You’re still in time to catch the Valletta Green Festival this weekend! Every year since 2015, this festival has transformed the heart of Malta’s capital city with a sea of colourful, fragrant flowers and a packed programme of family-friendly activities.

This year’s edition of the Valletta Green Festival was an especially momentous one, marking not only the capital city’s 450th anniversary, but also Valletta’s year as European Capital of Culture. Plus, with some 150,000 potted plants creating an actual garden in Pjazza San Gorg, and ancient secret gardens being opened to the public for the first time in centuries, the 2018 festival was bigger than ever.

Whilst so much greenery adorning the capital city is truly a sight to behold, the Festival is not just all about that – it also aims to inspire local residents to start developing green areas in their own hometowns.

To do this, the Valletta Green Festival has set up a roof garden on top of the Main Guard, which is open to the public until 13th May. Here’s just a few of the reasons you should consider raising the (green) roof at your home, and how a visit to the Valletta Green Festival roof garden can help.

It ‘greens up’ the landscape

Malta’s rich history has provided plenty of gorgeous buildings and architecture, but that hasn’t left a lot of room for greenery. Green roofs, in a key trend that’s currently sweeping Europe, promise to change all that, by bringing the green back to urban landscapes.

You’ll just feel better

Research studies have shown that hospital patients with natural views may be discharged sooner, requiring less medical attention and even medication. A roof garden can improve your mood, calm your mind and possibly even improve your health, providing a serene and natural private haven to which you can escape from the rush of daily life. Speaking of feeling better – why not consider home-grown fruits and vegetables in your roof garden plot?

Beat pollution

If there’s one thing green areas in urban environments are really needed for, it’s to help balance pollution levels. By definition, plants improve air quality, creating less smog by cooling their surrounding areas and trapping dust particles in the air on their leaves. So by adding a roof garden, you’re contributing to cleaner air in your hometown. And, breathe.

Natural climate control

A key benefit of having a roof garden is that it provides natural insulation for your home, meaning that it will lower temperatures inside during the heat of the Maltese summer, and add a layer of insulation when the weather turns chilly outside. You’ll also be reducing energy emissions, as well as your electricity bill, by reducing the need to electrically heat or cool your home. How’s that for a win-win?

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To learn more about the benefits of setting up a roof garden, visit the roof garden set up at the Main Guard until 13th May as part of the Valletta Green Festival. At ground level, the Valletta Design Cluster have a stand that displays the 3D design of the Main Guard Roof Garden, and there are experts to offer green-fingered guidance to those interested in greening up.

For more info, visit the Valletta Green Festival website.