When a landscaping project is being planned there will often be requests for features to be included in the landscape design that are not as common as others. These range from unusual plants, exotically designed structures, and the one which is the subject of this article, namely vertical gardens.
Vertical gardens are becoming more popular in landscaping and are requested for different reasons. A common reason is that the space available in the landscape design is extremely small and thus growing vertically makes the most use of the space that is available. Another reason is simply that a homeowner likes the idea of plants growing upwards and downwards.
Vertical gardens are also a great way to make what would otherwise be a drab, uninteresting wall, into something organic, alive, and full of colour. We are going to look further at these reasons, and some others that make including a vertical garden in your landscape design a fantastic idea.
What Is A Vertical Garden?
Before we go further, we thought we should clarify what a vertical garden is for those who have not come across this gardening feature before. A vertical garden is a means to grow plants of all types without their roots having to be in the soil in the ground. Instead, the roots will be in pots or other plant containers which are attached to the structure. The term often used for this type of planting is hydroponics.
The pots and containers we mentioned can come in all shapes and they are fixed to a structure that is either freestanding or will be attached to a wall or a fence. The layout of the plants can be configured as you wish so they could be in rows, columns, or aligned in shapes such as circles, squares, or even triangles.
Surprisingly, vertical gardens have only been around for 80+ years after they were first introduced to the horticultural world by a University of Illinois professor called Stanley Hart White in the late 1930s. His concept was further developed by the French botanist Patrick Blanc who introduced the idea of walls being used to grow plants and created the hydroponic irrigation system which could sustain them.
Reasons Why You Should Consider A Vertical Garden In Your Landscape Design
It Covers Blank Backgrounds
One of the most obvious reasons for having a vertical garden is that it can hide a bare wall. With you presumably wanting to maximise the visual appeal of your landscaping and the garden it creates, a blank wall is going to inspire no one, nor does it provide any aesthetic appeal whatsoever. However, if the blank wall has a vertical garden attached to it and is covered by it, all that is reversed.
You Can Grow More In Less Space
Although it may seem strange to mention it, there really are no limits to plants growing upwards. In other words, the sky is the limit! However, you only have a finite amount of space horizontally aka the size of your garden. This is why vertical gardens are great for all garden sizes because in larger ones they provide even more planting opportunities, and in small gardens they can give you the chance to have plants and flowers that otherwise you would not have the space for.
Easy To Maintain
Regardless of your age, health, and mobility, maintaining a garden can take its toll on your body, and this is especially so if you have to continually bend over or crouch down to prune plants, for example. Compare that to a vertical garden and you being able to stand upright and maintain it directly in front of you with the minimum amount of bending over or crouching down.
Plants Insulate Your Home
If you have a vertical garden on one or more walls of your home, the plants that grow there provide insulation in the colder months and absorb much of the heat throughout the summer. Not only will this make your home feel more comfortable when you are inside, but it can also mean your power bills are lower due to having the heating or air conditioning turned down.
It Can Provide Shade And Privacy
Remember when we mentioned that vertical gardens can be grown on freestanding structures rather than on a wall? Well, if they are, it provides you with two more benefits. The first is that your plants and flowers can provide you with shade if they are between you and the point of sunlight. They can also provide you with privacy which might be important if they surround a quiet area in your garden where you like to meditate or relax whilst reading a book, for example.