True confession…I find most green walls…well…too green. I find them to be dramatic, but my brain needs visual space and covering everything from head to toe in plants is not always my idea of beauty. Well, it is in the jungle–and in certain urban situations where the opposite can also be oppressive. Even inside, green walls make me feel well… claustrophobic. Before I take a boatload of manure for this idea, hear me out.
I love the idea of growing things vertically, up over arbors, through other plants, even up walls, but I don’t need a vertical green carpet. I am a fan of Patrick Blanc’s work, but can’t imagine it everywhere.
Without skilled and thoughtful installation and proper maintenance it is easy for a green wall to end up looking like the example below.
Now with all of that said, here are two sensible alternatives that I have seen. Still green, still vertical, still pants on walls. I wrote about the first over a year ago as part of a post on eco-luxury –Flora Grubb’s beautiful green walls at the Bardessono resort in Napa. There’s space for the eye to rest and there’s plenty of green and drama.
The next, I have no experience with but they do exactly what I’m thinking about. From the French company, Vertilignes (translation: green lines) is a green wall unit that accomodates 28 plants that use a simple planting and watering system. There is a mirrored variation. It’s simple, clean and green. It has visual breathing space.
So the next time when thinking about green walls, try to envision a jungle or try to envision a place that is green but also offers a place to rest visually. Now bring on the manure.