If you're an urban dweller and want to grow your own food, you usually don't have much to work with. A typically tiny balcony offers just enough space to either set up an edible garden, or a nice little table and chair where you can sit outside. With Skyfarm, you don't have to decide between either — now you can grow your arugula and eat it, too.
Skyfarm is a vertical gardening concept from German designer Manuel Dreesmann. It arose from Dreesmann's awareness that as cities continued to grow and buildings continued to get taller, it left people with fewer backyards but more balconies.
Skyfarm fills the need for society to reduce consumption by growing food closer to home — and in fact, it brings the food right outside your door and above your head.
The design consists of sleek, molded acrylic spheres called Skypots, which can be attached to a ceiling or beam at adjustable heights. A retractable handle allows you to pull the Skypot down to tend or harvest your plants, and another pull sends it back up overhead. The handle has space for you to write the name of the plant so you can identify it "up in the sky."
Each Skypot has a white base to cover the soil and a transparent cutout for the plant to grow through. It seems most suitable for shallow-rooted plants, such as salad greens, which also happen to be ideal for balconies that don't get a lot of sun. I think Skypots are practical inside the home as well, especially if you lack windowsills or countertops but still want fresh herbs just a snip away.
(Images: Manuel Dreesmann)