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• Vertical farming is cultivating plant
or animal life within a “skyscraper”,
“greenhouse” or on vertically
inclined surfaces.
• This word “vertical farming” was coined by
“Gilbert Ellis Bailey” in 1915 in his book “vertical
• What he meant was not the current meaning as
“He wrote about farming underground with the
use of explosives”.
• Mixed use skyscrapers were proposed and built
by Architect “Ken Yeang”.
• Ecologist “Dickson Despommier” also told about
vertical farming, he argues that it is legitimate for
environmental reasons.
• Vertical farming promotes the mass
cultivation of plant and animal life for
commercial purposes in skyscrapers.
• The skyscraper as “Utopian device” for the
production of unlimited numbers of virgin
sites on a metropolitan location.
• Despommier’s concept of “The Vertical Farm”
emerged in 1999 at Columbia university.
• The purposes of consumption was published
as early as “Life Magazine” in 1909.
•A commercial high-rise farm such as
'The Vertical Farm' has never been
built, yet extensive photographic
documentation and several historical
books on the subject suggest that
research on the subject was not
diligently pursued. New sources
indicate that a tower hydroponicum
existed in Armenia prior to 1951.
•Ken Yeang is perhaps the most widely known architects
that has promoted the idea of the 'mixed-use' Bioclimatic
Skyscraper which combines living units and opportunities
for food production.
•Dickson Despommier, a professor of environmental health
sciences and microbiology at Columbia University in New
York City, modernized the idea of vertical farming in 1999
with graduate students in a medical ecology class.
• Although much of Despommier's suggestions have been
challenged and strongly criticized from an environmental
science and engineering point of view, the idea's
popularization in recent years has been largely the result of
Despommier's assertion that food production can be
•Each floor will have its own watering and nutrient
monitoring systems. There will be sensors for every
single plant that tracks how much and what kinds of
nutrients the plant has absorbed. You'll even have
systems to monitor plant diseases by employing DNA
chip technologies that detect the presence of plant
pathogens by simply sampling the air and using
snippets from various viral and bacterial infections.
It's very easy to do.
•As of 2012, Vertical Harvest is working on
raising funds for an urban, small-scale vertical
farm in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.
•Despommier argues that the technology to
construct vertical farms currently exists. He also
states that the system can be profitable and
effective, a claim evidenced by some preliminary
research posted on the project's website.
•It is suggested that prototype versions of vertical
farms should be created first, possibly at large
universities interested in the research of vertical
farms, in order to prevent failures such as
the Biosphere 2 project in Oracle, Arizona.
•The produce is used to feed the zoos animals while
the project enables evaluation of the systems and
provides an educational resource to advocate for
change in unsustainable land use practices that
impact upon global biodiversity and ecosystem
•In 2012, the world's first commercial vertical farm
was opened in Singapore, developed by Sky Greens
Farms, and is three stories high. They currently have
over 100 towers that stand at nine meters tall.
•A grow light or plant light is an artificial light source,
generally an electric light, designed to stimulate
plant growth by emitting an electromagnetic
spectrum appropriate for photosynthesis. Grow
lights are used in applications where there is either
no naturally occurring light, or where supplemental
light is required. For example, in the winter months
when the available hours of daylight may be
insufficient for the desired plant growth, lights are
used to extend the time the plants receive light.
•Compost is organic matter that has
been decomposed and recycled as
a fertilizer and soil amendment. Compost is a key
ingredient in organic farming. At the simplest level,
the process of composting simply requires making a
heap of wetted organic matter known as green
waste (leaves, food waste) and waiting for the
materials to break down into humus after a period of
weeks or months.
1. The initial phase will be cost intensive, and certain
flaws integrated in the system that may appear
during its initial run can still dampen efforts for its
full maximization.
2. There will be fewer variety of foods to choose
from because not all plants and vegetables are
suitable in a controlled and limited environment.
3. The public will find it hard to reconcile with the
idea of using black water for food production.
• Grow what you want: In demand fruits and veggies can be grown all
year round despite changes in weather
• Know your food is pesticide free: Instead of worrying about
whether or not your food will make you sick, this all organic
approach promises fresh and toxin-free produce
• Reconnect with nature: If you’ve ever had the desire to work the
land, you’re in luck. The title of “urban farmer”•might be a
legitimate occupation in the near future.
• Preserve the environment: Rather than having to venture into the
rainforest and harm the last few remaining untouched parts of the
earth, we can help preserve the environment and grow our food in
• More Affordable Produce: Although start up costs are high, it is a
cost effective model that will save money down the line.