Considering that food insecurity is a huge global concern, a new Israeli technology that allows crops to grow in less space and with less water is especially important – and potentially lifesaving.
GreenWall, which was founded in 2009 by engineer and gardening pioneer Guy Barness, has developed an advanced technology with which it erects gardens that line the walls, both inside and outside of buildings, taking up less space compared to conventional gardens. GreenWall provides fertile soil, which is capable of growing almost every plant species with proper care. “We want to give an urban person an opportunity to grow plants in their home, using modern technology,” Barness tells NoCamels.
How does it work? Well, vertical gardens seemingly defy gravity, and that’s why the plants are densely planted in a vertical planting system inside small modular units, preventing the crops from falling out. These small pots can then be removed or replaced to refresh or change the design of the garden. The water reaches the cell of each plant through a special system, operated by a computer. In order to crop the yield, the wall is temporarily taken down and laid out at a horizontal position.
GreenWall uses cutting-edge drip irrigation technology developed by Israeli company Netafim, known for having pioneered the technique. GreenWall also developed its monitors, sensors and controls with the help of Israeli water-management company Galcon.
The technology behind the vertical structures helps control and conserve water. In comparison to conventional crop-growing methods, the vertical garden only takes 1,500 liters of water to produce one kilogram of rice, as opposed to the standard 3,000 liters. Environmentalists claim that vertical gardens may be the solution to growing crops in cities as well as in areas that are scarce in water, food and energy.