Living Walls

by Erika Woelfel

Just when you thought exterior siding materials only came in paint, wood, stone, metal, brick, vinyl, and stucco – now they come in living plants as well! Don’t believe it? Read on… 

“Living wall” conjures all kinds of images in our minds. With Halloween just around the corner, it is easy to recall a scary ghost story or two; they usually started with a neglected house on the outskirts of town, covered with vines and vegetation! Today’s living walls are a far cry from that vision, having become an art form and popular trend in urban landscaping and interior architecture. Living walls covered in plants and vegetation are used to decorate building interiors and beautify cities – making them healthier, greener and ultimately more enjoyable. Not only do vertical gardens (another phrase for living walls) improve the appearance of modern buildings, they improve air quality and lower energy use as well. Living walls are found everywhere plants will grow. Airports, shopping malls, hotels, museums, office towers.

A fantastic living wall is found on the Musee du Quai Branly in Paris.

Seasonal color of the greenery on this wall completely changes the look of this apartment.

Greenery softens the edges of a modern building

A variety of textures and greenery creates a vertical landscape on the CaixaForum Museum in Madrid, Spain. 15,000 plants and 250 species are used to create the vibrant effect.

Living walls are found indoors as well. A small botanical oasis creates a unique statement to the entrance to this home.

Colorfully yours,




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