Turns out, not having any dirt to grow fresh produce won’t soil your plans. Hydroponics, the method of cultivating plants without soils, has landed in downtown Birmingham at Yellow Hammer Farms. But, this isn’t your typical landscape.
The news comes after an early September announcement that the company had completed a capital raise of $435,000 through Harvest Returns—an agriculture crowdfunding platform.
The large indoor hydroponic farm, owned and operated by Frank Fitts IV and Jillian Fitts, will be located at 702 Third Avenue North and will feature an indoor grow room as well as a storefront where customers and local restaurants can purchase produce.
I hope you like your greens because they’ll be first on the farm’s grow list later this year. The addition of fruit is planned for a later date.
Where’s the dirt?
Visualize a farm. Do you see things like seeds and crops? Probably so. But what you also may imagine is lots and lots of dirt. Plants have to grow in the ground, after all. Or…do they?
Say hello to hydroponics—a method of growing plants without soil. Yep, no dirt in this set up. Cool, right? Well, this is the method Yellow Hammer Farms will be using, and it gets even cooler because indoor hydroponic farms have some pretty rad benefits. Here are some of them:
- They use 90% less water than traditional farms.
- They allow growers full control over plant environments, which means they can keep out pests and eliminate the need for pesticides.
- They allow growers to provide plants with everything they need to thrive and grow year-round, which means the words “out of season” are a thing of the past.
What hydroponic farms means for Birmingham
Sure, it sounds cool, but what will it actually do for those in Birmingham? Yellow Hammer Farms has two main goals:
- To help improve access to fresh food in the the city of Birmingham by providing fresh, high-quality, sustainably-grown local produce.
- Educate the community on the benefits of sustainable farming.
This means Birmingham will have access to fresh produce down right in our very own city. It also reduces the large distance most produce has to travel to get from farm to table. You know, because it’s local.