Over a decade ago, a brilliant American horticulturist by the name Tim Blank, invented the first vertical aeroponic food growing system which could be used not only by professional growers, but also by schools, restaurants, urban farms as well as by the residential market.
With a “food-for-all” mission at heart, the Tower Garden® aeroponic system was originally developed in the USA to create successful sustainable urban farms, one farmer at a time!
This revolutionary food growing technology allows not only a 95% water economy, but also an average of 75% space-saving, while delivering up to 50% crop yield increase.
A Tower Garden only takes 1 m² of space and can grow up to 44 plants at the same time!
These aeroponic towers also produce vegetables, fruits and herbs featuring 35% to 60% more nutrients than their counterparts grown in the soil. Rather than bragging by advocating the nutritional superiority of our crop, we give the proof by publishing an extensive scientific comparative study available under the ‘beyond organic‘ section of our website.
Contrary to hydroponics, aquaponics, and geoponics, aeroponics does not require a growing medium. When it comes to hydroponics and aquaponics, the roots of the plants are immersed at all times in water. With geoponics, which is the proper way to refer to conventional farming and gardening, the roots are buried in soil.
However, in the world of aeroponics, the roots are simply dangling in the air! The word “aeroponic” comes from the Greek “aero” which means “air”, and “ponos”, which translates by “labor”.
With aeroponics, the roots of the plants hang in the air within a protected semi-closed environment (inside the tower in our case) and are being sprayed at regular intervals by a nutrient solution.
We use a natural mineral solution specifically formulated for our towers by the name of Aeroponic Power-Gro®, which is diluted in water and stored in the 100 liter reservoir located at the base of the tower.
The reservoir is equipped with a low wattage submersible pump which draws the nutrient solution all the way to the top of the tower. Such liquid solution is then funneled through a special device, allowing it to drizzle down the tower while gently massaging the roots with nutrients on its way back down to the reservoir. Using a timer, the pump is programmed to be on for 3 minutes, and off for 12 minutes, 24 hours a day. The roots are therefore only being fed nutrients for 12 minutes each hour, and just hang in the air the rest of the time inside the hollow structure of the tower!
In today’s context, there is almost a food label for everything: Organic, Natural, GMO free, MSG free, Shade Grown (for coffee), Fair Trade etc. At Ibiza Farm, we do believe in agricultural transparency which is the reason beyond why we are outraged by the inexistence of label regulation concerning the origin of the fertilizers used in commercial food. As it stands, over 90% of the vegetable eaten by vegans and vegetarians are grown using animal fecal matter as a source of nutrients! A very large percentage of nonorganic fruits and vegetables are being fertilized with ‘human poop’, euphemistically and dishonestly labeled as biosolids (which are basically sewage sludge fertilizers). By the same token, when shopping in a regular supermarket, Muslims and Jews may end up unknowingly eating fruits and vegetables grown using pig manure! Consumers should have the right to be informed!
We do acknowledge that animal-based fertilizers are a very powerful and viable source of nutrients. However, whether organic or not, the majority of all commercial fertilizers are produced from factory farming. This is why for those like us who stand against the abusive world of intensive animal farming, we prefer to use mineral nutrients for aeroponics and plant-based fertilizers for conventional organic farming.
We love to farm with our aeroponic towers knowing the source of what we give to our plants in terms of nutrients!
Tower Garden® technology is also the only aeroponic system which can be used outdoors and handle a storm. Of course, for those residing in areas where it freezes in the winter, Tower Garden equipment can be used inside using a grow light kit.
For our own farm, we had originally built a metal structure to stretch windbreaker tarps around the towers because here in Ibiza, we do get extreme winds and crazy island storms… However, in an effort to test the limits of how much ‘beating’ our towers could take, we decided to wait for a few months before stretching our windbreak screens. It turned out that regardless of winds, lighting storms, and violent hailstorms, our towers could take it! We therefore decided to give up on the windbreak mesh fabric idea.
Aside from greenhouse and indoor setups, considering that our aeroponic towers can be used outdoors, they can be set up on a patio, in a backyard, on a rooftop etc. They only require very little energy (which can also be powered by a basic inexpensive solar panel system to operate completely off-the-grid).
Tower Garden® is the perfect option for gardening in drought conditions and water restricted areas. Since the water which we use to mix our nutrients is being recycled constantly in a closed system, we save on average 95% of the water which is normally required with convential soil-based gardening and farming.
Another huge advantage resides in the fact that when crops are grown off the ground, they are much less prone to problems related to pests and fungi. However, with our aeroponic system, when needed, we strictly use organic insecticides and fungicides.
Also, there is much less labor involved than what is required with conventional soil-based gardening: no more weed plaguing in your veggie garden! It is a fully automated system: a true plug-and-plant experience! With Tower Garden, everyone has a green thumb!
These aeroponic towers are also the perfect option for elderly individuals and those suffering from back related injuries since it is no longer necessary to bend over to care for the crop.
Ibiza Farm S.L. is the first vertical aeroponic farm ever set up in Europe using Tower Garden® patented technology. We are proud to be distributors for Tower Garden® in the USA, Canada and Europe…. and yes, as of 2017, Tower Garden aeroponic systems are now finally available in Europe!
To learn more about gardening with an Tower Garden aeroponic towers, visit us at www.ibiza.farm . Alternatively, from May to September, we invite you to participate in person to one of our bimonthly workshops here, on the White Island!