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Recover Green Roofs

Project Breakdown: SUNY ESF

SUNY ESF- Syracuse, NY 

We had a crew of six people for the intensive green roof installation on top of the new LEED Platinum Gateway Building. The green roof was planted with native species that are part of the alvar plant community. SUNY ESF professors and students are replicating the alvar microclimate; an example of using natural plant communities as a green roof template. The green roof will act as an outdoor classroom in addition to mitigating storm water run-off and reducing the building’s heating and cooling costs.

The alvar community plants were grown in Ithaca, NY by Motherplants LTD. We were fortunate to also have great manual help from Highview Creations, a green roof company based out of Brooklyn, NY.


Plants were transported manually from the Motherplants truck to the roof of the new building.  The growing medium was conveyed to the roof via blower truck (below right).


Once all of the 3,000 plants made it to the roof, we assessed the blueprint which was designed by the collaborative efforts of Motherplants, Recover, and SUNY ESF professors. The growing medium was covered by Jute Mat (below left) for erosion control. This was the only hindrance in the installation as it forced us to work slowly and carefully around it. It will play an important role in keeping plants moist and safe from high winds.


After two days of successful planting, we gave the plants a good soak. We’ll be back in the spring to check up on it and anticipate a high survival rate over the winter.


Update to come in Spring 2013.

For more specific details on the project, please visit our Portfolio Page.


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