written by:
September 26, 2012

From the United States to Poland to South Korea, living roofs have taken off. They provide natural insulation, help control with runoff, and pack a slew of cool features—it's no wonder these building canopies have gained popularity. We've gathered some of the most interesting and unexpected green roofs planted with everything from sod to succulents here for your viewing pleasure.
 

Modern sod roof
In southwest Poland, architect Robert Konieczny, of KWK Promes, raises the roof—with sod intact—on Jacek Perkowski’s modernist rural getaway. Konieczny lifted the existing ground and wrapped it around the roof and exterior rooftop staircase, essentially making all floors “ground” level.
Originally appeared in Modernist Rural Getaway in Poland
1 / 11
Backyard of 2 Bar House in Menlo Park
Lauren Schneider of Wonderland Garden planted the living roof on this modern home in Menlo Park, California, with succulents, aloe, viviums, and ice plants that flower in swathes of white and purple. "In this project, we got so much benefit out of this "secret garden" for the master suite along with all of these environmental benefits that the residents were excited to embrace. It's one of the pieces we are happiest about," says architect Jonathan Feldman.
Originally appeared in Bar Method
2 / 11
Green roof on modern house in Washington, DC
Eliza Pink takes in the view from her perch atop the green roof atop a Washington, DC, home, which resident Daniel Pink believes to be the first of its kind in the neighborhood. The family received a subsidy administered by DC Greenworks and funded by the DC Department of the Environment.
Photo by 
Courtesy of 
© 2012 Eli Meir Kaplan Photography
Originally appeared in Modern Bright Family Home Renovation in Washington, DC
3 / 11
The deck, fashioned from ipe, was built around one of the property’s many granite outcroppings. An earthen roof was planted with the same varieties of sedum that were added to the front of the cottage.
The ipe deck surrounding this Guilford, Connecticut, cottage was built around one of the property’s many granite outcroppings. An earthen roof was planted with the same varieties of sedum that were added to the front of the cottage. Read more: http://www.dwell.com/slideshows/light-motif.html?slide=3&c=y&paused=true#ixzz26xuNycm7
Photo by 
Originally appeared in Striking Angular Cottage in Connecticut
4 / 11
Jon Ahrens of <a href="http://madroneldc.com/">Madrone Landscaping</a>, who layed out the plantings around the container, implemented a green roof on a drip watering system. The cantilevered overhang at rear is planted with cacti.
Though this Texas garden retreat and guesthouse is only 8' x 40', it features all the comforts of a larger house: floor-to-ceiling glass doors and windows, heating and air-conditioning, a green roof, bamboo flooring and wallcoverings, a small sink and shower, and a composting toilet.“The green roof was an element that I had not thought of at the beginning, but as it turns out saves me more money on air-conditioning than the solar would have, and is a lot prettier,” says the resident. See more shipping container homes here.
Photo by 
Originally appeared in Smaller in Texas
5 / 11
E+ Green Home in Seoul, South Korea
The E+ Green Home, a concept house located an hour outside Seoul, not only points the way to a greener South Korea, it may well be the most sustainable house in the country. Read more: http://www.dwell.com/slideshows/E-for-Effort.html?slide=1&c=y&paused=true#ixzz26xvWPsS7
Photo by 
Originally appeared in Modern Green Concept House in South Korea
6 / 11
Solar energy backyard
The Damianos’ modern green home, designed by Boulder-based Tres Birds Workshop and located in Denver’s Highland neighborhood, runs completely on solar energy. On all three aboveground levels of the house, outdoor spaces feature as prominently as indoor ones. The backyard is lined with tiered concrete boxes for planting vegetables; the modest top floor­—which houses the master bedroom—has a deck wrapping three sides; and in the middle, a 770-square-foot green roof extends off the living area.
Originally appeared in Denver's Energy Efficient Home
7 / 11
Project: Vancouver Convention Centre West<p></p>Location: Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada<p></p>Developer: BC Pavilion Corporation<p></p>2010 ULI Award for Excellence: The Americas nomination: "Knitted into the urban fabric of Vancouver’s downtown cor
The American nomination for the 2010 Urban Land Institute's Award of Excellence, the 1.2-million-square-foot Vancouver Convention Center West establishes an important link in the city’s park system, connecting to the existing harbor greenbelt with a major civic plaza and a six-acre living roof—one of the largest in Canada.
Originally appeared in Urban Land Institute 2010 Awards
8 / 11
Playroom view of row house
From the leafy sidewalk outside Paul Bernier and Joëlle Thibault’s home in the Plateau Mont-Royal neighborhood of Montreal, there’s no clue that their brick home is all that different from its neighbors. In the backyard, however, a small single-story addition to the row house adds a playroom without eating up too much outdoor space. A green roof also helps makes up for lost garden beds, while creating attractive, leafy views from the second and third floors. In the summer, when the sliding doors are left wide open, indoor and outdoor spaces blend together.
Photo by 
Originally appeared in Separate Boîte Equal
9 / 11
Architect Mary Ann Schicketanz of Carver + Schicketanz Architects created a 1,900-square-foot home in Big Sur, California, that hugs its hillside site.
Photo by 
Originally appeared in Going Coastal
10 / 11
Modern chicken coop box roof garden
Switching coasts from Brooklyn to Portland gave architects Mitchell Snyder and Shelley Martin a new set of unexpected clients: three young hens. Snyder finished the sleek-looking coop with reclaimed cedar siding and ventilated it with two upper windows. On top, he added a green roof: "The living roof helps keep the coop cool, but mostly it was a chance to experiment and design something fun."
Photo by 
Originally appeared in Coop Dreams
11 / 11
Modern sod roof
In southwest Poland, architect Robert Konieczny, of KWK Promes, raises the roof—with sod intact—on Jacek Perkowski’s modernist rural getaway. Konieczny lifted the existing ground and wrapped it around the roof and exterior rooftop staircase, essentially making all floors “ground” level.

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