The integration of greenery in dense urban areas presents a wonderful opportunity to address environmental issues and at the same time ensure the well-being and comfort of the local inhabitants. There are multiple ways in which greenery can be introduced in architecture to alter its aesthetics, create a new architectural identity, and to enhance the environment. One of the ways to do this is through a green façade with climbing plants. A resilient and inexpensive way to create thermally comfortable and visually appealing buildings, green facades are spectacular and contribute a lot of value to any space.
What is a Green Façade?
Green façades are walls that are created by growing climbing plants up and across the façade of the building. The best and most popular example of a green façade is a blanket of Ivy covering often seen on traditional brick buildings. Designed with greenery that is either planted directly into the soil or in pots at the base of the exterior wall, green facades can also feature containers at various levels across the buildings, especially in multi-story buildings. Apart from the obvious aesthetic benefits, green facades offer economic, environmental as well as physiological benefits to urban environments.
What is the difference between Green wall and Green Façade?
Green walls and green façades are different. Green façades with climbing plants use a trellis system to hold the vines of plants that are rooted in the ground or containers whereas green walls consist of a system of wall modules such as small containers or bags that hold the roots of each plant. The plants that are part of a green façade receive water directly from the rain and on-ground soil whereas living walls or green walls require a dedicated irrigation system in most cases. This is what makes them different in terms of cost and maintenance. Green walls are complex and expensive while green façades are simpler, easier to maintain and install, and inexpensive.
How to create a Green Façade with climbing plants?
To create a green façade with climbing plants you can choose self-climbing plants, or climbing plants that need a structure placed in front of the wall along which they can grow or hang.
When choosing climbing plants to create a green façade, ensure that you know the mode and method of their climbing. You need to investigate whether it is self-clinging or will it require a supporting structure. You also need to know how much they will grow – in terms of height and spread. This will help you determine how many plants you need to plant and how close you need to plant them. Also, while creating a green façade you should start by plating your west-facing wall. Direct exposure to sunlight will eventually give the additional benefit of shading the building.
What are the benefits of Green Façade?
The most important benefit of a green façade is visual appeal. While green façades make buildings look trendy and inspiring, they also function as acoustic solutions to dampen the noise from outside and bring great acoustic comfort inside. Green facades are also known to provide habitat for several urban creatures including butterflies, birds, and other insects.
Since green facades consist of greenery, it aids in improving the air quality around the building as it helps in capturing fine particulate matter. The layer of greenery on walls protects them from direct solar radiation which causes the space to absorb less heat during the day and lose less heat during the night. Thus, it helps in improving the energy efficiency of the building.