Urban farms are high-tech farms that typically are setup in buildings in urban areas. Produce is grown in stacks in many cases with no soil or sunlight. These farms utilize artificial lighting, climate control and in many cases hydroponics.
Hydroponics involves suspending plants in a medium such as gravel, wool or perlite (a form of volcanic glass). The roots are immersed in a solution of nutrient-rich water. The nutrients and water that are not consumed by the roots can be recycled, rather than being lost into the soil. A constant flow of air is maintained to supply carbon dioxide to the plants.
It is now possible to tailor the temperature, humidity, lighting, airflow and nutrient conditions to get the best productivity out of plants year round; anywhere in the world. The technology of hydroponics allows almost any kind of plant to be grown in nutrient-rich water, from root crops like radishes and potatoes to fruit such as melons and even cereals like maize.
Whilst the vertical farming production is far higher than the conventional farming, it is capital intensive and the cost of running these farms are significantly high as well. To be profitable, it is extremely important to plan the production well, track the crops intensively and monitor the expensive lighting and their effectiveness. Collecting the large quantity of data and analyzing them to arrive at informed and intelligent decisions is facilitated by farmNXT™.
Urban Farming Features:
- Production planning
- Budget preparation
- Cost monitoring
- Labor/task management
- Artificial light planning and tracking
- Yield forecasts
- Fertigation planning and tracking
- Plant protection program
- Inventory management
- Climate data tracking
- Post-harvest/pack house tracking
- Crop/variety performance