Sunday, March 30, 2014

Grow Your Own: A Raised Bed and Tower Garden Experiment

Soil or aeroponics?  Why choose?  There are advantages to both.  In Daniel's case he is running an experiment in his front yard to see which one he likes best.  

As spring begins and the planting starts, he has two systems of growing.  One, a raised bed he designed and the other a tower garden that is a pilot system for a school gardening program.  In each system he plans to produce a yield that will provide healthy meals for his family.

Originally, the plan was to build the raised bed in the back yard, high enough off the ground so that he could work standing up.  The direct sunlight was better in the front yard, and because of that we trimmed some hedge and built it by the driveway.  By converting a sprinkler head into a bubbler irrigation system the bed is now watered on a timer.  

Daniel was also gifted a tower garden to experiment with as a pilot project for a local school's gardening program.  This is a perfect opportunity to see side by side how different grow systems work.  The tower garden is a soil-less system.  The nutrients are carried to the plant roots by an oxygenated water system the pumps water to the top of the tower from a storage basin at the bottom.  It is on a 15 min on/off timer.  

Placed side by side in the front yard, these two systems are going to provide an excellent opportunity to measure the success of two different grow styles.  Ventura Cooperative is happy to help Daniel as he endeavors to grow his own food.  Permaculture begins here, front yard gardening!

Learn more about Tower Gardens here.  

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