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www.greenbuildermag.com 08.2012


~ How-to ~ 14 BUILD A GREEN ROOF Although many kit systems and components


are readily available, it’s also possible to build your fi rst green roof with off -the-shelf materials.


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LMOST EVERYONE HAS heard about green roofs, but from what we’ve seen, it’s usually show homes and commercial properties that actually go the distance and put in a green


roof. In Germany, 40% of new roofs being built are veg- etative, compared with .25% here in the U.S. One ob- stacle is the perceived price. Another is lack of familiarity. That’s why we decided to run this DIY-style piece—to introduce you to the basic concepts of a garden roof. If you start small, as the author did on this small addi- tion, you might fi nd the perfect place for a green roof in your next project—and delight your clients with a garden patio or second-story deck that changes with the seasons.


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Engineer for strength. Refer to your local building codes for help planning the frame of your green roof. The UK-based author used a dead load of 150 kg per sq. meter as his guideline.


Brace as needed. Because this roof is an overhang with unfi nished underside, the 2”x6” dimensional joists required blocking for additional strength. The author bolted and glued the joists together to increase span strength.


Deck it out. As a fi rst step, the author put down a conventional plywood roof deck, covered with felt and taped at the seams. This felt layer may not be necessary, depending on your local codes, but it does provide a waterproof backup in case later layers fail.


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