The Benefits of a Green Roof in the Winter
As the Winter season is in full swing, we thought we would share with you the range of benefits of having a GrufeKit green roof in the Winter.
1. Natural Insulation
The chill of winter is no match for the natural insulation provided by a GrufeKit green roof. The plants keep your building naturally insulated from the elements and therefore help to conserve energy throughout the winter. This contributes to lower heating costs, energy efficiency and sustainability.
2. Snow Load Mitigation
During the Winter months we may see some snow! A GrufeKit green roof will prevent snow and ice from building up on the waterproof membrane, helping with temperature regulation and the weight of the snow from becoming a burden on your building’s structure.
3. Stormwater Management
As well as snow load mitigation, a GrufeKit green roof can help manage stormwater. Green roofs are a type of natural flood management. In urban areas roofs make up large areas of hard standing and runoff can be huge. The plants on a green roof use up a small amount of water, however the substrate beneath them will soak up a significant amount of water. The saturated soil will slowly release water off the roof, but the green roof slows the process down reducing the risk of a flash flood. Green roofs alone would not prevent flooding, however as part of a wider rainwater management scheme they can be a useful contribution.
4. Psychological benefits of a green roof
Access to green spaces has a profound impact on mental well-being, even in the winter. Green roofs offer you a serene and visually appealing escape and can look even more beautiful among the frost and snow, especially as our sedum GrufeTiles stay green all year round. It has been found that true natural settings provide greater mood improvement (Browning et al. 2020.), meaning a green roof would be a perfect addition to improving your mood, especially at this time of year. Interaction with green spaces can also help reduce stress hormone levels (Boll et al. 2020).
5. Biodiversity Support in Winter
Winter can be challenging for wildlife, but green roofs provide a haven. The plants offer shelter and sustenance for birds and insects, contributing to urban biodiversity. Even in the colder months, green roofs remain bustling ecosystems.
6. How to maintain your green roof in Winter
While green roofs are designed with withstand winter, they still benefit from proper care. Sedum will go red when stressed through dry or cold weather and sometimes when it is low on organic nutrients. This does not mean the roof is dead. You can either wait for rain or irrigate the roof once a week for approximately 1 hour. If you feel you need to do more than this, we recommend feeding the plants with fish, blood and bone, which can be found in most garden supply stores.
It is also important to ensure the gutters or drainage outlets are cleared of vegetation and that the stone perimeters are clear of dead and live plants.