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Substrate depth and roof age strongly affect plant abundances on sedum-moss and
meadow green roofs in Helsinki, Finland Ecological Engineering-lehdessä, 86 (2016) 95–104
Kirjoittajina tutkijat Malgorzata Gabrych, D. Johan Kotze ja Susanna Lehvävirta
Kiitos myös kiitoksistanne. On ollut ilo tehdä kanssanne yhteistyötä.
We thank HENVI, University of Helsinki and Kone Foundationfor funding this research, and the University of Helsinki and LUOMUS for providing all facilities, equipment and space. Green roof companies ENVIRE VRJ Group and EG Trading OY shared essential information.
We would also like to thank all building ownersand people in charge for arranging access to green roofs during theinventory.
We would like to emphasize our gratitude to the following persons for their practical and essential input to this research: Marja Mesimäki, Taina Suonio, Minna Halonen, Kirsi Kuoppamäki, Lauri Sillantie, Heino Vänskä, Henry Väre, Johannes Enroth and Ferenc Vilisics.
Green (i.e. vegetated) roofs are an increasingly popular measure to improve climate regulation in residential areas. However, there is limited knowledge on the effect of green roof characteristics (e.g. substrate depth and roof age, size and height), especially in northern climates, on plant species composition of the roofs, even though roof performance is mediated through the plants. We hypothesized that substrate depth and roof age, size and height shape the vegetation on green roofs. We inventoried vegetation on 51 green roofs in the metropolitan area of Helsinki in 2011 and found 230 plant species, of which seven are red-listed. We showed that substrate depth and roof age were predominant in structuring plant communities on green roofs. Thin substrates and young roofs maintained sedum and moss species, while thick substrates and older green roofs supported meadow plants. Roof size and height had variable effects on the vegetation. Our results provide knowledge on the dependence of plant species on roof parameters, which is useful in the planning for particular vegetation on roofs taking into account, e.g. load capacity and substrate depth, the wanted functional properties of the roof, and maintenance.