Growing crops underwater inside air-filled biospheres: introducing "Nemo's Garden". 

While enjoying his summer holiday in Italy, Sergio Gamberini (head of the Ocean Reef Group) came up with an extra-ordinary idea: how about we create an underwater greenhouse? And so an alternative solution to grow food for human consumption was born and the project they named Nemo's Garden was launched.

They built five small transparent balloons, sunk them below the surface between 6 and 12 metres deep and fill them with air while underwater. They firmly anchored the balloons to the sea bed, so they wouldn't get away, and planted seeds in special vases inside the 'bubbles'. You may wonder how does one water those crops? It's quite simple: the evaporating sea water condenses on the inner walls of the biospheres, creating a high-humidity environment even up to 85 percent, where crops (like strawberries, beans or salad) can prosper.

Advantages of an underwater greenhouse lie in constant temperature of the surrounding ocean. Also, rough waters could pose problems for underwater crops, but they are, unlike traditional crops, protected from the damages caused by bad weather and harmful vermin or pests.

After 2 years of experimentation the Ocean Reef Group is moving the project to the next level with more biospheres, more designs, more sensors, more cabling, hydroponic culture, more webcams and more crops.

Keeping our fingers crossed, wishing you all the best of luck!

July 8, 2015 Living photo: Ocean Reef

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