On Sunday we got our hands dirty and planted over 700 individual sedums, June grasses, pasture sage and allium on our garage roof. It only took three hours, but that was due to a lot of pre-planning and organization on behalf of our green roof consultant, Michael Molaro.
Based on his experience with the green roof at the University of Saskatchewan's law building, Michael knew what plants were likely to last through our crazy winters -- and what wasn't. He created a planting pattern for us that considered the various soil depths on the roof and its slope. The garage roof gently slopes upward from our vantage point inside the house, so taller plants (the grasses and allium) went at the far (higher) end so that every variety could be seen from the house. One of the sedum varieties will have yellow flowers later in the summer, and another variety will have pink blooms, so the view will change throughout the season.
Below are half of the sedums we planted.
This variety is my favourite. I love the rounded leaves and the green-grey colour.
Michael planned out the location and spacing of each individual plant on a grid system. It was all mapped out on paper, and he used string to recreate the grid on the roof. Each variety was represented by a different coloured straw. He laid out each straw accordingly and we followed behind, replacing each straw with its corresponding plant variety.
Here's where I start to have trouble keeping my fingers off my lens...
As you'll see below, the planting pattern is symmetrical. Over time, the plants will grow and spread until the soil is no longer visible.
This photo was taken yesterday - four days in. It's been warm and sunny in the past week, so we've watered it twice now. Once the plants are established, it shouldn't require watering assuming average rainfalls. Michael is creating a maintenance plan for us to keep it looking lush and green.
I'll follow up with one last post -- a video taken by a time lapse camera that recorded our planting session.