FAQ's - Indoor Growing with VerdeGardens
1. I'm not a gardener, is this for me?
We get it, you kill plants. Our research and design involved testing VerdeGardens with confessed plant-killers and total beginners. And, YES, they grew veggies with ease. Our technology is your Green Thumb.
We designed VerdeGardens especially for people who don't have time to garden, or the garden know-how. The automated LED lights take care of your plants "sun" needs, and the self-watering system automatically cascades nutrients to your plants.
"I've never grown food before. It's been super easy... It's all automated so not a lot I need to do on a day-to-day basis." -Steve (Whitehorse, Yukon)
2. I am a gardener, is this for me?
Gardeners love the VerdeGardens because they can extend their growing season year-round. In the winter grow veggies that need the warmth, such as tomatoes, peppers, and fresh herbs... or fresh strawberries in January! In the spring use it to kick start seedlings for transplant. During hot summer months, grow cool crops like cilantro and lettuce, that would bolt in the heat. Year-round, easy access, to herbs for cooking are always a bonus and one of everyone's favourites!
"I like the fact that I can have veggies or herbs all year round just by walking across the kitchen. I fall short in never fertilizing my plants, so I really like the fact that you supplied me with organic nutrient water and your system basically feeds itself." - Peg (White Rock, BC)
3. Where would I put a VerdeGarden, do I have the space?
We designed VerdeGardens to fit in small spaces and add a living, breathing wall of edible plants. All you need is a small wall space, an electrical outlet, and an open area (no narrow hallways). No sun is required, and in fact we suggest keeping your garden out of direct sunlight. The LED's provide all the full spectrum light your plants need.
"It’s edible wall art, it supplies me with organic produce, I love to see things grow." -Amber (Squamish, BC)
"We live in a townhouse and don't have the space for a big garden. In our VerdeGarden we grow a little bit of everything... I love being able to grow food." -Jennie (Squamish, BC)
4. What health benefits do I receive from growing my own food?
The fresher your food, the more essential nutrients, enzymes, and vitamins it contains for a healthy body and mind. For example, leafy greens loose 50-90% of their vitamin C within 24-48 hours after harvesting. VerdeGardens allow you to pick food as you need it and maintain 100% of its nutrients.
We use only organic and heirloom seeds because we want you to feed your body the best possible food. You can also use your own seeds.
"I'm not very good at buying vegetables, and I've tried to come up with solutions like farmers markets and CSA in the summer, but there's no easy winter solution. So I figured if I had greens growing on the wall beside the kitchen, I'd be a lot more likely to eat it." - Reid (Whistler, B.C.)
5. How much do I save?
This graphic illustrates what kind of savings you can anticipate with a VerdeGraze. Prices are based on organic produce at a grocery store, and will vary per store.
*Space planting tomatoes out by 4 weeks for continuous crop. **Large heads of lettuce require their own pod, while mixed greens, arugula, mustards, and spinach can have 3 plants per pod. Learn more about succession planting for a continuous crop.
Food waste is a hidden expense for most of us. Most of us have experienced greens and herbs rotting before we can use them all. Plants begin loosing their nutrients the moment they are picked, the longer greens are on the grocery shelf and in your fridge, the less health benefits you are getting from them. The average North American meal travels 1,500 miles, so we know our food is not fresh. VerdeGardens allows you to harvest straight from the wall to your plate. It's fresh food at your fingertips."My VerdeGraze is convenient as possible for townhouse living where we don't have gardening space in the backyard. Convenience, cost savings, and also being able to have our girls growing up knowing how food grows is pretty cool too." -Derek (Squamish, BC)
"We are making pesto weekly and eating spinach daily from ours. The peppers take longer to ripen but are soooo tasty when they do." -Christina, Northern Canada
6. What are the requirements?
- See the dimensions above (see FAQ #3)
- Nibble: $10.95 per year in electricity and Graze: $21.90 (according to BC Hydro rates)
- Keep indoor room temperatures at 15 degrees Celsius (59 F) or higher for optimal growing. Your home is already heated to the perfect temperatures for growing food. Some cool plants, like lettuce and cilantro can handle cooler temperatures if you are thinking of a cooler part of your home, but most herbs, tomatoes and peppers need 15 degrees or greater for proper growth. Evening temperatures can be as low as 10 degrees Celsius.
- Limited, to no, exposure to direct sun light. VerdeGardens are made to grow food indoors, the LED light provides all the UV your plants need for growing.
- Refilling the reservoir with organic nutrients once per week.
7. What plants can I grow?
Check out our organic and heirloom seeds packages, which we are adding to regularly. Here are some examples of what you can grow:
- cherry & heirloom tomatoes
- heirloom and pickling cucumbers
- leafy greens (lettuce mixes, kale, spinach, arugula, swiss chard, mustards, choys, to name a few)
- herbs (such as varieties of basil, oregano, rosemary, thyme, dill, cilantro, parsley, mint, lavender, etc.),
- many varieties of sweet & hot peppers
- peas, beans, small zucchinis and squashes.
The VerdeGardens does not grow root veggies such as: carrots, beets, onions, garlic, turnips, etc.
8. What are the benefits of growing your own food?
- Fresh food tastes better. WAY better! You know why? Because it is packed with nutrients! (see FAQ #4).
- You save money (see FAQ #5)
- Scientists estimate agriculture contributes between 11% to 14% of green house gases globally. With drought, severely depleted aquifers, harmful effects of pesticides, climate change, and increasing world population, it is more important than ever, that we grow even a little bit of our own food.
- 45 % of veggies go to waste in countries like US and Canada. If each household grew even a small amount of their own food, it would reduce the burden on our planet. "The carbon footprint of food produced and not eaten is estimated at 3.3 gigatonnes of CO2, meaning that if food waste were a country it would rank as the third highest national emitter of greenhouse gases after the US and China." https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/aug/12/cutting-food-waste-enough-for-everyone-says-un
- How far did your meal travel to get to your plate? The average North American meal travels 1500 miles from farm to table. Growing your own food is a significant solution to reducing your impact.
9. What are the benefits of hydroponics?
NASA put hydroponics to the forefront with their Research and Development; however, hydroponics are used widely by commercial growers/greenhouses.
What is it? Essentially the nutrients the plants would absorb from soil is added to water, so no soil is required. Our breakthrough vertical cascade technology supplies the plants with an nutrient water and plants grow in recycled glass.
- Growth rates are typically 2-3 weeks faster with hydroponics because the plants do not need to put time into developing complex roots systems to seek out nutrients like they do in soil.
- Saving water. VerdeGardens recirculates water, using 2/3 less water than an outdoor garden.
- 365 Days of indoor growing goodness. Your home, office, school, is already heated and the perfect temperature for growing food year-round.
- Recycled glass instead or soil = no mess!
We are proud to have made the Greenest indoor garden on the market
10. Is there humidity?
No. It is not a greenhouse, it is no different than having indoor house plants. Ya, ok, but waaaay cooler! Our patented technology allows your wall to breath allowing air to flow to travel behind your VerdeGarden. The material is ABS plastic, safe for growing food, and waterproof.
11. How often do I add fresh water?
For optimal growing you should add new nutrient water once a week.
12. Does the water become stagnant or have an odor?
The nutrients is odorless. The plants themselves retain very little water, because they grow in recycled glass instead of soil.
13. How long will a VerdeGarden last?
Probably longer than you and I. The ABS plastic will last a lifetime if it is not exposed to direct sunlight. We believe in making quality products, we will not be a part of the disposable economy. Pass your garden on to your grandchildren! The LED lights have a 2 year manufacturers warranty, but life expectancy of LED's is 7-10 years and are affordable and replaceable.
15. What about pests?
VerdeGardens are sterile and do not contain pests. However, pests can be introduced from your houseplants, and outdoor plants. We highly recommend ensuring your house plants are not infected with bugs like spider mites or aphids. Treat houseplants with a safe insecticide or soapy water prior to setting up your VerdeGarden. Additional measures like washing your hands and changing your clothes when handling outdoor plants prior to handling your indoor garden will ensure your VerdeGarden stays pest free .
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