Brooklyn Green Roof: Plugs or Cuttings?

We are a Brooklyn green roof installer and the question of sedum type comes up a lot. Cuttings, plugs or plants? Most people aren’t interested in seeds: Too complicated and too long to grow.

My preference is cuttings. Fully grown plants are not a consideration for price and other reasons.

Between plugs and cuttings:

1lb of cuttings-30-40 square feet -$12
72 plug tray– 20-24 square feet-  $55

Cuttings are about $0.35 per square foot. Plugs are about $2.50 per square foot. i.e plugs are seven times more expensive.

The other consideration for me is how much water is consumed getting each type to settle. We always want to save water.

Cuttings need about six weeks of water if planted on a Brooklyn roof in the summer. Plugs need less.

BUT plugs have had a lot of water in the nursery. Cuttings havenn’t. So I could be wrong here but my view is that they consume about the same over their earlier life.

So again, I like the cuttings.

The last thing is that the cuttings have been cut from another green roof. There is a spiritual element I like there. They are carrying with them the spirit of another green roof and I like that.

About the author: Gennaro Brooks-Church

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