What Is the Cost of Vertical Farming?

cost of vertical farming

Vertical farming is making it possible to grow crops anywhere, anytime.

In addition to lessening the potential for contamination, vertical farming also means that plants are able to grow faster than they are in traditional outdoor farming spaces.

Of course, there’s another huge reason why vertical farming has become so popular recently: the lowered cost.

In this post, we’ll take a look at the cost of vertical farming, so you can determine whether or not it’s something you’re interested in taking on yourself.

Understanding the Cost Of Vertical Farming: the Basics

Though investors are certainly putting a lot of money behind vertical farming, you may not have millions of dollars to spend on your own indoor, LED-powered farm.

Don’t panic.

The cost of vertical farming may seem expensive, but it ultimately saves you far more than you think. You won’t have to worry about losing money on crop failure thanks to changing weather patterns or simply poor yields.

You’ll also be able to make more money, thanks to the recent consumer demand for food that has not been genetically modified. This means you won’t need to spend on herbicides and pesticides.

Vertical farming also lessens the need for expensive fuel for things like tractors and plows. (Of course, it does a lot to help the environment, too.)

You’ll even be able to spend less money on farming space itself. Many have turned abandoned warehouses and other urban spaces into vertical farms.

This means that vertical farming helps you to seriously cut costs when it comes to production, and allows you to grow year-round, meaning more consistent income.

Now, let’s take a quick look at the more specific costs associated with vertical farming.

Getting More Detailed

We wish we were able to give a ballpark estimate for what a vertical farming project is likely to cost you.

However, much of that cost is influenced by the individual decisions you make. Which crops do you want to grow? How much of a yield are you looking for? What’s the space you want to grow in?

Which heating and watering equipment will you use? What about labor costs?

Essentially, you’ll need to think about details like:

  • Ventilation and insulation
  • Shelving and door units
  • Building permits
  • Shipping costs
  • Lighting
  • Water recycling systems
  • Labor costs
  • How much space you’ll need
  • Automation systems
  • Heating and cooling systems
  • Hydroponic systems

In general, vertical farming is not cheap, but if you can afford to make a pretty sizable estimate up front, you’ll be able to save serious costs in the long run.

To get a detailed estimate of your potential cost, you’ll need to contact a professional vertical farming company.

Ready to Start Vertical Farming?

Of course, a lowered cost and the ability to generate more profits around the clock are just two of the many benefits of vertical farming.

You’ll also be able to enjoy healthier food, be on the ground floor of amazing farming innovations, and much more.

To learn more about the cost of vertical farming, and what it can offer, spend some time on our website and blog.

How Organic Agriculture Helps the Environment

Organic Agriculture

Go Green!

This seems to be one of the biggest catchphrases of the 21st century. With a huge push to focus on choosing organic food and supporting local farming and agriculture, ‘going green’ not only ensures that we stay healthy but that we can help the environment, too!

Studies show that over 90% of the chemicals found in our food have not been tested for long-term health effects to ensure their safety when we consume them.

A potential translation for that staggering statistic – only 10% of our food can be considered safe.

That’s scary!

It’s no wonder why hoards of the world’s population are leaning towards the importance of organic agriculture. Not only are we in dire need of eating healthy to sustain life, but we need to farm correctly to try and salvage the environment.

Check out some of the biggest reasons why organic agriculture can help us ‘go green’ and benefit our environment.

Top Reasons the Earth Loves Organic Agriculture

No Bug Drugs

One of the biggest issues that have been plaguing both the planet as well as humankind is the overuse of pesticides.

There was a time when farmers would spray homemade bug elixirs on their crops to ward off those pesky pests. However, nowadays – agricultural land is being sprayed by planes, helicopters, and massive trucks.

Not only are these bug drugs hurting our food, but thanks to ‘pesticide drifts‘ the chemicals are draining into our water supplies and affecting people that live near the sprayed farmlands.

Organic agriculture eliminates this situation.

Opting for more natural and sustainable methods, organic farmlands choose to use non-chemical solutions to keeping pests at bay.

No Drama With Antibiotic Resistance

It seems that every news station chronicles the growing epidemic of antibiotic resistance and its dangers to society.

Of course, very rarely do you see the rest of the story that details how the massive and widespread use of antibiotics on livestock is the leading culprit of this situation.

Thanks to organic agriculture, this is never a concern. Raising livestock in a natural setting with room to roam has allowed grass-fed cows and other farmyard friends to avoid the need for toxic chemicals and drugs.

Even better – these animals can help keep land fertilized with clean waste products, as well as naturally living off the land and helping sustain the landscape.

Saving Water

One of the most exciting advances in organic agriculture is the use of hydroponic farms.

Being able to grow food in a plant-based, nutrient rich environment – produce can be grown naturally and with the planet in mind. This type of organic agriculture allows for the recirculation and reuse of water, which keeps us green and eliminates wasteful farming practices.

Even better – hydroponic farming is an amazing way to start a sustainable business that is financially lucrative and environmentally sound.

Keep It Green And Keep It Clean

The use of organic agriculture will be one of the most important keys to salvaging our planet and our health.

By simply eliminating the bug drugs, the antibiotic overuse drama, and finding ways to save water, this type of natural farming has the ability to keep the earth green and healthy.

The best part about organic agriculture is that it provides all of us an opportunity to help benefit the environment because we can grow our own food from the comfort of our own homes.

Think it’s hard to flex your green thumb? Think again!

Maybe indoor or vertical farming could be just the thing you need to keep you, your family, and your environment healthy.

5 Benefits of Organically Grown Vegetables

Organically Grown

Organically grown, gluten-free, all natural…these are health buzzwords you’re bound to see plastered on food labels whenever you visit a grocery store or farmer’s market.

But what does organic really mean and what are the benefits of eating organic veggies?

The USDA Label Reveals Organically Grown Produce

The USDA organic label applies to produce, meat, multi-ingredient foods, and packaged products.

With produce, it can be certified organic if it has grown on soil that has been pesticide- and fertilizer-free for three years before harvest.

The general rule though for organic producers is to always use natural substances and biologically based farming methods whenever possible. This includes processes covering seed sources, weed and pest management, and water systems, to mention a few.

Using this label creates more informed shoppers.

So Why Eat Organically Grown Veggies?

Organic food has been shown to have environmental and health benefits. Here are the top five reasons why you should consider incorporating more organic foods in your diet.

Here are the top five reasons why you should consider incorporating more organic foods in your diet.

1. It’s Great for the Environment

Organic farming is all about keeping the soil healthy. When the soil is healthy, farmers can do away with synthetic fertilizers and pesticides.

Synthetic fertilizers and pesticides can pollute groundwater courses.

In Germany, for example, switching to organic agriculture is encouraged because conventional/industrial farming has ruined water quality. Plus, tap water that’s contaminated with nitrates or phosphates is more expensive to treat.

2. There’s Less Exposure to Pesticides and Heavy Metals

You’ve probably come across articles about Roundup (weed killer). It has been deemed by California health officials as a carcinogen.

There’s also chlorpyrifos, a pesticide that can overstimulate the nervous system, according to the EPA. In high doses, chlorpyrifos is lethal, which is why workers need to wear personal protective equipment when handling it.

Organic farming only uses organic pesticides and fertilizers.

This means you don’t have to worry about the risks associated with synthetic pesticides. The differences in fertilization methods also decrease your exposure to heavy metals such as cadmium, which can damage the liver and kidneys.

3. You Get More Antioxidants

A study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry looked at the antioxidant content of organically grown onions.

The researchers found out that compared to conventionally grown onions, the organic ones showed more antioxidant activity.

Total flavonoid content is also higher in organic onions.

Flavonoids, as you may already know, have been shown to have anti-inflammatory, antidiabetic, and neuroprotective benefits. The researchers attribute these to differences in soil management practices.

4. They Taste Better

Since organic produce doesn’t contain preservatives, they can’t be on the shelves for a long time. As a result, organic fruits and vegetables taste better because they’re fresher.

This is another reason that shopping organic trumps preservative-laden alternatives any day.

5. You Can Grow Them Yourself

The problem with buying organic produce is they tend to be expensive. But the good news is if you want fresh fruits and veggies, you can start your own organic garden.

It does take some research and lots of effort. But as long as you keep at it, you’ll get to enjoy the fruits of your labor and all the benefits that come with it.

Learn About Indoor Farming

If you’re interested in growing your own organic fruits and veggies, you might want to consider indoor farming and vertical farming.

You can browse our posts or Contact Us for more information.

Top 5 Organic Food Trends of 2017

Organic Food Trends

Organic food sales make up around 4% of all U.S. food sales, with organic foods appearing in 3 out of 4 conventional grocery stores in the United States.

There’s no reason to think that the popularity of organic food trends won’t continue to grow.

Just as the popularity of organic foods grows, general preferences and mindsets surrounding said food also continue to grow.

What Are The Top Five Organic Food Trends Of 2017?

People are taking to organic foods for good reason. Let’s start to get a handle on the following five reasons:

1. Brain-focused Foods

Whereas there has recently been a focus on gut health, 2017 figures to be the year in which we start focusing on breath health in the organic food industry.

Foods and substances which are designed to benefit the brain are called nootropic foods.

Nootropic foods offer a number of benefits, including increased memory, improved mood, and decreased anxiety.

These foods include everything from eggs, to green tea, to blueberries, and much, much more.

2. Small Snacks

Another trend that is bound to take hold in 2017 is smaller portion sizes; not only at restaurants but at grocery stores as well.

Consumers have increasingly begun to opt for smaller and smaller portion sizes, and have even begun to ask companies if they can distribute smaller sizes.

This is so for a number of purposes, the most obvious of which is cost. But not only are consumers seeking to spend less money, they’re seeking to eat smaller meals or snacks in general.

But not only are consumers seeking to spend less money, they’re seeking to eat smaller meals or snacks in general.

Businesses will be keen to accommodate their customers, as they will be able to ship larger quantities of products, saving money in the process.

3. Turmeric

Turmeric is another substance that’s picking up steam in the organic food community.

A spice derived from the turmeric plant, it’s often used in foods like mustard and cheese, as well as in various powders. In fact, turmeric is sold by itself as a powder that can be used to supplement foods.

This spice is beneficial for its anti-inflammatory characteristics.

It can be used to treat high cholesterol, arthritis, and itchy or dry skin, to name just a few conditions.

4. Vegetable-based Foods

As veganism continues to grow in popularity, so too do vegetable-based foods.

Vegetables are being incorporated into almost everything, from fast food to snacks, to beverages, and more.

Kale chips, eggplant jerky, roasted chickpeas, and avocado fries are just a few of the snacks that comprise this vegetable-based attitude.

5. Hydroponic Farming

As organic foods become more and more popular, people are looking to grow their own food. The problem is that most people don’t have the yard space to accomplish such a task.

The solution? Hydroponic farming.

Hydroponic farming has made it possible for city dwellers to grow their own crops right from the comfort of their homes or apartments.

While it can be a little more expensive than typical farming, it’s less damaging to the environment, and typically faster as well.

Keep Up on Organic Food Trends

We aim to deliver all of the important and pertinent news as it has to do with indoor farming and organic food. Have any questions about organic food trends? Contact us!

5 Reasons to Start an Indoor Vertical Garden

Indoor Vertical Garden

As organic foods become more and more sought after, more and more people are attempting to grow their own produce.

However, because most people have limited amounts of yard space, they can’t grow as much as they might like.

But there is a solution to this problem, and that solution is indoor vertical gardening.

Wondering how such a garden can benefit you? Read on.

Why Should I Start An Indoor Vertical Garden?

When you want to be healthy, happy and organized, indoor gardening makes too much sense. Here are five reasons to start an indoor vertical garden.

1. Save Space

As was noted above, vertical gardens allow you to save tons of yard space. Whereas the confines of your yard are limited, the distance to the sky is essentially endless.

This is an especially relevant benefit in cities where many people have small yards or no yards at all. For those people, growing a standard, horizontal garden would be impossible.

But by growing their crops up inside of their apartments or homes, they are capable of growing everything from peas to cucumbers, to sweet potatoes, and more.

2. Produce Healthier Produce

When you grow your plants outside on the ground, you are leaving them susceptible to a number of different disturbers.

Pests such as rodents, termites, and groundhogs will often eat away at growing plants, killing them, or rendering them unsanitary. Not to mention, when plants are grown on the ground, they tend to grow on top of each other, stifling the movement of oxygen.

Growing your plants in a vertical fashion indoors helps you to avoid both of these problems.

This results in healthier crops as well as a higher crop yield.

3. Unique Aesthetic

Another benefit of growing a vertical garden indoors is that it gives your house or apartment a unique aesthetic compared to other houses and apartments.

Instead of buying a fake ficus, bring a little vegetation to your home’s decor by growing some authentic plants.

There are plants of all different colors and types, each of which will bring a different visual element to your home.

4. Offer Tons of Variety

One of the best things about growing a vertical garden indoors is that you are able to plant a wide variety of crops.

With horizontal, outdoor gardens, you are limited to about five crops at the most. With vertical gardens, you can realistically plant dozens of different crops at once.

Whether you want to grow flowers, or foliage, or crops, or otherwise, you can do so with indoor gardening.

5. Easier to Tend

When you’re tending a horizontal garden outside, you’re forced to step outside into the elements and to bend down in order to reach them. With a vertical indoor garden, neither of these things is necessary.

Because vertical gardens are built up toward your arms, you can tend them while standing completely upright.

And because they’re inside, you can roll right out of bed and get the job done.

Perfect Your Own Indoor Vertical Garden

Are you looking to create and perfect your very own indoor vertical garden?

On our blog, we provide tons of information about indoor vertical gardening, indoor farming, organic foods, and more.

Have any questions for us? Contact us today!

4 Benefits of Using Indoor Growing Systems

Indoor Growing Systems

There’s an explosion happening in the high-yield gardening world, and it’s happening in hydroponics.

These systems represent an electrifying new period in gardening and are becoming the standard in farming.

With more and more gardeners taking their work indoors, there’s never been a better time to discover the benefits of indoor growing systems.

Today, we’ll be showing you our top four reasons why.

Grow More, By Using Indoor Growing Systems

Hydroponics used to be an industry considered too scientific for the average gardener.

That’s changing, thanks to internet instruction videos, do-it-yourself home kits, and improved shipping services.

The technology is becoming democratized, and it seems like the whole world is getting onboard with hydroponics.

Consider the following points to see why growing your plants indoors is quickly becoming the new standard.

#1: It Takes Less Work To Do It Right

One of the most popular reasons for using hydroponic setups is that they’re easy.

Once you have the system setup, there is little to no soil being used. This means you won’t have to deal with the typical weeding duties that plague traditional gardeners.

Moreover, you won’t have to turn over any soil or prepare it in any way before you start gardening.

#2: Plants Are Better Quality

There’s a reason indoor gardening systems have such a great reputation.

With a hydroponic setup, you’ll have complete control over the nutrients and method of growing your plant. No unexpected contaminants or problems to bring down the quality of your plant.

What this means, of course, is stronger, more resilient plants, without many of the ailments and issues of an exposed system.

#3: Efficient Use Of Space And Time

Indoor gardens like these are also a great way for people with small, inner-city homes and fulltime work schedules to garden when it suits them

These plants aren’t subject to seasonal weather or at risk of regional diseases.

Indoor growing systems can be tended to at night or in the mornings, and fed automatically, even without you there to check on them.

#4: Adjustable, Affordable Budget

Because indoor growing systems cut out a lot of traditional overheads, such as soil and pesticides, it’s a much more affordable growing option.

Start out on a smaller budget and add on to your garden, modularly, as and when you need it. It’s also eco-friendly, with many farmers using drip irrigation tech to route and loop water through the system to save on maintenance costs.

Transform Your Gardening With Indoor Growing Systems

With all of the benefits to using an indoor hydroponics system, it’s easy to see why it’s gained so much popularity in recent years.

Cut costs, bolster the quality of your plant life, and grow extensively in close quarters. Do all of this on a schedule that suits your life, while experiencing fantastic results.

Are you interested in learning more about the benefits of indoor, vertical and other forms of localized farming? Perhaps you are looking into bringing your farming indoors.

Pay us a visit, today, and discover a world of hydroponic and vertical possibilities.

6 Tips for Growing Vegetables Indoors

Growing Vegetables Indoors

As concerns about the use of pesticides and genetically modified foods continue to grow, many consumers have begun to question the safety of their produce. In 2016, organic food sales hit a record $43 billion, an increase of 8.4 percent over the previous year.

Fortunately, thanks to the latest indoor farming trends, growing vegetables indoors is now a viable option for almost anyone who is willing to put forth the effort.

Growing your own vegetables requires some basic knowledge and a little bit of up-front cost, but the benefits are well worth it. Follow these six simple tips and you’ll be up and running in no time.

Growing Vegetables Indoors Requires Adequate Lighting

Plants require photosynthesis to survive. Above all else, indoor gardeners must ensure that plants receive the appropriate amount and type of lighting. Don’t assume that a window will be sufficient, especially in the winter.

Most plants require 14 – 16 hours of light per day. Be sure to choose specially made grow lights and ensure they have the same wavelengths as the sun. Place the lights as close to the plants as possible while taking care not to burn them.

Choose the Right Plants for Your Indoor Garden

You will have the most success with plants that do well under artificial light. Ideally, the vegetables you choose to grow indoors will be compact in size and mature quickly. Some of the best plants for indoor gardening include:

  • Lettuce
  • Spinach
  • Carrots
  • Radishes
  • Bok Choi
  • Herbs
  • Microgreens

Decide on Your Growing Method

If you choose to go the traditional route, make sure you use a quality potting soil. The dirt you find in your backyard is not sufficient for growing vegetables indoors. The soil should be loosely packed and drain well while still retaining sufficient moisture.

Growing plants hydroponically, or without the use of soil, is another popular indoor gardening technique.

Get Creative with Your Space

Thanks to many creative vertical farming methods, your indoor garden can easily take up as little or as much space as you are willing to give it. Your setup doesn’t have to be extravagant. Growing vegetables indoors can easily be done on a window sill or simple table top.

Pay Attention to Humidity

Indoor gardeners need to pay close attention to the plant’s humidity needs. You can tell this is negatively impacting your garden if the leaves begin to turn brown, are dry or withered, or the leaves start to fall off. This can be countered by misting the plants daily or running a humidifier.

Feed and Water Your Plants

Vegetables and herbs grown indoors typically need to be watered every day. Before you water, check the surface of the soil to confirm whether it’s still holding moisture. If so, consider switching to every other day.

Depending on whether you use liquid or granular fertilizer, you will need to feed your plants every one to three weeks. Remember that the fertilizer you use will become part of the plant that you will eventually eat, so always use a high-quality, organic product.

Indoor Gardening is Easier Than You Think

As the cost of organic produce continues to increase year-over-year, indoor gardening has become an attractive alternative. Few can argue that there is a certain comfort that comes with knowing exactly where your food comes from. Once you learn the basics, you’ll be pleasantly surprised with how easy it is to reap the benefits of indoor gardening.

Do you have questions about growing vegetables indoors or tips you’d like to share? Please don’t hesitate to comment below or contact us directly.

Indoor Gardening: 5 Fastest Growing Vegetables

Fastest Growing Vegetables

Over a billion pounds of pesticides are used every year on US farms.

With the uncertainty of how these pesticides affect our health and our children’s development, more people are seeking out ways to consume pesticide-free, organic produce.

But for those of us who want to know exactly where our food is coming from and what goes into it, indoor gardening and vertical farming are becoming more appealing alternatives than buying organic produce in stores.

Even those living in the middle of a city can reap the economic and health benefits of their own personal vegetable supply.

Ready to get started growing some of the fastest growing vegetables in the comfort of your own apartment or home?

Let’s take a look below to learn more.

What Are The Fastest Growing Vegetables?

To pack your freezer and cupboards with healthy, fresh vegetables, it starts by choosing those that grow quickest. Start out with some of the following five, which you can easily grow at home.

1. Mushrooms

Mushrooms make an ideal indoor crop any time of the year but they prefer cool dark spaces so it can be easier to find a suitable place for them in winter.

If you’re new to indoor gardening then you might prefer to buy a prepared mushroom-growing kit. These come ready with mushroom spawn in prepared bags of special compost.

Simply water the spawn and leave the bag in a dark, draft-free space such as a cupboard kept at 50 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit and you’ll have a crop of mushrooms within a few weeks.

2. Peas

Early varieties of peas such as ‘Alaska’ or ‘Daybreak’ are often ready in around six weeks.

Although peas respond well to cooler weather, they do need a lot of light. Make sure to place them near a window which receives eight hours of full sun each day or keep grow lights on for at least eight hours a day.

You can pinch the pea shoots off anytime for salads and pick the pods regularly.

3. Radishes

Radishes are famous for being one of the fastest growing vegetables.

With tubers ready to eat in 25 days, you can be sure of a constant supply all year round.

Cover your radish seeds with paper until they begin to sprout, and then move them to a sunny spot when the cotyledons start to appear.

When two or three true leaves start to come through you can thin out the seedlings and use them in salads as microgreens.

4. Tomatoes

Although full-sized tomatoes can take longer than two months to grow, several types of cherry and grape tomatoes are among the fastest growing vegetables to plant indoors.

Tiny Tim, Pixie Hybrid, and Red Robin varieties respond particularly well to container growing, as they produce smaller plants and have tomatoes ready to pick in around 45 days.

5. Green Onions

Most onions take several months to fully mature, but green onions are ready to be picked after less than four weeks, making them a clear exception.

Not only are green onions one of the fastest growing vegetables, they also take up minimal space indoors.

Be sure to pot them in a mix of soil and quality compost as they thrive in rich soils.

Enjoy The Fastest Growing Vegetables to Plant Indoors

Indoor gardening is becoming more common as we look for ways to consume healthier, safer produce in a more convenient and economical way.

With a variety of vegetables ready for eating less than two months after planting, you can look forward to a regular crop of ready-to-eat organic vegetables.

Which vegetables are you planning on growing at home?

Let us know by commenting below or contact us if you have any questions about growing vegetables indoors.

A Complete Indoor Vegetable Planting Guide

Vegetable Planting Guide

Are you envious of your friends who live in suburban neighborhoods and have plenty of space for an outdoor garden? Are the trips to the local farmers market taking up too much of your weekend? Don’t fret, indoor farming is a growing trend.

There are many people who would love to have a vegetable garden but don’t have access to outdoor spaces. Others feel limited by the lack of natural sunlight.

If you have never considered an indoor garden before we are here to let you know it is completely doable. This growing trend is turning indoor living spaces into personal vegetable stands.

Here is a vegetable planting guide if you are considering growing your own indoor garden.

Space

One of your first concerns about growing an indoor garden will probably be space. How much will it require? Will it be too big or bulking?

The answer is quite simple. Indoor gardens do not require a lot of space. There are shelving units and greenhouses that do not take up much space.

A few years ago IKEA, the hip furniture retailer, released a hydroponic garden.

The devices came with everything you need and in various sizes that can fit inside a windowsill or stand next to a counter.

Other devices can easily blend in with your current decor.

Lighting

Plants need sunlight to grow is a misconception when it comes to indoor gardens. They need light and that light can be produced from an artificial source,

As indoor gardens have grown in popularity so have products to support the phenomenon. There are lighting fixtures to fit every indoor garden design.

Understanding how lighting affects different vegetables will help you determine the type of lighting you will need. You do not want something that emanates too much heat.

Seedlings can dry out and foliage can burn with improper lighting sources.

Air Circulation

Good air flow inside your home is very important for an indoor garden. Poor circulation can damage plants.

If the soil is always moist it can cause problems with the roots of the plant. Moist soil also draws insects.

There are two ways you can increase air flow. One is to place your indoor garden near a window. Our vegetable planting guide to air circulation is to use a low energy fan.

Room Temperature Vegetable Planting Guide

Temperature is as important to indoor gardens as is lighting. Plants can be a bit temperamental, same as humans.

The perfect temperature range for plants is between 65 and 80 degrees, depending on the time of day.

Homeowners may turn off their AC at night, or when away from the home for an extended period of time. When you’re growing an indoor garden this is not always an option.

When selecting your vegetable crop, ensure your indoor space will be comfortable for you and your plants.

Are You Ready to Start Your Indoor Garden?

If you need more tips and vegetable planting guide for your indoor vegetable garden contact us with your questions.

We also invite you to follow our indoor farming blog.