6 Tips for Planning Your Rooftop Garden

Rooftop Gardens have gained popularity over the years and become almost essential parts of a home. Apart from the aesthetic benefit, these plants provide food to different animal species, regulate temperature, and provide an architectural boost to a building.

The art of rooftop farming has been practiced over centuries, going back to Roman times, as seen in the Villa of the Mysteries in Pompeii. Apart from planting to enhance the beauty of a home, this art has gained popularity with more people planting edible plants on their homes to use in their kitchens.

If you are looking to start a rooftop garden, here are tips to consider to have a smooth process and a workable environment.

Structural Integrity

Find out if the rooftop can support the garden design and a load of soil and plants. Wet soil combined with growing plants can be pretty heavy; several of these on a weak rooftop may be disastrous. Consult the building engineer and get confirmation that the building can support the weight of a garden. Go ahead and find out if there are permissions you may require to have a rooftop garden.


Before you begin to set up what you need for a rooftop garden, ask yourself if the rooftop is easily accessible. It would be best to determine how you will get supplies on and off the rooftop before and after setting up the garden. Draw a clear plan on how the garden should look, keeping in mind the need for multiple fire exits depending on the residential area regulations.

Types of Plants

Research on the types of plants that can grow on your rooftop well according to the surroundings and climate. A great tip is using plants that are more bottom-heavy than top-heavy to avoid plants getting blown away by the wind. Most evergreens are an excellent selection for this reason and the dry seasons. Talk to a specialist about plants that grow well in the climate of your rooftop and know-how of maintenance.

Planting Material

The type of soil you use to plant your garden is as important as the plants you choose for your garden. Regular garden soil may not be the best option in rooftop gardening. Potting soil works well as it retains water more effectively than garden soil; it is also light in weight. Make raised beds where you don’t require containers, at least 10-inches deep for adequate root growth. For containers, use larger sizes that allow for growth, and that is also sturdy against the weather elements.

Features to be incorporated into the Garden

The functions of a rooftop garden can range from being a garden-only place to a relaxation area. Some additional features like shades, benches, or outdoor seats, will depend on your budget and space. Look into furniture and shades that go well with the plants and do not prevent the plants from getting enough sunlight. Other features like lighting and irrigation systems follow explicit fire code directions for every city.


Every working structure above revolves around the cost of supplies, labor, and maintenance. Ask yourself how much you are willing to put into your dream rooftop garden and how much it will cost to keep it healthy in and out of season. Start with what you can manage, like with small pots and plants, and as you continue developing, the real costs come in. Activities such as tiling, getting more structural support, adding furniture and lighting will start to add to the expenses. The goal here is to work with whichever plan is most comfortable for you.

Finally, have fun planning, structuring, and designing your garden. With these tips, you can go ahead and start your rooftop garden and enjoy the breeze, the birds, and the colorful butterflies that will be attracted to this environmental wonder. Observe maintenance of the garden and effective watering to ensure the plants are healthy and the garden remains beautiful and refreshing.

All opinions expressed on USDR are those of the author and not necessarily those of US Daily Review.