Last updated: August 18, 2021

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Nature is as much a part of us as we are a part of it. Thanks to it, our spaces are not only colourful, but also full of life. Welcome to ReviewBox, in this article we will talk about a different way of using plants: Green walls.

They consist of systems fixed to any wall or flat surface, which are made with vegetation. They can be artificial or natural, and draw designs with different colours and species of plants. So we can say that green walls are considered as vertical gardens.




Summary

  • Artificial green walls are installations that offer us harmony and vitality in our spaces. We will briefly explain what they are and to whom we owe their creation. We will also briefly explore the requirements for their installation.
  • Natural or artificial green wall, both fall into the same category, but they are different structures. Each one will offer us a series of properties, which we will have to take into account for their installation. In this article we will talk about each one and their main characteristics.
  • We will also show you some of the most important purchasing factors to keep in mind. From the main types of structure, the irrigation systems, as well as the types of green walls or the two different types of space possible.

The Best Green Wall: Our Picks

Buying Guide

In this section we will answer some of the most frequently asked questions about green walls. We will also show you the variants you can find of them, as well as the characteristics that distinguish them from each other.

Vertical gardens allow us to place any type of plant we wish. (Photo:piksel / 123rf.com)

What is a green wall?

Green walls are sustainable structures, made of some kind of vegetation and usually vertical. They contain an irrigation system, which allows water to circulate continuously and prevents plants from wilting. For their installation it is necessary to waterproof the area, as well as to consider the drainage system.

It has become popular for decoration in homes and offices

Their use has become popular in work environments, in order to create natural spaces within the office. They have also become one of the most popular forms of home decoration, as they offer all the advantages of a green environment inside the home.

Who invented the green wall?

We owe the creation of the green wall to the architect Stanley Hart White in 1959. But it was the French botanist Patrick Blanc who perfected the concept. He was dedicated to the search for different strategies and systems that would allow the propagation of a natural environment in unusual spaces.

It was in the 1980s that the Frenchman's first vertical garden saw the light of day. However, it slowly began to gain popularity in the 1990s. Blanc not only demonstrated the ability of plants to grow in any kind of environment, he also proved that they do not necessarily require soil to thrive.

What is required to install the artificial green wall?

One of the biggest advantages of the artificial green wall is its quick and easy installation. The first thing to consider is the selection and measurement of the space, to know the amount of square metres we will need. Then we must decide whether to paint the area green, to give greater uniformity to the foliage.

This type of foliage has a netting on the back, which allows us to fix it easily with a nail and hammer. In some cases, such as concrete or stone walls, we will need a drill. On the other hand, surfaces such as cyclone screens, we only need plastic straps for installation.

Green Wall: Natural or Artificial - What should you pay attention to?

There are two variants of the green wall that are distinguished by their very nature. The natural one will offer you an organic landscape, however it will take more time and money to install. On the other hand, the artificial wall reduces costs significantly, while providing some of the main benefits of this concept.

Natural. Green walls consist of a homogeneous surface, most commonly of vines, moss or ivy. They completely cover the area where they are installed, without leaving any of the original surface exposed. For their installation it is necessary to waterproof the area where they will be placed.

Artificial. These walls are simpler to install. They reduce both maintenance costs and the requirements to place them on the wall. They have the great advantage of withstanding climatic changes and the passage of time, without drastically modifying their appearance.

Natural Artificial
Requirements for installation Waterproofing, installation of structure, irrigation and drainage system Nails, drill or plastic straps
Type of plants Natural: ferns, ivy, vines, moss, cretonne, begonias or dew Artificial: From synthetic grass to artificial vines
Watering system Hydroponic or manual No need
Recommended environment Open or outdoor spaces Indoors and outdoors

Where to buy a green wall?

Before purchasing your green wall, you should consider the measurements of the area where you want to place it. This will not only help you determine the number of square metres of foliage needed, but will also give you an approximate cost estimate, as well as the type of requirements you will need to install it.

There are specialised shops such as Alkafer, Ecoyaab or Te quiero verde, which offer both the product and an installation service. On the internet through Amazon, Linio or Mercado Libre, as well as Ranka or Muro Verde, the latter stand out for their wide catalogue and price range.

Buying criteria: factors that allow you to compare and rate the different models of green walls

Finally, we will talk about the most important factors you should consider before purchasing your green wall. These will help you make a more conscious, informed and targeted purchase decision.

  • Space
  • Type
  • Structure
  • Irrigation system

Space

First you need to ask yourself in which space you want to place your green wall. Whether indoors or outdoors, each will directly affect the longevity of your artificial foliage. As well as offering certain aesthetic benefits

Indoors. A green wall will always increase the value of the space where it is placed. If you are looking for a special and long-lasting touch to your home or work space, these are ideal. Not only will you be able to forget about their maintenance, but they represent an excellent method for

Outdoors. We recommend an outdoor green wall if you are looking for an aesthetic alternative that offers you more privacy. They are also perfect for reducing noise pollution from outside and reducing the temperature of the building by 3 to 5 degrees Celsius. At the same time, it reduces the possibility of damage to the facade.

Type

The next thing to keep in mind is the type of plant you want to use. Natural or artificial, the former requires special and continuous care. The latter, on the other hand, can remain intact without user intervention and without the need for watering.

Natural. Natural green walls offer you spaces with a greater ecological impact, filtering out any type of environmental pollution. They are perfect for exteriors or outdoor spaces, due to their need for sunlight, as well as their technical specifications such as irrigation and drainage systems.

Artificial. Recommended for indoors or small areas, where there is no access to the water system, as there is no risk of leakage or stagnation. Based on the psychological impact of the colour green on people, it has been shown to reduce stress levels in work spaces.

Structure

We can find 3 main structures in green walls. These are characterised by being the most common among the public, either because of their simplicity, low installation cost or their aesthetic quality. Below, we will briefly explain each of these.

Growing wall. If you are looking for the perfect green wall for outdoors, the planting wall is the way to go. However, the more complex and larger models require a special structure, either metallic or geotextile, to support the artificial foliage.

Live frame. Live frames are the recommended option for interiors. For these, the geotextile or mesh system is of great help, as the artificial foliage adheres very easily. We will be able to reduce the number of nails, as well as paint, as it will completely homogenise the background with a similar colour.

Potting structure. We recommend a potting frame if you are looking for a variant to the flat dimension. These allow you to be entirely in charge of their conception and installation. You can use recyclable materials such as bottles or adapted wooden boxes, and then choose the plant species.

Did you know that exterior green walls completely absorb the sun's rays, thus significantly reducing the temperature inside the building?

Irrigation system

If you have made the decision to install a natural green wall, you will need to consider its irrigation system. We can divide it into two main categories: Manual, in the general case of potted structures and hydroponic; automated water recycling system perfect for growing walls.

Hydroponic. These consist of pipes that run through the general structure, hydrating the plants through dripping. It is perfect if you are looking for a system that does not demand too much of your attention, as you only have to change the water every 3 weeks or so.

Manual. If you have decided to install a vertical garden with a pot structure, you will have to water the plants yourself. This will depend on the nature of each plant, as well as the climatic conditions. However, some botanists recommend watering at least twice a week so as not to drown them.

No irrigation system. On the other hand, if you opt for an artificial green wall, you can forget about this factor. This offers savings both economically and in terms of water consumption. So, if you are looking for the option that reflects a saving of effort, materials and goes beyond the monetary, this is the recommendation.

(Featured image photo: Sineepun Somboonyarit / 123rf.com)

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