Because of the generosity of our members and partners who share in our tree-planting and conservation mission, the Foundation was able to construct the green roof demonstration. Our green roof is a lightweight system with only 2.5 inches of a specially formulated clay-based growing media. Most of the green elements on the roof will include sedum and other low-growing plants. The roof also contains a test plot for University of Nebraska–Lincoln professor of agronomy and horticulture Richard Sutton. He is using the test plot to determine which native grasses can thrive and provide benefits in a green roof setting.
Five Benefits of a Green Roof
Managing storm water:Green roofs retain and slow rainwater run-off during storms. The result is cleaner streams and rivers.
Clean air:In addition to providing oxygen, plants serve as natural air filters, removing pollutants from the air we breathe. Ten square feet of a typical green roof removes about a pound of soot, dust and particles from the air every year.
Energy savings:Green rooftops are much cooler than standard roofs. A building with a green roof can expect significant energy savings, up to 40 percent in some cases.
Filtering water:Rainwater released from the green roof is filtered as it travels through the assembly. As a result, water that eventually reaches rivers and streams is cleaner and healthier.
Habitat:Green roofs provide habitat for wildlife species in urban settings. It’s common to see native birds and insects feeling right at home on a green rooftop.
Lower temperatures:Green rooftops help mitigate the “urban heat island effect” where temperatures are as much as ten degrees hotter than surrounding suburbs.
Green Roof Assembly
- Growth media
- Drainage composite: filter fabric, moisture retention mat, and drainage mat
- Waterproof membrane
- Roof board
- Approved insulation
Arbor Day Foundation Green Roof
Location: Downtown Lincoln, NE | Size: 7,000 square feet | Initial planting: September 2010
Make-up: Sedum and grasses | Test plot: 400 square feet consisting of native prairie grasses