These two terms are often used interchangeably, but there are significant differences between green roofs and rooftop gardens. Both are installed atop buildings which are structurally suited for such installations. Both utilize plants. Both benefit the environment. But the difference between a green roof and a rooftop garden is kind of like the difference between a turf lawn and a patio garden bed with trees and shrubs. A green roof, like your lawn, is generally flat, thin (4-6” of soil) and planted with a family of short plants called sedum. Sedum is drought tolerant and can take extremes of heat and wind while protecting the roof membrane from the sun’s UV rays and providing environmental benefits like stormwater management, ambient temperature stabilization, soundproofing, etc.

A rooftop garden, on the other hand, is like your backyard patio space – but on top of a roof. Almost anything you can put into a ground level patio can be installed on a rooftop. Large and small plants. Barbecue grills. Furniture. Lighting. Stone, wood, water features, spas, sound systems, even putting greens. Just about anything is possible.

CSG has been designing and installing rooftop gardens for years, and now we are a Certified Installer of the LiveRoof® pre-vegetated green roof system. Rather than spreading tons of soil on a building roof and then planting sedum within it – and having to monitor it for months or years against weeds and other problems – LiveRoof® uses pre-grown modules to create an instant green roof. And now CSG is using LiveRoof® for its green roof installations or as a design element within its rooftop garden designs. So we can provide the best of both worlds.

Click on the link to see more of what makes LiveRoof® unique, then let’s talk about using LiveRoof® for your rooftop installation.

Photography ©2009 LiveRoof, LLC. Used by permission.

1 Comment

  1. Have Your Roof (or Wall) and Eat it Too – The Pink-Bellied Flamingo
    May 17, 2017

    […] Both are installed atop buildings which are structurally suited for such installations. Both utilise plants. Both benefit the environment. But the difference between a green roof and a rooftop garden is sort of like the difference between a lawn that has grass on it and a patio garden bed or courtyard with trees and shrubs. A green roof is generally flat, with a family of short plants called sedum. They are drought tolerant and can take extreme cases of wind and sun. It protects the roof membrane from the sun and can aid in the prevention of other things too! (read more here) […]

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