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Ornamental grasses at Bluestem Nursery


Green Roofs

From our newsletters:

Our Enviro-Turf on the roof of a garage in the Vancouver area
Photo courtesy Bruce Hemstock, New Westminster BC
PWL Partnership Landscape Architects Inc.

We believe in green roofs and carry a variety of sedums that are particularly well-suited to grow on roof-tops, as well as our grass seed called Enviro-Turf.

Major benefits of green roofs include:

  • storm water retention
  • provides insulation
  • provides cooling
  • cleans the air
  • saves energy
  • sound absorption
  • food production
  • provides a wildlife habitat
  • looks nice
  • can be a place for urbanites to grow food

Bluestem Nursery predicts that by the turn of the next century, most roofs of the world will have plants growing on them. Switzerland requires that all new buildings have a green roof.

More Information

We are not experts on the subject of green roofs (we merely grow the plants). However in the past few years the amount and quality of information available on the Internet has grown considerably, so we provide here a number of links where you can find information. Please research these sites and/or contact them for further info regarding a green roof:


Visit our blog for more pics of Living Walls.

Jim recommends these 2 books: Planting Green Roofs and Living Walls and Green Roof Plants.

A number of our grasses have a shallow root system which makes them suitable for a green roof - Bouteloua gracilis and Carex flacca. We also have Sedums for use on rooftops (listed under perennials). Follow the appropriate link on our Price List / Order page.

Our Enviro-Turf also works well, as is shown in the picture above.

Planting Green Roofs and Living Walls Green Roof Plants: A Resource and Planting Guide

Cornelia Oberlander, a Landscape Architect in Vancouver, British Columbia is a proponent of green roofs and has written 2 documents on the subject, which are available here in PDF format: