Benefits of a living wall outdoor21 January 2021
Nature has never been more important, especially in urban areas where there is often a lack of space for greenery. An outdoor plant wall is one way to overcome this, as an external green wall adds not only an instantly attractive, naturally beautiful element to an exterior but with many other benefits as well. Here are nine benefits of a living wall:
Benefits of a living wall
- Influence on temperature
- Retains water
- Contributes to biodiversity
- Contributes to air purification
- Produces oxygen
- Extends the lifespan of the facade
- Added acoustic value
- Multifunctional use of space
- Sustainable living environment
A green wall influences the temperature
The “heat island effect” occurs when an urban area’s temperature is higher compared to its surrounding rural area. Grey structures and buildings heat up quickly from the sun’s rays because the building consists of materials such as concrete, brick and glass – all materials that retain heat. Living walls on the outside of the building can ensure that the facade is cooled by providing natural shade. Research has shown that on sunny days an outdoor green wall stays more than 7 degrees cooler than a non-shaded equivalent. Adding greenery to the building can therefore be seen as a natural measure to lower the temperature in urban areas.
Living walls retain water
Another benefit of a green wall is that it retains and absorbs rainwater. Across the globe, the changing climate has led to increased rainfall and an increased risk of flooding. Again, a vertical plant wall offers a good solution here. The plants and substrate in the plant walls act as a water buffer and absorb the water. By retaining the moisture longer, the amount of water that is simultaneously discharged to the sewer and drainage systems is greatly reduced.
Living plant walls contribute to biodiversity
Installing an outdoor green wall contributes to biodiversity. The different plants you can choose for your green wall attract species of birds, butterflies and insects. A living wall not only serves as a handy source of food but also offers nesting options and shelter. Birds can build their own nests within, and you could also give an extra helping hand by hanging a birdhouse within the vertical plant wall itself.
A green wall contributes to air purification
Air pollution is an ever-increasing worrying problem. Emissions from urban traffic and industry, such as particulate matter, nitrogen oxides and volatile organic compounds, are harmful to health and the environment. The plant walls outside are able to capture these air pollutants and shield them from the pollution itself. The air is purified in a natural and simple way, which is important for improving air quality.
Plant walls outside produce oxygen
A very important benefit of a living wall is that greenery contributes to the production of oxygen – vital for our everyday lives. The leaves of the plants have the ability to convert CO2 into oxygen. Living plant walls, therefore, increase the production of oxygen.
Green walls extend the lifespan of the facade
Another benefit of a green wall is the extended lifespan of the facade. Because the living wall is covered by plants, the facade is less susceptible to wear. This gives a facade a longer lifespan. A living wall has to withstand many weather conditions such as sun, wind, rain and temperature changes. By placing a green wall on the outside of the facade, it offers protection to the building because it is no longer directly exposed to the weather.
Living walls have added acoustic value
A vertical plant wall also has a sound-absorbing effect, not only on its exterior but within the building too. Ambient noise is reduced because a green wall prevents sound reflection between buildings. The leaves in the outdoor plant wall ensure that traffic noise or noise from children playing, for example, is dampened. By affixing plant walls to a building, noise levels of 2.5 to 3 decibels can be counteracted. A green wall not only has a sound-absorbing effect, but the calming sounds of its rustling foliage also reduce stress and add to the overall positive experience.
A living wall contributes to multifunctional use of space
There is a great lack of space in cities into which plants can be added. By making a facade green, the lack of space can be overcome and its use extending into a multifunctional open space within the living environment. For people who do not have a garden but still want to enjoy natural greenery in their neighbourhood, a green wall is a welcome bonus, creating a vertical garden.
Green walls provide a sustainable living environment
Overall, the introduction of a living wall facade to the building helps create a sustainable living environment. Whether in the ability of a vertical plant wall to attract birds, butterflies and insects or in its benefits to local residents who enjoy added greenery in an otherwise grey and bleak landscape, living walls play an important role in a sustainable living environment.
Installing a living wall can be done in various ways. A green wall system that is easy to install is the Mobilane LivePanel Outdoor. This system can also be created to your own tastes, themes, colours and designs, helping you transform buildings into beautifully natural eye-catchers, thanks to an outdoor plant wall.