A: We will send you everything you need to get started. Each starter kit comes with the metal Living Wall mobile cart, pots and felt bags, initial supply of proprietary soil, organic seedlings, recirculating irrigation system and timer, and planting, care and harvesting instructions. We will deliver the Harvest Wall to your home and make sure everything is set up and working properly. We can either deliver the wall pre-planted (for an extra fee) or you can choose to do the planting. Our nutrient dense soil blend contains bio char and organic fertilizers for long-term soil fertility, and you will receive monthly packet of organic fertilizers and soil amendments along with organic seedlings as you need them. All you need to do is pick the specific wall size you’d like and we’ll take care of the rest.
A: In summer they need water every day. Once it cools off in the winter months, they need watering every 3-4 days. You can tell it needs water when the surface soil in the pots is dry and the outer leaves get droopier than normal. It's best to water before they get this way, but they're pretty resilient. During the rainy season, you will still need to water as the rain is not getting deep inside the pots where the roots are growing.
A:Everything in the wall(s) is frost hardy and can handle light frosts, which you probably will have occasionally throughout the winter months. Just face the wall south or southwest so it gets the best possible light. If you get heavy frosts, shift the radicchios and escaroles to the top--they actually get better after freezing temperatures, they get sweeter (sugar acts as antifreeze in plants). The top row has the most exposure to cold. The program has been set up to provide harvesting year-round so that you will always be receiving produce that will thrive in the season that it is being delivered to you.
A: Start harvesting outer leaves as soon as you can no longer resist. Generally this is when the plant has 6-8 leaves on it. Continue harvesting outer leaves until you are ready to plant the next round. They don't need daily harvesting - if you over-graze, the lettuces won't have enough leaf area to regenerate. There's an optimal rate of harvesting that depends on the growth rate of the plants. In winter when they're growing slowly, harvest less frequently. It's usually better to cut leaves from the plants near their base with a pair of clippers or scissors, rather than pinching and breaking them off. If you don't harvest, the outer leaves will start getting tattered and ratty-looking, but the plants will continue to grow. Once you are ready to plant the next round of seedlings, you can harvest the whole plants.
A:Generally, the seedlings are intended to be harvested for 6-8 weeks once they are ready. During the short winter months, this time period may extend to 8-10 weeks. We will ship you a new supply of seedlings automatically, based on the harvesting time frame of the seedlings in your wall. Sometimes, a plant will “bolt” which means it develops a pronounced cone shape and looks like it’s trying to bolt or escape from the pot. This happens if the seedling has become too stressed from lack of water, excessive heat (as in summer time), or is finished its harvesting time period. Lettuces will start to become bitter as they bolt. Most lettuces will start bolting at about 3 months, even if you're giving them plenty of water, it's just what they're programmed to do.
A: The purpose of the 2-sided Harvest wall is to provide for ongoing harvesting with no down time (generally 2 weeks) between seedling refresh and harvesting. The idea is to have 1 side of the wall holding new grown seedlings and the other side containing more mature plants that can handle sustained harvesting and still look beautiful. It also provides a living wall that is beautiful to look at year-round. In the Summer, another option is to put herbs, tomatoes, peppers, and sun-loving plants on the sunny south or west side, and lettuces and leafy greens on the other side. That way, the leafy greens get morning sun, but will be in partial shade during the hottest time of day.
A:Each seedling receives a dose of bT (bacterial strain preventing fungus gnat and mosquito larvae growth) into the potting soil when they are planted. It will defend the seedlings against most soil insects like fungus gnats, and also kills mosquito larvae in tank water. White gnats near the base of the seedlings could be whiteflies rather than fungus gnats, but bT might control both. You can control whiteflies and aphids with soap sprays --1 tsp blue Dawn dish soap or Ivory dish soap mixed in a quart pump spray bottle with 1 qt warm water and 1 tsp vegetable oil, shake and spray. Soap surfactants cover breathing pores and suffocate insects. This solution of soap spray works with all insects. Another key advantage of an Organic Mobile Living Wall is the elimination of a “garden bed” for a rodent to dig underneath and eat your produce. Our tests have shown that the Organic Edible Living Walls are generally rodent and pest free.
A: We will be providing a pre-selected seasonal offering of organic produce, herbs, and edible flowers. Each month, we will notify you of the available seasonal variety where you have the option to pre-select which varieties you would like. If you are a spinach lover and don’t like kale - you can customize the order so it fits your personal taste.
A:This will depend on the frequency and quantity with which you harvest. If you are a lover of all things green then going with the larger Family Farmer system with 2 sides will be most appropriate. Typically a 33 pot system should feed a family of 4 with moderate sampling (2-3 times/week) of the wall.