WORDS Sharon Stephenson
They date back as far as 600 BC when the Hanging Gardens of Babylon were one of the seven wonders of the ancient world. Fast forward a few thousand years and living walls – also known as green walls, vertical gardens and bio walls – are once again having their day in the sun.
These horticultural marvels are a feat of engineering: a lush tapestry of plants growing on or against vertical surfaces, such as building facades, interior walls or freestanding structures.
Frenchman Patrick Blanc, a botanist who has been credited with reviving the green wall trend, believes living walls have enormous benefits. “Having plants in our immediate environment can reduce stress, improve air quality and sound absorption, provide insulation and reduce energy costs, as well as reconnect us to nature,” says Patrick.
Generally speaking, green walls can be divided into two main categories – green facades and living walls. However, the concept of green walls can be attached to include a range of structures.