At Oakland Urban Growers we pride ourselves on being at the forefront of agricultural technology. We are committed to constantly pushing the boundaries in tech in order to grow food that tastes better and is grown in a more efficient and sustainable way. By working closely with schools, developers, engineers, and environmental scientists we aim to not only remain at the forefront in agritech, but to pioneer it.
The most important technology being utilized in our greenhouses is, without a doubt, our automated climate control system. We start by connecting all of our ventilation, fans, lights, heaters, irrigation lines, and hydroponic equipment to one central system that controls everything. Then we add sensors that monitor temperature, humidity, soil moisture, light rays, pH, and EC, and we even cameras that monitor plant growth and conditions. Finally, we program our control equipment to respond to our monitoring equipment in order to CONSTANTLY maintain optimal growing conditions. All of this can be remotely monitored from a cell phone or a computer and alerts are provided in case of unusual conditions.
One of the latest and greatest trends in agriculture is hydroponics. Hydroponics is a subset of hydroculture, the method of growing plants without soil, using mineral nutrient solutions in a water solvent. Terrestrial plants may be grown with only their roots exposed to the mineral solution, or the roots may be supported by an inert medium, such as perlite or gravel. The nutrients in hydroponics can come from an array of different sources; these can include but are not limited to byproduct from fish waste, duck manure, or normal nutrients. Our favorite method of hydroponics is NFT (Nutrient Film Technique). By allowing channels of plants with exposed roots to have consistent access to moving water and a specialized nutrient solution, we give them everything they need to thrive. Additionally, we reuse our water and track the rate at which we lose it through evaporation to maximize our retention rate and save water!
Check back with us to see how we’re constantly evolving or come visit us for a tour!