There are multiple ways to get started with a rooftop garden. You can start with planting in simple containers - big & small, build raised beds, or cover your terrace with proper soil beds like traditional gardens. If you choose to build a fully planted green roof then you need to prepare your rooftop to prevent any potential damage to the building.
The new buildings are usually constructed keeping waterproofing in mind, unlike the conventional buildings. In this article, we are going to tell you about the layers that you’ll need to install on your rooftop before planting a fully covered garden.
Read How to build your terrace garden to learn everything about terrace gardening.
The first and most important step is to waterproof your roof to prevent any leakage. The roof that you’re planning to plant your greens should be waterproofed, frost-resistant, and durable. Especially the areas where you’ll be planting your greens and placing the pots.
There are different directions one can follow while waterproofing their rooftop - by installing plastic sheets, polymer coating, etc. The waterproofing membrane that you choose to install for your rooftop should be root and rot-resistant. You can even consult a professional to get an expert opinion.
Mechanical strength to your rooftop, moisture resistance, and temperature control are a few of the multiple benefits provided by the protection/insulation layer. In most cases, the insulation layer is made of polyurethane foam, PIR panels, or XPS extruded polystyrene boards. It is advised to install PIR panels for rooftop gardens as they have milled edge connections and grooves that allow the rainwater to swiftly pass through the drainage systems.
Installing a protection layer for your rooftop will ensure the long life of your terrace garden and will keep all your worries away.
The purpose of installing a drainage system is to remove the saturated water as quickly as possible. A proper drainage system should quickly discharge the excess water from the vegetation layer and rooftop into the drainage system.
The common drainage material includes - porous mats that can soak in the extra water, granular materials (gravels, stone chips, etc), lightweight plastic sheets, or polystyrene drainage modules.
To prevent clogging of the drainage system and keep the drainage layer separate from the plants, the filter layer is installed. It prevents the deposit of fine particles and keeps the drainage system functioning. Nonwoven or geotextile layers are ideal in most circumstances.
The surface where you’ll grow your plants is called the vegetation layer. The growing medium (soil) will be prepared according to the plants that you choose to grow on your rooftop garden. Well-fertilized soil is best for rooftop gardening.
The thickness of soil will again depend on the choice of plants.
Grow a thriving kitchen garden on your rooftop with these seeds
Plants You Can Grow On Rooftop
You can grow almost anything and everything on your rooftop - from edible greens to beautiful flowers or a mix of both. The rooftop garden is sufficient to grow herbs, flowers, vegetables, and even dwarf trees. The plants you pick will depend on the temperature and other factors. If you’re a beginner, you can start with these easy-to-grow rooftop friendly vegetables:
Tomato plants can thrive well in raised beds, pots, and other containers. They are easy to grow and need minimal maintenance.
We use onions in almost all our dishes. They can be a great fit for your terrace gardens. Green onions are known to grow well in small containers.
Potatoes are probably the easiest vegetables to grow on your terrace. All they need is a good space to grow and water to give you healthy produce.
Known for its versatility and diverse usage, capsicum will make a great part of your terrace garden. With minimal care and lots of patience, you can grow capsicum in any planter.
Beets thrive well in small places, thanks to their small size. Give your salads some beet touch by growing them in your terrace gardens.
You can also take a peek at this Vegetable Seed Sowing Calendar For India to decide on the greens you would like to grow on your rooftop garden.
Get started with your terrace gardening and make the most of your space. Grab high-quality heirloom seeds from AllThatGrows today.