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Aeroponics - A Method to Farm Faster

By Farms.com

Farming throughout the world is as varied as the crops grown, and the methods and techniques can very slightly or dramatically. Recently, a new method has been offered by a research team from Cambridge, Massachusetts. The team from MITs Media Lab, led by Caleb Harper, announced that “aeroponics” can deliver a faster method of crop development.

Aeroponics resembles hydroponics in that both methods remove soil in the developing process of crops. Hydroponics uses water to deliver nutrients to growing crops in order to provide nourishment. Aeroponics goes one step further and suspends crops so their roots are suspended in a fog chamber. The chamber is constantly sprayed with a mist filled with nutrients to help promote growth. The researchers also believe that limiting light access to blue and red in the light spectrum are key factors in growth. These two colors on the light spectrum give crops the ability to develop additional plant material, resulting in a fuller and developed crop.  The rest of the light spectrum only functions as a heat source according to Harper.

Harper and his team believe that this method of farming contributes to crop varieties that are better developed. This is not the only benefit that Harper sees in this method of farming. This could allow local famers of thriving city populations to grow crops without large amounts of land or soil.

Farming is not limited to one style. We choose what works best for our environment. From conventionally grown to organic, hydroponic to aeroponic, the methods are many but what matters most is the end product.

MIT CityFARM provides information on projects like aeroponics developed by MIT Media Lab.

 

 


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We are taking students out to southern Manitoba to Hespler Farms! Farmer Wayne will teach students how he plants and cares for his potato crop and why potatoes are such a unique crop to grow. Teachers, check out your AITC Dashboard for Math'd Potatoes, a potato-themed classroom resource to pair with this tour video. Thank you to Peak of the Market and Penner Farm Services for making this event possible.
 

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