In dry areas like the desert, on mountain tops or on the moon it’s impossible to grow anything. Or is it? A rain in the desert sparks extreme plant growth from the moment the raindrops hit the ground. As long as the ground is irrigated and fertilized, plants will grow during the warm periods of the day. For some regions, the nights are another challenge. In the desert, temperatures drop drastically at night. For farmers, its a big challenge to keep the soil “livable” for plants, and to cope with the drastic temperature differences between day and night. Money is another problem. There needs to be a stable environment for plants to grow in, at low costs. That’s what the Plant-Growing Jelly project seeks to solve.
Conceived of by industrial design students Ruud van Reijmersdal, Tom Slijkhuis, Joppe Spaans and Jeroen Rood, this speculative project consists of a gel which serves as an ideal growing environment for food crops. The gel contains all the vital nutrients for a plant to grow, and insulates it from extremes of temperatures. Isolated the plant from the outside world could enable plants to grow anywhere, even on the moon. This enriched environment would attractive for mass-production, as fruits and vegetables could grow faster, earlier, and take up less space than traditional methods.
Want to learn more about the inspiration and specifics for this project? Read the project report.