All posts filed under: Things for the Garden

LA Urban Farms Vertical Garden Growing System

Founded in 2013, LA Urban Farms offers a vertical garden system which can grow vegetables, fruits, herbs and edible flowers, with no gardening experience necessary. These space-saving vertical gardens only require 30 inches of space and use aeroponic technology which grows plants in an air or mist environment without the use of any soil. The reservoir at the base holds nutrient-rich water, which is pumped to the top of the garden, showering the roots of all the plants along the way, without the use of any harmful chemicals. All the seeds used by LA Urban Farms are 100% organic and non-GMO. The gardens are made from FDA food grade-approved plastic, and can help earn LEED points. The gardens also use 90% less water than conventional gardening, because the water is being recirculated in the system until the plants absorb it or it evaporates, and they use 90% less space because they are growing vertically. LA Urban Farms offers gardens in a variety of sizes, from smaller sizes perfect for growing fresh produce at home, to …

Crafty Birdhouses Made from Salvaged Materials

To keep busy during the long New England winters, landscape architect Neil Best, co-owner of Magma Design Group in Rehoboth, Massachusetts, began building birdhouses that meet Audubon standards. These one-of-a-kind works of art are made of salvaged materials including slate roof tiles, metal strapping, recycled wood, old tin boxes, and rusted signs. Designed to provide maximum comfort for Chickadees, Tufted Titmice, and Nuthatches, these handmade bird cottages offer roof and floor ventilation as well as thresholds surrounded by metal or stone to prevent squirrels or predatory birds from widening the openings and gaining entry. The birdhouses can be back-mounted or attached to a pole, and no tools are required to open and empty the houses after the last resident has left the nest. Prices range from $350 to $500, depending on style. All images courtesy of Magma Design Group.

Meet the Food Cycler: The First Residential Composting Appliance

Most food waste can be turned into healthy compost for your garden or potted plants, but urban dwellers don’t have an easy way to compost their own waste into a nutrient-rich soil supplement without an outdoor composting container. Or, perhaps they do have the outdoor space, but other issues prevent them from composting outside (attracting hungry bears or violating local ordinances, for example). Food Cycle Science, the Canadian producers of organic food waste recycling solutions for the foodservice industry, offers an interesting new solution with the launch of the Food Cycler:Home, the first residential composting appliance. The 1 cubic meter size unit is able to operate anywhere there is an electrical outlet, and can be incorporated into the home from as early as the design phase. Food Cycle Science hopes the Food Cycler will help reduce the 475 pounds of food waste each person creates every year. The Food Cycler eliminates the use of drains, venting, or additives used in traditional composting process and is claimed to be completely odorless, noiseless, and cost-effective. Through a simple four step process, food (cooked or …