how to make a green roof

How to Make a Green Roof?

The online resource for building small scale green roofs on garden sheds, garages, house extensions and other small construction or retrofitting projects

a green roof on a new house extension

New Builds

A step by step guide to creating a SAFE and LEAK FREE green roof on a new small scale construction project. Learn from the vastly experienced authors how to accomplish it yourself or provide guidance to your contractors

a small green roof on an electrical substation


Even the smallest of roof spaces can provide a small haven of beauty and a wildlife oasis. The retrofitting section advice can be used on garden sheds, cycle & bin shelters, the fundamentals remain the same!

edge details of a garden shed green roof


From suggested screw sizes through edge details to drainage suggestions, John & Dusty take you through the process using text, photos, illustrations and videos

edge details of a garden shed green roof

Planting Ideas

Plant suggestions focussed on native species that can provide the maximum biodiversity. Separate lists for the UK, Eastern USA & Canada, Mid-West USA

What’s in the Guide?

The structure of the DIY guide is very simple.

In essence it is a step by step guide for each stage of building a DIY green roof by:

Retrofitting a green roof on to an existing garden shed.

Retrofitting on an existing extension, garage or other building.

Engaging in a new small build.

Elements covered in detail in the online DIY Green Roof Guide include:

The Roof

  • From the joists up
  • Deck


  • Laying the waterproofing
  • Protecting the waterproofing

Edge Detail

  • a step by step guide to each part of the edge/fascia detail


  • how to ensure good drainage from a green roof.
  • Various approaches are discussed and explained in detail so the constructor can make the appropriate decision to meet their requirements. There are ‘conventions’ in the green roof industry that say that certain methods are standard, but this is not necessarily the case.


  • Guide to how to install irrigation if needed.


  • Choice of growing medium, substrate, soil.
  • The advantages and disadvantages of various materials, systems and approaches


  • Planting options from turfs, blankets, bulbs, seeds, plug plants.
  • National and regional lists.


  • Guidance on maintenance for various treatments.


Guide to building a green roof