Learning from Green Roofs A Bronx School's Lesson in Saving Energy

The rooftop at St. Simon Stock Catholic School on East 182nd Street in the Bronx, New York is a lone patch of green in the quilt of gray, beige and black that stretches across the southeast Bronx. Six inches of a patented, lightweight growing medium called Gaia Soil covers 3,500 square feet, divided into plots for both elementary and graduate school research. The roof hosts 20 native species: delicate columbine flowers, milkweed that attracts migrating Monarch butterflies, tomato and cucumber plants, and black-eyed susans, favored by bumblebees.