Just in time for winter, IKEA has introduced a hydroponic cultivation kit so you can comfortably grow your favorite herbs and veggies indoors. Currently, the kit is only available in Europe, but keep your fingers crossed, North America.
The Swedish retail giant has debuted the Krydda/Växer collection, which can help you get started on your own hydroponic garden. Hydroponic systems, unlike traditional gardens, use only water to grow plants. Nutrients are added to the water to replace the nutrients that would normally be found in soil. The system is more adaptable since light, water and nutrients can easily be adjusted for a variety of growing conditions, making the process less dependent on water and suitable year-round.
The Krydda/Växer collection is also great for first-time growers since it helps avoid problems like under- or over-watering, lack of nutrients or pests. The hydroponic system is available in a variety of options, including a nursery kit that features small holes that enable seeds to develop, and a cultivation kit that grows larger, fully-grown plants. The system comes with plant inserts, artificial lights, and nutrients so gardeners can plan their indoor garden from start to finish.
Amateur growers can choose from 18 different types of herbs and greens, including lettuce, arugula, and chard, or even chicory, amaranth, and mizuna. To care for plants, growers simply place them in damp nutrient plugs in a nursery unit. After plants have developed, they can be transferred to a cultivation unit, where they are fed fertilized water until they grow into edible greens.
IKEA is not the only company commercializing a hydroponic system. The Calla, which raised more than $85,000 on Kickstarter, is a countertop hydroponic system that works with very little maintenance, and Everblume is developing a closed hydroponic unit that adjusts air temperature. Given IKEA's mass appeal though, the Krydda/Växer collection will undoubtedly make hydroponic growing systems much more popular.
The only downside to the IKEA system is that it is an IKEA system, therefore, be ready to assemble the kit since it is sold flat packed. The inconvenience is minimal, however, since the price for a whole grow kit with 16 pots is just £103/€153.