The company behind NASA-inspired “Wall Farms” and countertop herb gardens has just launched its newest product, a self-contained system for growing fruits and vegetables in the comfort of your kitchen. Click & Grow says its Smart Garden 9 grows fresh produce with 95 percent less water, and resulting in produce with up to 600 percent more antioxidants, than store-bought produce.
Unlike many other indoor gardens, the Smart Garden is neither hydroponic nor aeroponic — instead it uses a proprietary “Smart Soil” that maintains levels of oxygen, water, pH, and nutritional matter without the use of pesticides and herbicides. It took more than three years for Click & Grow to develop its specialized soil, which was inspired by NASA’s work in creating a substrate that can be used for gardening in space.
Like its predecessors, the Smart Garden 9 is a set-and-forget system meant for busy — or lazy — city dwellers who lack the space, initiative, or expertise to farm a proper plot. Fill the tank with water, plug it in, set the LED grow lights to their desired height, and produce like kale, arugula, and strawberries should grow within a few weeks. The new system has expanded from the original Smart Garden, including nine individual pots for nine different plants.
“We hope people start growing at least some part of the fresh produce they consume,” Click & Grow founder Mattias Lepp told Digital Trends. “We think it’s important to give people the chance to enjoy the freshest and cleanest salads, vegetables, fruits, and herbs even if they live in large cities. This way they can be sure the food they consume has not been sprayed with herbicides, fungicides, or other harmful substances, and actually enjoy the food they eat. The emotional value of growing your own food is priceless.”
In September, Click & Grow launched the Wall Farm and Wall Farm Mini, which can grow 57 and 38 plants, respectively. At $799 and $299, the wall farms aren’t cheap. The Smart Garden 9 is smaller but more affordable, with a Kickstarter price of $129.