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Vertical Farming

Updated on August 8, 2011

Vertical Farming - Greenhouse Farming

Vertical farming is a proposal to build high rise buildings within urban areas to enable the growing of food crops to help avoid the impending food shortage which is envisaged in the near future. It is thought that by the year 2050 the worlds population will have grown by a further 3 billion people and with more land needed than is available to grow the crops needed to feed everybody, ideas have to be considered to how these extra crops can be grown. Vertical farming could provide year round food production and better crop production, being able to yield more produce by area like for like compared to traditional horizontal farming. To put in a nutshell vertical farming is like a high rise greenhouse, sometimes having the label farmscrapers.

Vertical Farming Introduction - Interview with Dickson Despommier

A Farm In A Greenhouse ? - Is vertical farming plausable ?

The basics behind indoor farming are nothing new when you consider, for example, tomatoes and such have been nurtured in greenhouses for decades, however to move forward the basics to indoor farming have to progress and utilise modern technologies if they are to benefit the future increases in world population. The idea of a farmscraper in a central urban area may not be that far away, with the intention of being very cheap to build, whilst safe to operate, being very eco friendly and having numerous other advantages such as no crop failures due to weather enabling year round harvests and eliminating other pollutants such as emmissions from farm machinery and transportation, a vast reduction of pesticides and fertilizers perhaps a farm in a greenhouse isn't such a bad concept.....

Vertical Farming Advantages

No crop failures due to weather / climate or pests

Vertical farming uses no fertilizers, herbiscides or pesticides


Hydroponics is the name given to a method for growing plants without the use of soil, instead using mineral nutrient solutions to promote growth. In the 19th century it was found that plants did not actually need soil for growth and that the soil only acted as a channel for the plants to feed from the mineral nutrients they found in water. The history of hydroponics dates well back, and this is not a new technology with the earliest published work being in 1627 although hydroponics have moved on a long way since then.

For a great UK based website regarding hydroponics please visit hydroponics plant growing

For a more in depth article regarding hydropnics please see the wikipedia article - Hydroponics

Vertical Farming Virtual Tour - Take a virtual look at what vertical farming could look like

Vertical Farming Pictures

Just imagine this !

Just imagine one of these popping up in your city centre, very futuristic looking, but are these the farms of the future ? It is thought that to feed the pending population growth, land bigger than the country of Brazil will be needed if we continue to use existing horizontal farming techniques and with 80% of available land for crop growing already being used the maths just don't add up to continue as we are doing, so the prospect of seeing one of these types of high rise farmscrapers is becoming more plausable day to day.

Images for this page have been sourced from - Vertical farming

Vertical Farming - Is This The Answer ?

What are your thoughts on vertical farming, is this the answer to the pending food shortage the world faces or is this just a pie in the sky notion which will fade out in time. We maybe all need to think about where the food is going to come from as the worlds population booms and maybe you have another suggestion. Feel free to leave your comments and don't worry you don't have to be a registered squidoo member to participate

Alternatively scroll down towards the bottom of the page and start your own discussion and ask your own questions or start your own debate on this subject on the group discussion board

Is vertical farming the answer to bigger better food crops ?

Vertical Farming In Action - An existing vertical farm

More Vertical Farming Advantages

Crop production year round and better yields. One vertical farm acre is, on average equal to around 4-6 horizontal acres depending on crop. For strawberries the ratio is 1:30 !

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Plant Some Feedback

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    • Steve Dizmon profile image

      Steve Dizmon 6 years ago from Nashville, TN

      It is an interesting concept whose time may not be completely right yet.

    • wolfie10 profile image

      wolfie10 6 years ago

      very nice lens.

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      good work

    • Michey LM profile image

      Michey LM 7 years ago

      It really is a special idea to try. I enjoy the lens and I like your pictures and presentation.

    • spritequeen lm profile image

      spritequeen lm 7 years ago

      This is a very interesting concept! Never heard of such a thing, but it's definitely intriguing! Thanks for sharing :-)

    • ChemKnitsBlog2 profile image

      ChemKnitsBlog2 7 years ago

      You learn something new every day! This is something that I had never imagined, and now that I've seen it I think it is fantastic! I'm very proud to bless this lens.

    • profile image

      VincentEllis 7 years ago

      I think the next 50 years are going to be really interesting for the human race

    • profile image

      VincentEllis 7 years ago

      Nice lens!

    • Jack2205 profile image

      Jack 7 years ago

      This is an excellent idea to prevent a food shortage. Blessed by a Squid Angel.

    • GonnaFly profile image

      Jeanette 7 years ago from Australia

      What a fascinating idea - a farmscraper. You couldn't have them too close together though because they would shade each other.

    • Asinka profile image

      Asinka Fields 7 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

      This is a discovery for me - sounds interesting!

    • ajgodinho profile image

      Anthony Godinho 7 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      This is the first time I've heard of this concept, but I think I can see it catch on in the future. People are already preferring home-grown food, so this only helps it move in that direction. **Blessed by a Squid-Angel**

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      Fantastic concept! The vast majority of the world's farmland is currently used to grow livestock feed - not food for human consumption. Becoming vegetarian would free up that land, and end a lot of cruelty.

    • profile image

      lovinhydroponics 7 years ago

      Vertical farming is indeed the true essence of urban agriculture. I believe that this is the best way to produce crops that are not only fresher and delicious but also a lot healthier than those crops grown in soil.

    • don2fuentes profile image

      don2fuentes 8 years ago

      This will be the answer for future problems in supply. With this, transportation cost will also be minimal.

    • don2fuentes profile image

      don2fuentes 8 years ago

      This is the solution to a growing city. Instead of getting produce from far away farms, people in the urban areas would have easy access to farm products, therefore minimizing transport cost and lessens the carbon footprint. thumbs up!

    • Stazjia profile image

      Carol Fisher 8 years ago from Warminster, Wiltshire, UK

      Where suitable farmland is in short supply, this could be an answer. In any case, it's an interesting idea. Blessed by an Angel.

    • mysticmama lm profile image

      Bambi Watson 8 years ago

      Very Cool!

    • mariatjader profile image

      mariatjader 9 years ago

      Great lens, important subject! 5 stars

    • profile image

      julieannbrady 9 years ago

      You have presented some amazing examples of vertical farming -- it is a unique and interesting concept!

    • profile image

      anonymous 9 years ago

      As I understand it you could use this concept also to farming animals. Plus another idea could be to use the roofs of skyscrapers. But that's just me thinking out loud!

      Great and informative lens :)

    • Swisstoons profile image

      Thomas F. Wuthrich 9 years ago from Michigan

      An extremely interesting lesn! Really captures the imagination. 5-starring, favoriting and lensrolling this one to my Laftovers and Best Buds lenses. Gottgo peruse your profile to see what other interesting stuff you've got. And thank you for joining my FC.

    • profile image

      anonymous 9 years ago

      I have my garden/farm growing horizontal, but in pots mostly. Like the vertical concept and one can incorporate principles by stacking Square foot gardens.

    • Ramkitten2000 profile image

      Deb Kingsbury 9 years ago from Flagstaff, Arizona

      I just put together a lens on Biosphere 2. I don't recall if they used verticle farming in their "Human Experiment," during which the Biospherians, as they were called, who were locked inside for two years, weren't able to grow enough to be well-fed. Really interesting lens with great images.

    • oneskms profile image

      oneskms 9 years ago

      Many thanks for the link Danny - you grasped this well before most people had even heard of the idea (I see Sept'05 in the post)[in reply to dannystaple]

    • profile image

      dannystaple 9 years ago

      Hi there, you were interested in my article on the subject - Vertical Farm. It is fairly old now - but I may have to fix it up a little now.

    • TheInfamous7 profile image

      TheInfamous7 9 years ago

      A Splendid Lens!! Great Info and excellent design! Blessed

    • profile image

      dannystaple 9 years ago

      This is a topic I have a lot of time for - I have looked into this before and would love to see these being built around London. I considered that solar powered robot harvesting could make these even more efficient. 5*. Would you like to add it to my Growing Food group?

    • carny profile image

      carny 9 years ago

      This looks like an interesting and modern concept. I wonder if cities will adapt this in the near future.

      5* and SquidAngel blessing for you :)

    • chefkeem profile image

      Achim Thiemermann 9 years ago from Austin, Texas

      Impressive lens - 5*s and a hearty SquidAngel Blessing! :)

    • Teacher Adez7 profile image

      Teacher Adez7 9 years ago

      Very nice and blessed as well! :)

    • thepartyanimal2 profile image

      thepartyanimal2 9 years ago

      Now that is very cool - Great information - I give you 5 stars vertical for a job well done

    • Stazjia profile image

      Carol Fisher 9 years ago from Warminster, Wiltshire, UK

      This is a fascinating topic and you have explained and illustrated it really well.

    • cineteq profile image

      John Parr 9 years ago from Montreal

      Outstanding information, thanks for letting us know about this subject!

    • Ramkitten2000 profile image

      Deb Kingsbury 9 years ago from Flagstaff, Arizona

      Kind of reminds me of Biosphere II near Tucson, Arizona. (We're from Flagstaff, so we drove down there for a tour a year or so ago. Been there?) Really interesting topic. Five stars. Thanks!

    • Dianne Loomos profile image

      Dianne Loomos 9 years ago

      If the buildings aren't too expensive to build, it seems like a plausible solution. To have a vertical farm in the middle of a big city would seem to solve a lot of problems such as transportation costs. Like mulberry, I'd be concerned about the taste. Tomatoes from the grocery store are a poor excuse for tomatoes.

    • RuthCoffee profile image

      Ruth Coffee 9 years ago from Zionsville, Indiana

      Perhaps vertical farming is indeed the answer? Sounds like we need to get creative! The only other thing I can really say is I hope that the taste of such crops is better than the hydroponic tomatoes you see at the grocery. Those are almost unrecognizable as tomatoes.


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