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Green Roof Plant Blog

Opuntia humifusa

Green Team at Green Roof Technology, - Monday, December 17, 2012

 By: Samantha Yurek


Photo by Jorg Breuning 

Commonly known as the Prickly Pear Cactus, this plant does an exceptional job of soaking up water during a rain event and storing it for future days spent basking in the sun.  It produces a shallow and fibrous root system making it an ideal option for any extensive green roof design.  The Prickly Pear will flourish under a wide range of conditions including various temperatures, rainfall events, and soil types.  In late spring or early summer, the yellow flower will bring aesthetic value to the roof along with attracting pollinating insects.  The Prickly Pear is a low growing perennial which spreads easily, but will not dominate the roof space.  It’s also a plus that this particular cactus is native to the eastern half of the United States.   



Delosperma nubigenum

Jeff Harrison - Monday, July 02, 2012

By Kat Harrold


Photo by Jorg Breuning

Delosperma nubigenum

Sedum lydium

Jeff Harrison - Monday, June 04, 2012

By Kat Harrold


Photo by ~

Sedum lydium is an unique globular shaped sedum perfect as a dense ground cover in full sun rock gardens and extensive green roofs spreading to 8-12 inches in diameter and 2-4 inches high.  White flowers attracting butterflies and other pollinators emerge in early summer.  Hardy in USDA zones 5-8, this sedum also offers seasonal interest during the cooler months, taking on a bronze to ruby glow around the edges. 




Sedum hybridum 'Czar's Gold'

Jeff Harrison - Tuesday, May 01, 2012

By Kat Harrold

Photo- Kat Harrold

Sedum hybridum 'Czar's Gold' is a hardy evergreen sedum with striking red stems and year round interest.  Gold flowers pop forth in the spring providing food for pollinators.  This sedum does very well on full sun extensive green roofs and has managed to thrive on our full shade test green roofSedum hybridum 'Czar's Gold' is a great ground cover reaching only 6 inches in height and spreading out in masses of up to 8 inches.  Ideal climate for Sedum hybridum 'Czar's Gold' is between USDA zones of 4 to 7. 





Sedum rupestre 'Angelina'

Jeff Harrison - Monday, April 02, 2012
By Kat Harrold

Photo ~ Green Roof Technology

Sedum rupestre 'Angelina' is the perfect green roof plant for a low maintenance extensive green roof with year round interest.  Like the ideal recession employee, this sedum thrives under stressful conditions and in poor dry soils.  This sedum shines its brightest during the winter with bright and cheery displays of gold and red tipped foliage.  Great for ground cover accents, this sedum provides sprawling coverage and creates a dramatic cascading effect in potted arrangements.  This sedum grows to a height of 5 inches with an almost doubled spread of 8 inches.  Sedum rupestre 'Angelina' can be cultivated from cuttings and does well with full sun in zones 6a to 9b.


Jeff Harrison - Friday, March 16, 2012

By Kat Harrold


Photo~ Kat Harrold

Crocus are a wonderful green roof plant for extensive to intensive green roofs.  Bright flowers pop forth in late winter to early spring providing the first signs of the warmer seasons to come.  The general rule of thumb when planting crocus bulbs is to cover the top of the bulb with at least three times as much growing media as the bulb is high.  This said the smaller the bulb the greater you success on a shallow roof.  Crocus are wonderfully low maintenance and love the well drained media of the green roof and will do well in full sun to shade.  For the foodie at heart consider planting the saffron fall blooming crocus.  

Dianthus carthusianorum

Jeff Harrison - Monday, February 27, 2012

By Kat Harrold


Photo by ~ Jorg Breuning

Dianthus carthusianorum is a sun loving drought tolerant plant is sure brighten any green roof from extensive to intensive.  Bright magenta flowers pop forth mimicking small fireworks from July to September.  Slender grass like leaves and wiry stems make this a wonderfully drought tolerant selection.  Dianthus carthusianorum prefers well drained soils and grows in small clumps about 10 inches in diameter in 2 inches high with flower stalks reaching about 10 inches in height.


Sedum kamtschaticum

Jeff Harrison - Tuesday, January 17, 2012

By Kat Harrold


Photo by ~ Jorg Breuning

Sedum kamtschaticum is a hardy evergreen sedum great for extensive to semi-intensive green roofs and will reach up to 6 inches in height.  Star like yellow flowers accent its foliage in the spring and summer providing nourishment for pollinating insects.  This sedum does well in both full sun and is holding as strong as any sedum on our shaded green roof.  Like most green roof plants Sedum kamtschaticum prefers well drained soil with a lite amount of fertilizer during the first few years of establishment.  This sedum is drought tolerant and can be grown from seeds, cuttings, or plugs.    

Sedum spurium 'Fuldaglut'

Jeff Harrison - Monday, October 10, 2011


Photo by ~ Kat Harrold

Sedum spurium 'Fuldaglut' is a very hardy extensive green roof plant that does well in full sun and part shade.  This ornate spreading ground cover has pink flowers in the mid-to late summer and bright red foliage in the cooler months.  From observing our mostly shade green roof this plant is much happier with more sun and does best in the drier areas of the roof.

Sedum album

Jeff Harrison - Thursday, September 29, 2011

By Kat Harrold GRP

Sedum album ~ Kat Harrold GRP

Sedum album is a hardy little sedum that creates a very low growing blanket of little green gems tightly clustered together on an extensive green roof. This is one of your staple sedums for extensive full sun green roofs. This is definitely a less is more kind of plant when it comes to water. Looking out our window at our sample green roof that is in mostly shade, it is not terribly happy in that location but is doing its best at the highest and driest points on the roof.


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