Hydroponic vegetable growing innovation
Local entrepreneur Wynand Bezuidenhout has launched his hydroponic vegetable growing system called Grow Machines. Developed through his skills as a qualified engineer, Grow Machines is a pioneering system in South Africa which enables growers to produce large or small crops of vegetables, flowers or forage without soil.
Based on hydroponic technology, the Grow Machine systems do not require soil or ideal environmental conditions to ensure successful growth. Based on the Nutrient Film Technique (NFT), a very shallow stream of water containing dissolved nutrients required for plant growth is re-circulated past the bare roots of plants in a watertight gully or channel within the Grow Machines framework.
According to Grow Machines, their systems and hydroponic plants offer the market an energy efficient vegetable growing solution, cost efficiency in terms of seeding cost versus purchasing produce incurring transport, packaging and refrigeration costs as well as reduced carbon footprint on large scale farming.
“Our systems are soilless and hence do not make use of any dirt or organic matter to support the plants. This presents a huge cost advantage in the sense that it is not necessary for growers to buy and transport expensive growing aids such as soil or other hydroponic mediums. Just this cost cutting alone can make the difference between being successful or not in your vegetable growing, whether home or commercial.”
With Grow Machines, growers can produce a variety of non-tuber plants, flowers, vegetables and fruit including lettuce, herbs, spinach, zucchini, patty pans, rocket, strawberries, chilies, beans, peas, tomatoes, cucumber, peppers, broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, to name a few.
Grow Machines offers ongoing training, maintenance, seedling and products to both home based and corporate clientele to ensure sustained organic vegetable growing systems which produce good, cost effective crops to pave the way to self-sufficiency.
For more information on Grow Machines click here.
We spoke to Wynand Bezuidenhout, listen to the Podcast here: