“Change the way we see our cities for­ever”

A greener fu­ture

In the Moment - - Letters -

City liv­ing can be a grey af­fair, but it doesn’t have to be this way. Ital­ian ar­chi­tect Ste­fano Bo­eri is chang­ing the way in which we in­ter­act with ur­ban land­scapes, us­ing them to tackle both en­vi­ron­men­tal is­sues and aes­thet­ics. His lat­est project, The Nan­jing Ver­ti­cal For­est, will be Asia’s rst green sky­scraper. The two neigh­bour­ing tow­ers will be cov­ered in over 2,500 plants, shrubs and trees which will pro­vide 60kg of oxy­gen per day and ab­sorb 25kg of car­bon-diox­ide each year. And that’s not all – this in ux of green­ery will give lo­cal bio­di­ver­sity a boost, re­vers­ing some of the harm­ful ef­fects pol­lu­tion can have on na­tive in­sects and an­i­mals.

Even if you can’t cover your en­tire apart­ment block in trees, you can still recre­ate Bo­eri’s vi­sion at home, reap­ing the health and en­vi­ron­men­tal bene ts with just a few small ad­di­tions. Find­ings from a re­search project by NASA, link­ing poor in­door air qual­ity with a va­ri­ety of health ail­ments, show that just adding one pot­ted plant to a room can pu­rify the air we breathe and re­duce ill­ness and men­tal fa­tigue.

If you’re look­ing to take things a step fur­ther, con­sider cre­at­ing your own hang­ing gar­den for your bal­cony or pa­tio. I Spy DIY (www.ispy­diy.com) has cre­ated a sim­ple tu­to­rial, show­ing you how to make a ver­ti­cal wooden planter for herbs and shrubs that can be adapted to suit any out­door space.

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