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Re: SPEC: I. tectorum (really on the rooftop)

  • To: Multiple recipients of list <iris-l@rt66.com>
  • Subject: Re: SPEC: I. tectorum (really on the rooftop)
  • From: "R. Dennis Hager" <rdhager@dmv.com>
  • Date: Mon, 6 Oct 1997 05:59:14 -0600 (MDT)

> <<BTW, my brother used to grow I. tectorum on his roof>>
> Now, I want to hear more about this. What kind of roof, what kind of SUN,
>  what kind of climate, what kind of maintenance..........please, Dennis. 

My brother built a house with a flat roof on a steep shady lot in
Raleigh, NC (Zone7) at the height of the energy crisis. He used steel
trusses to support corrugated steel, which was covered with several
inches of rigid foam insulation. Then a waterproof barrier (similar to a
pond liner) was installed with French drains to carry excess water and
12" of topsoil was filled over that. He grew all sorts of plants on the
roof, including vines that cascaded over the exterior walls of the
house. I never spent more than a day or so at his house, but I know that
maintenance was problematic, especially since access to the roof
required climbing a ladder. He chose plants that were tough and I don't
think he watered the roof after it was initially established.

Eventually, his family grew and he needed more space. Instead of
building out, he went up. The soil was removed (a job in itself) and he
built another story on the house. Last year, the hurricaine that ripped
through Raleigh removed most of the trees from his property. There is no
evidence left of the unusual (peculiar?) rooftop garden.

R. Dennis Hager
on Delmarva
Zone 6-7

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