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VISIT & explore

Green roof

The Morton Arboretum's green roof, on a portion of the Visitor Center's rooftop, demonstrates a commitment to improving energy efficiency, reducing the carbon footprint, and beautifying the world. The green roof is not accessible for public viewing but is utilized for growing herbs for use by the Ginkgo Restaurant.

Why plant a roof?

  • Reduce heating and cooling needs
  • Cut down on heat radiation
  • Extend the life of the roof itself
  • Reduce storm water runoff


High tech, low impact

Special engineering makes it all work. A six-inch soil substrate supplies the needed plant growing material, while layers of mineral compounds and foam provide drainage and filtering. Roof drains and a rubber membrane prevent water from seeping into the building, and a modified weight system keeps the building structurally sound.