Artificial Green Walls

Posted: 05/12/2014 in Green Walls
When it comes to vertical greening, natural is rarely easy. Sometimes the costs of building and maintaining a natural green wall simply outweigh the benefits. A living wall can fail and die in a matter of weeks without proper care and management, and --not to put too fine a point on it -- professional expertise.

‘Greening’, however, is taking on a new dimension. With the development of artificial vertical garden systems that look and feel like the real thing, creating inspiring expanses of green has become as simple as cake. Maybe even simpler.

Artificial vertical garden systems eliminate, or minimise, the effort required to sustain living walls. Weight issues, for one, fall away. Quite literally, artificial vertical garden panels take the load off wall surfaces. Instead of trays laden with soil, peat and vegetation cover, artificial systems use stainless steel grill panels to which the replicated foliage are attached. These grids are lightweight and easy to handle. Walls remain relatively stress-free and the panels can be niftily manoeuvred in place as well.

Crucially, artificial vertical gardens do not need irrigation, that elan vital of living walls. No more fretting over whether plants are getting proper nutrition and watering. No need for tanks and valves and complicated equipment that can break down, causing more garden grief. The only watering on the agenda is the occasional hosing, for general cleaning.

Natural lighting is another devil defeated. Many living-wall proposals are scuppered for the lack of proper lighting, leaving dull, featureless spaces that instinctively avert eyes. In this respect, artificial systems clearly have one up on nature. They provide the perfect solution for screening or decorating areas which natural light cannot reach. You get greening where you wouldn’t have.

Artificial green walls likewise do away with installation worries. One likely wouldn’t even need professional help for small- or home-scale projects. Artificial systems can be easily fixed to wall surfaces, using one’s DIY smarts. Larger walls, like those for commercial spaces, go up in a fraction of the time it takes for a living one.

Of course, one of the major advantages of artificial over natural is the sizable cost differential between the two. A square meter of living green wall can cost around £1,000 to design, supply and install. Compare this to a 100 cm by 100 cm panel of Vistagreen, the leading producer of artificial vertical garden solutions in Europe, which costs less than £500. Considering that outlays for large living walls can be staggering, artificial green walls become a more attractive, cost-effective alternative when scaling up.

Moreover, expenditures for artificial green walls tend to be one-off; those for living walls are cumulative, with maintenance and trouble-shooting charges subject to inflation. Costs also can add up, especially when planting fails or a re-design is needed.

And what about aesthetics, can fair nature ever be bested, one asks? If the ultra-realism of today’s artificial greenery still doesn’t satisfy, then its dependability might. Artificial foliage will never turn brown, patchy, woody, leggy and all else, it will stay the same day in and day out. Natural green walls, on the other hand, are only as good as the people who care for them. The sums spent on building a beautiful green wall to uplift the senses feel tragic when you let your wall turn bare and sorry-looking.

As the trend for vertical gardens grows, an increasing appreciation for the practicalities and felicities of artificial green walls can only follow. Artificial vertical garden providers are hard at work creating more value for their products. Vistagreen panels, for one, are fire-rated and UV-protected for three years so fading is minimal. Moreover, new styles are regularly introduced, which combine feasts of green with vari-coloured blooms, producing different textures and tones. Panel styles can be artfully combined to create stunning vistas of green.

Artificial Green Walls

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Artificial Green Walls