The Welcome Shelter at Denmark Farm was built just over a year ago (see blogpost from August 2013) and we always intended to create some sort of living wall on the south end.
With several false starts over the recent summer we have now finally begun to plant up the wall.
The underlying structure is a framework of sawn timber boxes lined with a waterproof membrane to prevent damp penetrating through to the inside wall. A permeable membrane was stretched across the whole surface area and fixed with staples and wooden batons. Further wooden batons were added to create smaller planting pockets. The top of each ‘pocket’ was carefully cut open to be able to fill with compost and water (if required). Finally once the compost was well watered and settled, we cut small crosses in the outside membrane and delicately fed the roots of small cuttings through.
So far we have chosen plants which are tough, drought resistant and grow freely in and around Denmark Farm. We have several succulents and some wild strawberries which should trail down, root and spread around the wall. The aim is to have flowers for pollinators as well as a little surprise food for passing humans.
We hope the living wall will ultimately compliment and echo the green roofs on our Eco Lodge and Roundhouse which are now well established and providing nectar and habitats for many creatures at Denmark Farm.
If you’d like to get involved with projects like this one and help provide habitats for wildlife please do join us at one of our volunteer days.
Please note that this design is a complete experiment and may need to be adapted and tweaked. It is very much a work in progress and we’ll keep you updated with progress.