- Published: Friday, 21 October 2016 09:58
- Sourced by SolutionsTeam
On a rooftop in the heart of Johannesburg, two people pick bright green spinach, tie the large leaves into neat bunches and stack them on a table overflowing with vegetables. These, and vegetable juice cocktails of carrot and spinach, are offered to the guests who have attended the midday launch of a rooftop garden on Hillbrow’s Kotze Street. The garden is made up of two dozen rows of metal tunnels covered with shade cloth, which are raised slightly above the concrete roof. The garden uses hydroponic technology the crops are grown without soil in special water solutions. Most conventional rooftop gardens use soil in buckets or sacks, which is heavy, especially when wet.
The Kotze Street rooftop garden also recycles up to 90% of the water it uses a precious saving during a countrywide drought, which has required city residents to cut their water consumption by 15% or face rationing. The plant strains grown hydroponically mature faster than crops in other mediums, which gives the farmers a faster turnaround. Although much depends on the spacing between the rows, generally a one square metre plot can yield between four to nine kilograms of spinach per harvest.
Source: Mail & Guardian