Materials and Plants Research

Green Roofs Tree of Knowledge | Materials and Plants Research

Publication Information

Title: Where Beetles are crawling and Honeybees are humming
Author Surname: Breuning
Author Firstname: Jörg
Author(s) affiliation: Green Roof Service LLC
Journal/Conference/etc.: Sixth Annual Greening Rooftops for Sustainable Communities Conference, Awards and Trade Show
Date of publication: 30-APR-2008
On pages/Number of pages: NA
Publisher: NA



The terms “extensive” and “intensive green roofs” are based on the plants these systems support and the degree of maintenance they require. Depending on plant species and varieties used, green roofs can also support a diversity of fauna. Dr. Gunter Mann, born 1967 in Horb near Stuttgart, Germany, studied biology at the University of Tübingen (founded in 1477) and has been in Research and Development for Optigreen Germany since 1992. In 1993, Dr. Mann began the world’s first research program studying wildlife use on various types of green roofs. This research is ongoing and has uncovered an astonishing diversity of fauna on green roofs, including the usual suspects like butterflies, ladybugs, ground-nesting birds and spiders, but also snails, worms, and many families of insects. It is an honour to summarize this research, and we hope to motivate people across Canada and the US to pursue similar research on green roofs that are older than 5 years.


Purpose of Research

This study explores the importance of green roofs in supporting and creating a diversity of fauna. It also considers the relationship between this fauna and the type of green roof used.


Research Conditions

Type of green roof studied: Mixed
Size or range of sizes of green roofs studied (square feet): 5000 ft2; 6000ft2; 1000ft2 (Total of 125 sites = 1/2million ft2)
Type of construction:
City or cities: Sindelfingen/ Böblingen
States or Provinces:
Country or countries: Germany (Near Stuttgart)
Plant Type:
Growing medium depth or range of depths (inches): Varies (4 - 10inches)
Research period:  
Other conditions of research:


Fauna was quantified over many differing sites at varying intervals and time-scales. On the first 4 sites species were quantified from 6 April 1993 until 21 September 1993. On the remaining sites observations were more sporadic but spread over a longer period.



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Summary Information

Summary prepared by: Stuart Beesley
Date: 26-JAN-2010
Additional notes:  

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