Happy Friday, fellow nerds! Another week has come and gone (can you believe it? 💨💨), and we’re looking ahead to Thanksgiving already. But before we make that leap, let’s take a look at this week’s GreenGut Weekly Find.
Say hello to Rise Gardens, 👩🏻🌾 a company doing something unique in the indoor farming space. Instead of building large-scale vertical farms or setting up growing spaces inside shipping containers, Rise is bringing hydroponic systems a little closer to home.
Right in the home, in fact. If you’re the type who likes your food super fresh and local, this company’s solutions may be exactly what you’re looking for.
Growing (and Eating) Close to Home
Home gardening was among the areas of interest that peaked when COVID-19 hit, and there’s still a trend toward cooking and eating more at home. 🍴 (Consumers were already concerned about food safety and personal health prior to the pandemic, which led to a greater focus on natural ingredients and plant-based diets that has changed the trajectories of entire markets. 🌿🥩)
Rise Gardens makes both things possible—and easy—with their lineup of four at-home growing systems. Each system combines LED lighting 💡 with hydroponics 💦to deliver a precise amount of light and nutrients to each plant, making it possible to grow a variety of different vegetables at home regardless of prior gardening experience.
From the personal garden system—which fits on a desktop or countertop—to the three-tier triple family garden, Rise systems offer flexible growing solutions for households of all sizes. Different configurations and add-ons make it possible to grow anywhere from eight to 108 plants in a single unit.
Modular Garden Technology
There are two major perks that make Rise systems attractive. One is that they’re, well, attractive. The gardens look right at home with other pieces of furniture, doing double duty as home accents. 🌱 The flexible, modular setup allows for experimentation with different configurations and numbers of plants.
Perk number two is the tech. 📱 Rise provides an app that connects to the system and tracks when plants need attention. There’s no guessing went to add water or nutrients; the app tells home growers the right time for and amount of each. ⏰ A recent investment by Amazon’s Alexa fund also hints at the possibility of an Alexa integration in the future.
Rise offers their own seed pods for a variety of produce, including leafy greens, tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, Chinese cabbages and even beets. 🍆🍅🥒🥗 Home growers may choose to subscribe and have all the gardening supplies delivered on a regular basis or use their own seeds. It’s all up to personal preference.
Equipping the Next Generation
Rise Gardens CEO Hank Adams sees the company’s systems as a complement to outdoor gardening. He considers it all part of the larger picture of what’s happening with vertical farming, the re-emergence of regenerative agriculture 🚜 and the return to home gardening.
Although a family couldn’t feed themselves entirely off of a Rise system, such indoor hydroponic setups offer individuals and families quick access to fresh, healthy produce and provide a way for the whole family to get involved in growing and preparing food. 🥘
It also gives kids an opportunity to observe the entire growing process and gain an understanding of where food comes from. This is especially useful in areas where gardening is impractical or impossible, and it increases the likelihood that kids will actually eat the vegetables they helped grow. 😋
Adams sees a great potential for educational applications of Rise systems, as well. The different sizes make it possible to install systems in just about any classroom or bring smaller, personal-sized systems into students’ homes as part of remote learning programs.💻
It certainly levels up the functionality and benefit of having houseplants! 🌿
How can you beat a garden that pretty much takes care of itself and gives you fresh produce even when the weather isn’t conducive to gardening? As someone with a black thumb (yes, I even killed a potted cactus 😅🌵), I like the idea of an app that helps direct the care of the plants from seed to harvest.
I can also see this being incredibly helpful in the journey to a better food system, particularly in the area of educating kids on how food grows and what truly healthy eating looks like. Starting that education at a young age is critical for equipping upcoming generations with the skills and knowledge they need to continue building a better framework. 👍🏻
Where do you see hydroponic systems like these fitting into the future of food? 👇🏻
Stay tuned to The Modern Health Nerd Podcast for a full interview with Rise Gardens CEO Hank Adams, dropping in January!