April 27 2015

Tips for Starting a Rooftop Garden at Work

Many urban dwellers who are stuck inside all day at their jobs don’t even bother to leave their office during breaks because the outdoors looks just as industrial as the inside of a building. What better way to make your employees really feel like they’re on break than providing them with a garden to relax in? You don’t need a yard and picket fence; rooftop gardens are all the rage now and are perfect for adding some actual foliage to urban jungles.

The first step is taking measurements and developing a plan. Consider how much money you want to spend, and try to envision what you want the space to look like. Make sure to pick out seating that compliments any ornaments and the colors of your plants. Read below for some ideas to help get your garden off the ground.

  • Start out with perennial plants that stay green all year. You can incorporate seasonal flowers, but making perennials the standard bearer ensures that your garden continues to look alive throughout the seasons.
  • Sculptures can provide a good centerpiece to balance the area, and creative lighting can enhance the mood; for example, placing an up-light underneath a sculpture or wall draws attention it and can provide a good focal point.
  • Add sand or white rocks to the soil for heightened contrast against your plants to better accentuate their colors.
  • Check with your building manager to see if you can install a small fountain. The sight and sound of running water is a proven stress reducer.
  • If you’re up for the challenge, try growing some simple herbs and vegetables. Giving employees something to take home every now and then will boost morale, and you can create your own salads for group lunches.
  • Make gardening a group project! Cooperating on a creative project builds teamwork and gives employees a sense of ownership over the space.
  • If you don’t have the time, energy or the green thumb necessary to take care of plants, you can always settle on a rock garden. They require no watering yet still add a touch of nature to modern workplace environments.