Lanzarote's bilingual magazine

Living tapestries

The fresh colourful feel of a vertical garden offers endless possibilities to give life to interiors

Key to interior design is knowing how to play with different spaces, and vertical gardens have been a firm favourite trending in many homes, shops, restaurants and offices in recent years.

In addition to being a resource for sustainable architecture, a vertical garden brings beauty and oxygen into a space whilst also providing thermal and acoustic insulation. It also generates an air of peace and tranquillity you’d normally associate with being out in the fresh air, enjoying nature.

Vertical gardens come in various designs and in this case, size does matter. The simplest are modular systems which are ideal for small gardens (up to 15 m2). They are easy to install and maintain and, in short, more affordable. The most common designs on the market have a geotextile fabric which basically consists of a layer of fabric with built-in pockets (filled with substrate) where the plants are placed. They just need a traditional drip irrigation system and should be fertilised and cared for as if they were in pots. The fabric can be cut and used on different surfaces, so it is easy to tailor to the size and location you need.

A more dynamic option is the Puzzle (modular) system, with rounded supports for small pots, which can be changed depending on your preferences and needs. As they generate moisture, they should be anchored to an insulating backing like 1 cm thick foamed PVC, cork, or a thin tarpaulin.

For sheer versatility, you can’t beat mobile vertical gardens which consist of a firm structure (usually polypropylene) onto which several planters or rack modules with substrate are fitted. As they are on wheels, they can be moved with ease and make effective space dividers.

Hydroponic vertical gardens are ideal for large areas but need to be designed and installed by professionals, they do, however, give the most amazingly realistic results. The plants’ roots are intertwined, allowing them to live together harmoniously (after an informed selection process) thanks to positive allelopathy. The result is your very own vertical plant ecosystem.

Unlike modular systems, which need traditional soil and water, hydroponic vertical gardens feed the plants by fertigation, a combination of fertilisation and irrigation which makes for an extremely precise and efficient delivery system.

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