1. What type of Vertical Garden do you want- an aesthetic focal point, food producing, camouflaging, insulating? All of these?
2. What is the climate like around your site- sunny, exposed, windy, heavy rainfall?
3. Does another building cast a ‘shadow’ over your ‘garden’ wall? If so, plant choice is critical.
4. How many hours of natural sunlight a day will your intended greenwall receive?
5. Is your wall/fence sound enough to carry a mounted greenwall system or do you need a freestanding one?
6. Can you cater for drainage or excess ‘run off’ after a heavy downpour?
7. What visual ‘look’ do you seek from the wall? Free form with leaf movement in a breeze, tight and geometrically patterned? Mixed foliage, colourful flowers or veggies and herbs?
8. If you choose a mounted hydroponic system, have you allowed for the battens, wallboard and many felt layers behind the plants or other ‘extras’ required for successful performance of this type of greenwall system?
9. Where will the reservoir and pump be located for the hydroponic systems?
10. Is maintenance for the vertical garden system complex/costly and will your electricity bill soar?
Choose the type of Greenwall system first by researching soil- based versus hydroponic systems THEN once you have decided which vertical garden system suits your needs and lifestyle best, consult a reliable professional or wise guy at your local nursery to help in selecting the right plants.
A vertical garden or greenwall should give more than it takes – it should be:
· Stunning to look at and/or productive through all the seasons of the year so that it can feed your senses and you can enjoy it’s abundant lushness and delicious benefits
· As low maintenance as possible for self – management OR if a large scale, commercial installation, only incur ongoing fees from a professional as necessary
· Accessible enough to enable you to replace plants, fertilise and tip prune maybe twice a year
· Dense with plants who ‘get on well together’ as far as size and maximum growth go so there is no fighting for dominance or survival
· Designed with plants grouped according to their love of the same servings of food and drink and quality of light exposure
· Easily relocatable should you wish to take it with you when you move