Green Screen: Exotic Plants Crawl Up Living Exterior Walls


Talk about tree cover – you could almost miss this whole home while walking by on the street, buried as it is under dense layers of climbing greenery that wrap up and around on three of four sides (as well as the roof).

For architects Samyn and Partners and their botanical specialist Patrick Blanc, this project was a complex balance between aesthetics, privacy, and engineering.

It was not simple, for instance, to create a waterproof membrane and the necessary irrigation and fertilization systems to support a heavy coat of plant life.

The foliage curves to enclose more private spaces within the home, including master and children bedrooms and bathrooms. The one open face is left stark and bare, glazed from floor to ceiling with only thin metal supports spanning to carry large sheets of glass.

As illustrated in plan and section, this area contains living and dining rooms as well as a kitchen, all opening toward the outdoors.

Its face looks out to the yard, while the street-side facades give the illusion that the entire building may well be contained within a giant earthen mount covered in a slew of spectacular plant species.

As much as it is architectural, this home takes classic landscape considerations into concern not only along its living surfaces but in terms of the rear garden, paths taken, and views afforded by the configuration of built and natural objects alike.

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