Our Produce & Hydroponics
AquaTerra Farm hydroponically grows non-GMO produce all year long in Cleveland, Georgia. Our fresh products are more nutritious, lasts longer and tastes better than produce typically purchased in grocery stores.
> Lettuces - Romaine, Butterhead, Summer Crisp, Greenleaf, Red Oakleaf
> Leafy Greens - Kale, Swiss Chard, Arugula, Spinach
> Herbs - Basil, Cilantro, Parsley (Italian & Curly), Chives, Mint, Oregano, Sage, Rosemary,
Datil Pepper, Habanero Pepper
> Vegetables - Eggplant
New Crops coming in 2020
> Microgreens (spicy and mild)
> Yellow Squash
Hydroponic growing use nutrients dissolved in water (nutrient solution) and does not use soil. The benefits that we realize by using this efficient growing method along with greenhouses include:
> Minimize Water Use typically using less than 10% of the water compared to field grown crops
> Minimize Pests allowing for exclusive use of organic pest control methods
> Faster Growth and higher yield of up to 300% versus traditional farming
> Cleaner product which is not exposed to soil
The use of greenhouses, also known as controlled-environment agriculture (CEA) adds additional
advantages to the use of hydroponics including:
> Year-round Growing
> Controlled Access
> Cleaner Environment
> Protected Work Environment
Natural light, protected air flow, evaporative cooling and shade cloths are some of the methods used to
safely and efficiently take advantage of this environment for growing.
Organic Pest Control
The combination of hydroponics and greenhouses limits pressures from insects, plant diseases and the
environment. Only organically approved (OMRI) and natural products (e.g., beneficial insects) are used
from propagation to harvest.
The controlled-environment of the greenhouses and the soilless growing with hydroponics makes for clean growing conditions to meet the highest food safety standards. Locally grown limits the amount of handling compared with food from other states reducing chances of contamination. We adhere to strict cleaning and sanitization practices helping us supply the safest, best looking and tasting produce around.
More on Hydroponics
In hydroponics, the nutrients that the plants normally derive from the soil are in the nutrient nutrient solution giving the plants easy access to the elements needed to grow and avoids numerous issues inherit in soil based growing (e.g., pest, inconsistent nutrients, etc.). Aquaponics uses the same hydroponic principles and incorporates fish to provide some of the nutrients – AquaTerra Farm does not utilize Aquaponics.
There are multiple hydroponic techniques that we use depending on the crop. Some of these techniques use inert growing media to give plants structure that they need for roots. The techniques used at AquaTerra include:
> Nutrient Film Technique (NFT) – a “film” of water is constantly run across the bottom of a channel so the roots can receive nutrients and water. Many different channels are available and many of lids for the plants to grow through. Drains at the end of the channels feed the nutrient solution back into a reservoir.
> Deep Water Culture (DWC) – also known as a raft system, this incorporates a “pond” 8-12 inches deep filled with oxygenated nutrient solution with the plants placed in floating boards with their roots suspended in the nutrient solution.
> Grow Bags – Bags filled with an inert media that has a balance of water retention and drainage for the nutrient solution (e.g., perlite, coco coir, bark chips, etc.). Nutrient solution is injected at regular intervals to supply both water and nutrients to the plants.
> Ebb and Flow – A tray holding the plants is flooded and drained with nutrient solution at regular intervals. The nutrient solution is held in a reservoir and recycled.
> Bato Buckets – also known as a Dutch bucket, are filled with a growing medium (e.g., expanded clay pebbles, perlite, coco coir, etc.) and irrigated with nutrient solution at regular intervals. The nutrient solution drains back into a reservoir.