Walls. Retrieved from https://looklocalmagazine.com/blog/2019/09/23/living-walls/
What are Living Walls? Living walls or green walls are self sufficient vertical gardens that are attached to the exterior or interior of a building. They differ from green façades (e.g. ivy walls) in that the plants root in a structural support which is fastened to the wall itself. The plants receive water and nutrients from within the vertical support instead of from the ground.
Diversity is the key and by utilizing hundreds of different types of plants we create striking patterns and unique designs. We achieve this by utilizing the multitude of colours, textures and sizes that nature provides. Our system accommodates flowering perennials, beautiful foliage plants, ground covers and even allows for bushes, shrubs, and small trees!
Living walls are also referred to as green walls, vertical gardens or in French, mur végétal. The French botanist and artist Patrick Blanc was a pioneer by creating the first vertical garden over 30 years ago.
Our system consists of a frame, waterproof panels, an automatic irrigation system, special materials, lights when needed and of course plants. The frame is built in front of a pre existing wall and attached at various points; there is no damage done to the building. Waterproof panels are mounted to the frame; these are rigid and provide structural support. There is a layer of air between the building and the panels which enables the building to ‘breathe’. This adds beneficial insulating properties and acts like rain-screening to protect the building envelop.
Living walls are a surefire way to enhance a building’s visuals and improve air quality, employee alertness and energy levels. Over the past half century, a notable increase of urban-living seekers has led to a considerable uptick in air pollution and loss of green spaces. Living walls (also commonly referred to as vertical gardens or living green walls) are a wonderful solution for any property interested in improving their space with intrinsic benefits of nature.
They infuse the dull expanse of interiors with life-renewing greenery. They offer an inspirational and aesthetically intriguing natural boost to employee morale. Whether they are installed on the exterior or interior of a building, the structures of living, breathing plant life create the “wow factor” so many interior designers seek while championing sustainability.
An emerging trend in green design, these vertically sprawling gardens of green are springing to life across the world on the exteriors of skyscrapers, in hotel lobbies, office reception areas and more.