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    39 Insanely Cool Vertical Gardens

    Welcome to the green future. These aren't your grandmother's window boxes.

    1. Bosco Verticale


    This rendering by architect Stefano Boeri features the first urban vertical forest, Bosco Verticale in Milan.

    The pair of apartment skyscrapers are built to sustain the equivalent of 2.5 acres of forest extending towards the sky.

    The soon-to-be-completed towers feature cantilevered balconies, wind and solar systems, and greywater recycling systems that irrigate the 5,000 shrubs, 480 big and medium size trees, 250 small size trees, and 11,000 ground-cover plants chosen for the project.

    2. The "Tower Flower"

    Paul Raftery

    The "Tower Flower," designed and built by architect Edouard Francois in Paris's 17th arrondissement, contains 380 giant concrete flower pots embedded in each of the apartment building's balconies.

    3. A (literal) Tower of Flowers

    4. The Stairscraper: "A Desert Green"


    The "Stairscraper" was a winning design by Barcelona-based architect Nabito in the Total Housing Competition. The "horizontal landscape city," reportedly scheduled for completion in Abu Dhabi in 2015, will allow each apartment to have its own balcony and roof garden.

    5. Living Wall at the Birmingham NEC


    This wall at the LG Arena in Birmingham features a "compost modular system" built into a steel sub structure. Check out the full project gallery created by the UK's "preeminent supplier of Living Walls."

    6. Living Wall at Westfield Shopping Centre


    This living wall in Shepherds Bush is the largest "Living Wall" in Europe. It features a fully automatic zoned irrigation and rainwater harvesting system.

    7. Cascading Water Garden


    A private London residence designed by Biotecture Ltd. and maintained by Scotscape

    8. Edgware Road Installation


    This living wall at Edgware Road tube station is an experimental installation measuring how efficiently such walls reduce PM10s (particulate matter) from the atmosphere, which is a respiratory hazard.

    9. Hydroponic Interior Wall


    Designed by Biotecture Ltd. for an office in Norway

    10. Phyto Universe


    The Phyto Universe hair-care center on Lexington Avenue was New York's first vertical garden. Created in 2006 by Patrick Blanc, a scientist from the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique and Engineer Laurent Corradi, the garden covers 2,900 square feet and includes 9,000 species.

    11. Le Mur Vegetal at the Musée du quai Branly


    Le Mur Vegetal (or "Vertical Garden") by Patrick Blanc in Paris. Blanc is known as the father of the vertical garden, through which he combines artistry and botany to accomplish astonishing transformations of urban spaces.

    12. The Pont Max Juvénal Overpass


    Designed by Patrick Blanc in Aix-en-Provence, France (2008)

    For contrast...

    13. Madrid Caixa Forum


    This Patrick Blanc-designed vertical garden on an exterior wall of a former power station features 15,000 plants and 250 different species.

    14. Living Walls in the Netherlands


    These living walls (also designed by Patrick Blanc) are covered in felt and rock wool, which helps irrigate the embedded plant life.

    15. Recycled Bottle Herb Garden


    Recycled bottles filled with soil and herbs provide a functional herb garden at a family home in Sao Paulo.

    Designed by Rosenbaum.

    16. Hanging Desert Garden


    At the organic medicinal herb farm Rio Abajo RIo, in Abiquiu, New Mexico.

    17. Modular Tetris Garden


    Modular garden tiles produced by Spanish company Ceracasa can be configured in an infinite number of patterns.

    18. Chimney Garden


    Designed by Mike Weinmaster at a luxury condo building in Vancouver.

    19. A Sears Swathed in Green


    Designed by Mike Weinmaster in Vancouver.

    20. The Semiahmoo Library

    Designed by Mike Weinmaster in Surrey.

    21. An Alternative "Greenhouse"


    Unlike traditional "greenhouses," these houses are covered by (rather than filled with) plant life.



    A contemporary private residence was designed by the Belgian architects Samyn and Partners and their botanical specialist, Patrick White.

    23. "Green Cast" Plantered Façade


    This Japanese structure designed by Kengo Kuma and Associates is covered in slanted planters made out of aluminum cast from decayed styrene foam.

    24. Villa Cascais


    A vertical garden designed by landscape architecture firm Proap at a villa in Lisbon, Portugal.

    25. Florafelt Pocket Garden


    Constructed using the florafelt planters produced by "Plants On Walls"

    26. Singaporean Office Garden


    An award-winning interior garden created by Tierra Design / POD for a building in Singapore's Central Business District.

    27. Succulent Collages




    31. A Patio of Pots

    32. Vertical Veggie Garden

    33. Evergreen Indoor Herb Garden

    34. Ascending Hotel Horticulture

    35. San Vicente de Raspeig Children's Library


    Designed by architect Jose Maria Chofre

    36. "Gardens by the Bay"


    Created by Wilkinson Eyre Architects for the National Parks Board of Singapore

    37. The "Urban Cactus"


    The Urban Cactus is an architectural project in Rotterdam created by UCX Architects, and includes 98 residential units on 19 floors with staggered balcony gardens.

    38. Aquapura Hotel


    Designed by Rebelo de Andrade in Lisbon, Portugal.

    39. Gravity-Defying Bike Path

    Via Flickr: kenmccown

    An exterior wall at a restaurant in Mexico City.