Its seems like a new indoor gardening system debuts every week, each one promising some revolutionary step forward in growing edibles with ease. There’s no doubt that certain innovations can make a big difference in keeping indoor plants alive, especially for those of us who don’t have the greenest of thumbs, like timed grow lights and self-watering systems. But what makes a growing system truly stand out these days? The Calla by 4Senses is a good example, with a highly compact, minimalist look and a modular design that makes it effortless to use.
If you’ve got lots of windows and plenty of space, spreading out a bunch of herb pots is no big deal, but try to grow more than one or two plants in a tiny apartment and you’ll quickly realize why space-saving designs are so in demand. If you’re particularly busy and have a hard time remembering to water your plants, it gets even harder to keep a pot of basil or chives from turning brown within a week. The Calla places six small planters around a lily-shaped base with integrated lighting shining down from the underside of the ‘petals.’
It’s a hydroponic system, so there’s no soil required, and it even has a built-in water irrigation system operated by a pump to reproduce the cycle of alternating high humidity and drought that helps herbs thrive. Small nutrient sticks included with the system can be added to each pot every two months to add the nitrogen, phosphate and potassium the plants need. Since it has its own light, you don’t even have to place it in the window – just put it on any available surface in your home. If you don’t cook and don’t care about herbs but still want some easy-to-maintain greenery, you can sub other types of plants like houseplants and flowers.
What if you don’t want six pots? Well, you don’t have to use them all. The modularity aspect allows you to remove however many you want, leaving just two, three or four if that’s all you need. A flashing light will remind you to fill the water tank when needed, and the integrated light turns off automatically at night. It even mimics nature with a light cycle that mimics the sunrise and sunset, set on whatever schedule is convenient for you. That means if you work odd hours, you can set the Calla by your bedside table to wake you up with light in the morning instead of an alarm clock.
The Calla system is currently raising funds for mass production on Kickstarter, ending on July 7th. Back it now and choose from a variety of rewards, or wait until it’s widely available next March. Get more details at the Kickstarter page.