Forum: Arts / Crafts & Hobbies

my living wall experiment (karma: 1)
By panicmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Fri Jul 15, 2011 03:23 PM
Edited by panic (116436) on 2011-07-15 15:25:46 I added stuff. Duh.

This is my first try at making a living wall. I just used materials and plants I had lying around, so I'm sure some of the plants will need to be replaced. And I decided to use sponges instead of dirt - which may or may not work. Has anyone else tried something like this? I actually looked around to see if I could buy something similar, but the prices were OUTRAGEOUS!

edit: Obvi, it's not finished yet. I didn't think I had to mention that, but one never knows, does one?

14 Replies to my living wall experiment

re: my living wall experiment
By ChristinePremium member
On Sat Jul 16, 2011 07:25 PM
I've used Sphagnum moss for baskets and the roots of the plants do grow into the moss fibers, so I suppose the sponges will work the same way. Depending on the plants though, it may be a limited medium. You still need the nutrients from the soil. I don't know the nutritional value of natural sponges, but given the cost, I assume you are using cellulose? I would assume that a good plant food, properly diluted, should help.

What kind of light source do you have? The availability of sunlight may be more significant to the plants than soil.

The pictures look great. Do you have access to any Bromeliad Tillandsia or similar "air plants"? Spanish Moss might be an easy addition as well, if you have enough humidity (which I assume is no problem in FL)

Please keep up updated on your wall. It is really STUNNING!

Keep On Dancing*
re: my living wall experiment
By hummingbird
On Sat Jul 16, 2011 09:00 PM
Sphagnum moss is not ecological choice because of the length of time it takes to grow and the way it's harvested.

I thought that the sponges were mosaic tiles to start off with :)

I'm off to get my eyes tested having looked closer.

I agree with you about the dirt, it would be very heavy with water in it too.

I'm watching this one with interest seeing as I'd like to do something similar when/if I get the time.

It looks really good for an unfinished project.

What plants have you used so far? Have you tried House Leeks, Sempervivum? They should work well.
re: my living wall experiment
By panicmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Sun Jul 17, 2011 10:19 PM
All the plants were just clippings I had lying around. I didn't put any money or forethought into this project. But I used rosemary in the top-left (which will probably not root but still looks incredibly good), spanish moss on the bottom-right, fancy pink purslane on top, common yellow purslane on the bottom, and the rest is just a few random succulents I've had for a few years.

I've heard Sempervivum is perfect for this kind of project but I haven't seen any lately. I'm going to buy some next time I see it.

It's a real pain to get all the doo-dads attached to the grid, but I'm pretty sure everything except the rosemary will be ok on the sponge. Purslane grows on bare rock, so at the very least,that should work.
re: my living wall experiment
By hummingbird
On Sun Jul 17, 2011 10:28 PM
Shame you're not closer I have tonnes of it going crazy in my garden at the moment, they seem to thrive on -40 up to +40, I think it's the dry atmosphere we get here.

I wonder if Thyme would do well? It's a bit less woody than rosemary and I always found that cuttings rooted easily.
re: my living wall experiment
By panicmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Sun Jul 17, 2011 11:00 PM
I was just wondering the same thing about thyme. I didn't know it was drought tolerant until recently. And yeah, I know it roots like crazy. I really don't want to water this thing every day though.
re: my living wall experiment
By Liritmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Mon Jul 18, 2011 03:07 AM
I have wanted to do something like this forever but never took the plunge. I can't wait to see how things come along.
re: my living wall experiment
By Chaconnemember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Mon Jul 18, 2011 11:27 AM
I don't have a clue how it works, but I remember being at Epcot at Disney World and they were growing vegetables and other stuff by a means called hypoponics (I think that's the word.) Anyone know anything about it?

Jon
re: my living wall experiment
By Mendelmember has saluted, click to view salute photos
On Mon Jul 18, 2011 06:57 PM
^ I don't really know anything about it, but perhaps you're thinking of hydroponics ? The brother of one of my friends worked for a hydroponics company a long time ago, which is why the term rang a bell with me. Hope this is what you're looking for.
re: my living wall experiment
By ChristinePremium member
On Mon Jul 18, 2011 10:16 PM
Stag Horn Ferns would be an ideal choice. In nature they grow on the sides of trees and don't really require soil.

You might also have good luck with plain old spider plants (Chlorophytum) which are usually available in several different varieties. Their roots are tuberous, they enjoy being root bound, and usually throw off spiders (baby plants) when root bound. The spiders don't need soil or a planting medium as long as they are attached to the mother plant. Pilea depressa and Sedums all have rather shallow roots that kind of bristle out and grab onto what ever it can find. I bet these groups would also work well, and they are a bit more succulent than baby tears so they won't need water as often.

Keep On Dancing*
re: my living wall experiment
By Chaconnemember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Tue Jul 19, 2011 11:14 AM
^^ Yup Mandel, that's it. I checked it out on a Disney Web site after you mentioned it. LOL, It was 25 years ago we saw it. I was just at Epcot last month, but we missed that building. My wife and I can't do all the buildings in a single day like we used to LOL. I have to go to Florida every year (Mom lives there) and our timeshare is right across the highway from Disney World...so I'll check it out next year.

Jon
re: my living wall experiment
By panicmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Tue Jul 19, 2011 01:37 PM
That pavilion was called "The Land". I think the hydroponics ride was called "Living With The Land"? When I was on a field trip in jr high, our guide fell off our boat and into the water.

Kitchen Kabaret was also in that same building. www.youtube.com . . .
veggie FRUIT FRUIT veggie veggie FRUIT FRUIT
re: my living wall experiment
By hummingbird
On Tue Jul 19, 2011 02:41 PM
I didn't think that It's a Small World could be beaten as the worst thing in Disney Land/ World /Euro Disney or what ever they call each branch but I think that's in the running with it panic.
re: my living wall experiment
By Celebrianmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Sun Aug 14, 2011 05:52 PM
Happy Living Wall, dude. Makes me think of the hanging gardens of Babylon.

Anywho, hope you put up pictures as it progresses.
re: my living wall experiment
By panicmember has saluted, click to view salute photosPremium member
On Sun Aug 14, 2011 06:05 PM
This version was a flop, but I think it'll work with a few modifications. I just constructed try #2 last weekend, so we'll see how well that goes. I'm also trying a table-top version that REALLY seems to be growing well. I hope to make a ton of them to give as Christmas presents. There isn't really anything to see yet, but I'll post details and pictures once I know more.

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