WORDS Celeste Jacobs
Smart planters are the simple – and brilliantly compact – urban gardening solutions we didn’t know we needed.
It’s the best way to be sure of what you’re eating – but growing your own fresh produce often isn’t easy to do in an urban environment. Now, even if you have the absolute minimum of space, smart planters help you make the most of it while also avoiding store-bought herbs and leafy veg in wasteful packaging. Smaller-scale seasonal eating doesn’t get more local and flavourful than this.
1. Click-and-Grow Smart Garden
This nifty product makes use of NASA-inspired Smart Soil, which regulates pH balance, oxygen and humidity levels across the lifecycles of plants. You can take it easy knowing your plants will always receive the right amount of water, light and nutrients at all times. The Smart Garden can grow up to three different plant pods simultaneously, with the option of choosing either pre- seeded plant pods or seedless pods, so you can choose to grow anything you like.
3. Véritable Smart Indoor Garden
This award-winning little machine, designed and made in France, features built-in tech that means you don’t need a green thumb to easily grow and enjoy fresh produce. The LED grow lights are designed specifically to enhance the flavour of herbs and accelerate growth, while Adapt’light technology adjusts the LED intensity according to ambient light. An automatic silent watering system takes care of hydration, with a warning light for when you need to top up the water tank. Choose from more than 70 organic Lingots® (herb and veg refills). Prices start from R3 199 (including 4 refills/Lingots®).
3. Microgarden Hydroponic Herb Garden
If you’re into healthy cooking and fresh produce without the hassle, this gadget offers an all-year-round solution. The clean hydroponic system has a compact footprint, thanks to its sleek design. And inside, herbs and microgreens regulate their own water intake by means of a hydroponic basin, while a fitted LED grow light ensures they get the light they need.