Even if you don’t have a garden, you can ditch shop-bought greens and cut your carbon footprint by growing your own tasty salads and herbs at home.
Earlier this year, furniture giant Ikea introduced a new indoor gardening series in collaboration with agricultural scientists in Sweden.
With the Krydda/Växer ‘indoor gardening series’, you can grow you own plants without sunlight or soil. How? By using high-tech hydroponics technology!
Hydroponics simply means growing plants in water without soil. With the right amount of nutrients and light you can grow in any small space all year round. Most vegetables we eat today are grown this year, so why not do it yourself?
There are lots of environmental benefits. Hydroponics uses less than 10 per cent of the amount of water compared to growing with soil. You also won’t need any pesticides because you’re growing indoors, without soil.
Your fossil fuel consumption will go down as well, because your salads won’t need to be shipped from farms around the world.
The aim of the series was to “make growing plants in a hydroponic system simple, so that anyone could succeed,” according to Helena Karlén of the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences.
It certainly seems simple. All you need to get started is water, seeds and a growing kit.
The first step is to soak the plugs – they will hold your seeds.
Next, you add the seeds into the plugs.
Give your seedlings a bit of light and time to grow.
Once they’re big enough the seeds can be replanted into bigger pots with pumice stones.
Now just sit back and watch your greens grow!
If you think hydroponics is cool, you should check out GrowUp Urban Farms! This Climate-KIC start-up uses aquaponics to grow greens at an industrial scale.