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Additional Resources

For more information regarding the project, contact Living Roofs, Inc. at 828.252.4449 or; Wertimer & Associates Landscape Architects at 843.577.3360 or

Learn about the following companies in the Directory: Sika Sarnafil; Xeroflor GmbH (formerly Low & Bonar); and Living Roofs Inc.

Case Studies

Living Roofs, Inc.


Watch the December 1, 2020 2:08 video Private Kiawah Island – Featured Project from on the greenroofsTV channel on YouTube.


December 1, 2020 Featured Project: Private Kiawah Island, SC Residence by Linda S. Velazquez on

This private residential green roof is located in the marsh sensitive ecology of Kiawah Island in coastal South Carolina. The semi-intensive green roof works not only to visually delineate the union between the building and the surrounding tidal marsh environment but also works to protect the vital buffer zone from harmful storm water. The home-owners enjoy full access to the roof via slate pavers that lead to a wonderful outdoor space overlooking open marshland.

The green roof is a custom built-up system with subsurface irrigation. Waterproofing from Sika Sarnafil and Bonar drain mat were used throughout the green roof ensuring a watertight structure and providing both water retention and drainage. The vegetation is made up of 5 species of grasses including natives such as Muhlenbergia and Nassella. Perennial grasses were chosen in order to create a seamless visual transition from the roof to the marsh below.

Driftwood collected from the surrounding marsh was placed among the grasses providing natural design and habitat for marsh species; the two pieces of marsh cedar were placed to make the roof even more appealing. The green roof was installed in May of 2011 and by the end of the same summer, fiddler crabs were found crawling through the grasses on the roof! See the photo above.

The installation was challenging as space was limited for staging materials and lifting the growing media and pavers to the roof, but the team at Living Roofs Inc (LRI) persevered through hot and muggy Charleston weather to finish yet another successful project.

“Walking among the perennial grasses on the roof is just like meandering through the native marshland at grade.” ~ Living Roofs, Inc.

The Kiawah Island residential living roof will significantly reduce stormwater that would have previously dumped runoff into an important buffer zone just feet away. The design seeks to minimize delineations between the roof structure and the surrounding environment, and Living Roofs Inc. consulted on plant selection to help blend in the marsh view.


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