The Berry Prairie Blog

Native Biodiversity in a Rooftop Landscape


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Aug 30, 2012, 5:33 PM
The past two days have been impressively productive on the green roof. Once the leak monitoring system was check out (see "The Last Leak Test"), the landscape fabric, gravel, irrigation system and growing medium have been put back on, and today the pathway and boulders were reinstalled. Take that Humpty Dumpty!
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Aug 29, 2012, 5:43 PM
The roof passed its first leak test with flying colors (see "Moment of truth") and its second, and its third. These last two were to find leaks in the top membrane, and were, like the first, accomplished by flooding the roof and letting the water stand for at least 24 hours. But—how to tell if there’s a leak in the top membrane when we know there’s none in the bottom? A leak in the bottom membrane would result in water in the collection room (Oh No!), while a leak in the top membrane would only mean water between the membranes. Invisible? Yes. Undetectable? NO!
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Aug 24, 2012, 6:49 PM
In the west, a hold up can have a couple of meanings. Think stage coaches and canvas bags with a big $ on the side. But in the context of the Berry Prairie, it refers to the lack of progress on the green roof this week. The green roof still looks like this (below) largely because everyone is being extra careful to make sure the membrane system is 100% waterproof. A worthy cause for a hold up, most certainly, but still a bit of a rain on the parade.
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Aug 16, 2012, 7:02 PM
Yesterday we took a trip out to the Jacoby Golf Course in Laramie, where the 4,400 plants from the green roof were taken for temporary lodging which the roof is being revamped. Like the rest of the country, Laramie has struggled with drought this summer and keeping the plants alive in a drought, in pots, in an open, exposed area, and in an odd environment in which plants are subjected to random incoming golf balls, is a challenge.
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Aug 14, 2012, 7:11 PM
The green roof's first membrane has been proven waterproof! Hooray! Now the next layers of metal mesh, which is a component of the leak monitoring system, felt and membrane #2 go on. Below you can see that one section of the green roof is receiving its second membrane already.
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Aug 10, 2012, 7:21 PM
The re-roofing of the green roof has made great progress. Over the past week, the roofers have pulled the roof layers apart, dried out the innards, and laid the bottom layers of the roof back on. This morning when I arrived at work, they were "buttoning up" the roof, meaning they were sealing up all of the seams in the bottom waterproof membrane.
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Aug 9, 2012, 7:29 PM
As you may have seen, the Berry Prairie is undergoing a bit of a face lift. Literally! The entire surface of the Prairie has been removed. With approximately 4,300 individual plants and 62 species to account for (not to mention the tons of substrate) how do we make the necessary repairs and maximize the potential for the Prairie to return to the beautiful native landscape we have grown to love? It’s ‘easy’…Methodically, step by step.
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Aug 7, 2012, 7:52 PM
Now that the green roof is pulled up, it gives us a chance to take a look at the multiple layers that lie beneath the gravel and green. Here's a quick peak at a couple of those layers. The orange is the waterproof membrane.

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