Five smart gardens that will help you grow vegetables at home

Sustainable technology saves the day in times of scarcity and uncertainty. Here’s five ideas to kickstart your own self-sufficient indoor garden.

Are you worried your local supermarket will run short of fresh produce during the Coronavirus pandemic? Worry not: in the last few years a flurry of startups have devoted their funds and brainpower to creating automated, self-sufficient and stylish indoor gardens that can consistently provide fresh vegetables for a small family. Now it’s their time to shine, as what used to be a little product niche aimed at environmentally conscious millennials can tap into a suddenly larger market of locked-down city dwellers. We’ve selected four of them that need just a little setup and a fifth one for those who love IKEA hacks and DIY.

Véritable SMART
Véritable is a French brand offering a stylish and nicely designed indoor garden in various configurations. The SMART model can autonomously manage irrigation and lighting - delivered through height adjustable lamps - thanks to specialized sensors, and can therefore sit inside in your apartment or outside in the balcony. Seeds of a number of fruit plants and vegetable are available in the form of ingots containing also the natural substrate and all the nutrients the plants need for a full growth cycle.  

Click & Grow
The concept is basically the same for Click & Grow. Instead of ingots, users buy special pods choosing from a variety of 45 fruits, herbs and leafy greens. Everything’s also automated, but the user needs to manually adjust the LED lamps height as the vegetables grow. Click and grow comes in two sizes, one that fits up to three plants and one that fits up to nine.

Tregren T-series
Unlike Véritable and Click & Grow, the T-Series indoor gardens from Tregren grow your vegetables through a simplified hydroponics system. All the nutrients are delivered through the plants through water. Seeds and seed pods can be bought separately and arranged into one of the three modular gardens, the T3, the T9 or the T12, with numbers indicating their size.  

Blumfeldt, a well known German brand of outdoor furniture, launched its own indoor hydroponic garden, and it’s one of the cheapest options on this list. Thanks to a modular setup it can fit up to 12 plants who will be ready to eat in 25 to 40 days based on the variety. Unlike the other solutions, the seed pods here let you plant whatever seed you like. Users will also have to buy the hydroponic nutrients separately from the garden, based on the plants they wish to grow.

Orto perpetuo and Elioo
The last indoor garden from this list is more of a design project than an actual product, thus fitting all the DIY enthusiast out there. Orto Perpetuo - literally perpetual garden - is a easy-setup hydroponic garden, designed by Antonio Scarponi and Bulbo, capable of producing leafy vegetables year-round. It combines Eliooo, a simple hydroponic system that anyone can make using IKEA boxes and wall mounts, and Quadra, a 14W LED light from Bulbo.


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