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Sunday May 09 , 2021

Blue Daisy Blog

Blue Daisy blog written by Nicki Jackson & Jules Clark - for news, views, garden design, gardening and plant observations and thoughts.

The green roofed buses of Spain

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I was reading an article in ProLandscaper the other week about the new eco-friendly bus roof top garden that has been designed by Marc Granen.  Aiming to absorb harmful CO2 and O2 emissions in Spain’s choked cities I’m generally loving the idea for its quirky but practical solution. The system, dubbed PhytoKinetic, uses a lightweight hydroponic foam that retains humidity but not water which should reduce the weight of the gardens in rainy periods and for those long hot Spanish seasons the garden is watered via the condensation generated by the bus’s air con system.  The hotter the weather, the more the air con is used and the more water the garden will get which, of course, is also when it needs it most.

I don’t know the full facts of this solution and while I love the idea my initial reservation revolves around the weight of the garden, even with its lightweight hydroponic foam solution.  I assume it will require more fuel use for the busses which could negate its green credentials but there are also non-green payoffs to be had too.  Mr Granen talks of the busses becoming tourist attractions themselves and there’s also a possibility of adding an extra layer to bus line branding – can you imagine all of Coventry and Warwickshire busses for instance all carrying the same (potentially iconic) planting schemes on all of its busses while Birmingham busses carry a different, as equally iconic scheme on theirs?  For its quirky possibilities and practical payoffs I love this idea and turning spaces that already exist into more greenery is never a bad thing in my eyes.  

roofgardens1I regret that our ever increasing need for urbanisation always seems to be at the expense of our green spaces and hope that we can improve how we incorporate greenery into our urban landscapes more effectively.  If parkland and ‘space’ continues to diminish it’s important that we make the most of what little space will be left and I for one, would love to see us becoming ever more creative with a more systematic adoption of roof and vertical gardening globally than is currently being evidenced.


Nicki Jackson is Blue Daisy's garden designer & owner. A former HR consultant Nicki still finds the time to run Blue Daisy, design gardens and planting plans, write a blog, keep our gardening clients happy and offer IIP advice and outplacement support through Blue Daisy Consultancy.

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