Off-topic stray thought I had while on the plane, how complicated would it be to have grass on every flat roof? There are a lot of them, and if it were universal, it seems like that would help. I'm sure there would need to be complicated drainage systems et al, but seems like it would help with insulation (hot/cold.)
Art or Craft?
Not to be rude, I'm new, what denotes Art and what craft.... My"Art" high school took out my subject because it was a craft... Am I still an artist or should I get new business cards?
I was in East Lansing a couple of years ago and a guy had built a 9/11 shrine at the base of an old elm tree in front of his house. The tree was surrounded by little American flags. There were toy fire trucks surrounding cheesy buildings which had cardboard flames attached to them. Little miniature policemen and firemen were scattered all around. It was one of the funniest damn things I have ever seen.
I have a picture of it around here somewhere but I can't seem to find it. When I do, I'll post it. Until then, have a look at this yard...
very nice, in my opinion
What? <ears pricking> Virgin forest felling in Washington?
Sozobe -- Mr. P is interested in Green Roof design (and its "insulation" properties among other things). Here's a link you might be interested in... a conference in Portland about living roof engineering: Green Roof Conference
Greening Rooftops for Sustainable Communities
The 2nd Annual International Green Roof Infrastructure Conference, Awards and Trade Show
June 2-4, 2004 · Portland, Oregon · Hilton Hotel
Oh! It's an actual thing! I thought it was just a fried-brain, too-many-houses, not-enough-sleep stray thought.
Wow, that looks very cool. Good for Mr. Piffka for being involved.
Sozobe -- Not fried-brain at all. Green Roofs are very cool and an idea whose time may have come. Mr.P isn't exactly "involved" but he likes to think about them. I don't know if he'll go to that conference. All the roofs he builds are designed by architects and engineers and built to standard commercial practice. A couple of years ago he was reading about an heir to Ford or someplace (I'd ask him but he's watching Master & Commander) who in taking over whatever operations he'd inherited, made a business decision that he'd "go green." Demanded all his business roofs would be green for sustainable reasons. Mr.P has been following the literature ever since. Cool stuff. 'Course, Scandinavians had grass growing on rural roofs five hundred years ago or so.
5/2003 Popular Science article with a mention of sod roofs
Grass Roofs: In a nod to traditional Scandinavian sod roofs, Tango's elevated greenlands provide added insulation, replenish oxygen and help slow water runoff during heavy storms. Grass surrounds each of the slanted solar panels, and is on other roofs too.
Maybe someday you'll see this in places besides Wisconsin!
It must be hell to mow.
By the way, I really like your photo (craig stone) in the Gallery. Very artistic.
JLN -- I read that they used goats, just like real Scandinavians.
I'm pleased you liked the Craig gravestone; Molly Griest was the sculptor. Some day I'll post a photo of the other side... you'd hardly believe it was the same stone.
Welcome to A2k Witch Hazel!
What denotes art and what denotes craft? Well that is a disctinction for much debate.
So what do you have on your card, artist or craftsman?
Soz and Pif my mother's favorite thing to tell people about herself was that she grew up in a sod house on the plains of Kansas. We, in our past did you grass/sod for roofs in Nebraska and Kansas for many years.
Cool. When I was a kid we would go on field trips to Iowa and see where Laura Ingalls Wilder lived; I forget if it was the original (that seems unlikely) or another, similar one, but the dugout made an impression on me.
When you're in a plane, especially taking off and landing, it's just so depressing how much STUFF there is -- roads, parking lots, roofs (rooves?) -- and I thought it'd transform things if every one of those roofs was covered with grass. I was thinking just the flat ones, but the one in the picture is slanted and seems to work well.
I thought it'd transform things if every one of those roofs was covered with grass.
It would. Great idea, Sozobe.
There is a real sod house (not an original, one made about 30 years ago) in a oldtown tourist attraction near me. I don't think anyone ever actually lived there, but it is really made out of sod. [The city planning department was not impressed at first and told the owners to 'sod off']
In milder climates the structures are not strong enough to support a "green" roof. That's a lot of weight.
In milder climates they can't build strong structures?
On the sod roof picture, I'd be happier to see the parking lot gone and a regular roof.
On tree cutting, I am very particular in my opinions. There are many times that people have planted exotic trees that are wrong for the climate, have hacked trees stupidly in thoughtless "pruning", thus ruining their structure, have planted trees too closely together (this happens in natural circumstances, but is dumb re street trees, as in sycamores 7 feet apart, don't get me started) or way too close to the house. Sometimes trees are naturally short lived and could be replaced with a smarter tree in certain circumstances. For example, we have a client that had some swamp willows that had had added soil - five feet high worth of added soil - put on top of the ground by a developer. After they bought the house, we designed the landscape, taking the soil around the tree back down to natural level and further, taking out about half of the number of thousands of cubic yards dumped on the property, thus mostly restoring the natural drainage. We filled the meadow with many new redwood trees, but, because the clients wanted to save the short lived willows which were already near end stage because they don't want to kill any trees, we had to build various walls for a lot of money to keep that tree clump that will die fairly soon at original grade. (It would have died even faster than usual if it had been left as we found it in the first place). Redwoods would have gone in its place.
I'm citing my reasons for ever chopping down a live tree, though I am very sympathetic to general protection of trees.
Where I live building code is geared around earthquakes, not snow or sod on the roof.
I agree about parking lots/ regular roofs.
Osso, if I may digress a bit more, but only a bit, the house we are in the process of buying has three giant cottonwoods within about 30 feet of each other. We are having an arborist examine them, but any advance/ general comments? (I'm looking at a picture and it looks like the trunks are about 3.5 feet in diameter and the space between them -- not center to center but east end of one trunk and west end of another -- seems to be about 8 feet.) They're giant and very old, so seem to have lasted this long... (They're a concern, though. Don't want big giant cottonwoods that then DIE and go kerplop on our house.)
I don't know a thing about cottonwoods, but I presume they naturally grove well. But the arborist (licensed, right?) should be able to tell you about health and lifespan, for sure, and maybe have cautions about roots, etc.
Re spacing, and street trees (ah, street trees in urban places have tough lives..) in wee planting areas, even if a continuous strip, seven feet is just too close. This happened when a small city group doing its own planting had extra trees...