Homes that have their walls covered by ivy can be more energy efficient than ‘bare’ buildings.
That’s one of the findings of a report from the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS) and the University of Reading, which suggests the plant species can reduce the air temperature internally and externally by up to 7.2°C, during the summer.
Published in the Building and Environment journal, the paper investigated the impact of green facades on cooling buildings.
Researchers also found that during winter, the relative humidity of ivy-clad walls was 5.7% lower inside the building compared to those without the plant.
Dr Tijana Blanusa, RHS Principal Horticultural Scientist, said: “Our research is an important step forward in growing our understanding of green walls.
“Many people with limited space are turning towards vertical gardening as a way of greening their homes or workplaces. We are encouraged by the findings that all the plants tested provide summer cooling benefits without causing humidity issues.”