Scandinavian design meets automated growing in the Auk indoor garden
After attracting more than 15,000 growers across 10 countries since its 2021 launch, the Auk indoor garden is now on its way to the US for the promise of year-round herbs, greens and tomatoes direct from the kitchen countertop.
Auk's semi-automated indoor growing system is the brainchild of Marius Abel, who was "unsatisfied with other options on the market" so decided to build his own. The EverGrow system centers on proprietary algorithms for system automation, a full-spectrum LED growing light designed to mimic natural sunlight, and a three-part nutrition system which blends essential minerals "that plants need to flourish."
The countertop veggie patch is produced in Europe with sustainability in mind, being put together using aluminum, real wood and biocomposite plastic. And "to further minimize our climate footprint, we refurbish all end-of-life units to reuse old components," said the company in a press statement. "Even the plastic is reground." Each device is reported to run on as little as 6 kWh per month.
Unlike many crowdfunded solutions, the Auk setup allows growers to plant their own seeds so they're not tied into a potentially expensive cycle of restocking pods. Or the company offers more than 25 pre-tested seed varieties including basil, cilantro, chives, cheery tomato and chili pepper. Either way, these are sown in six open-air pots filled with a growing medium made from coconut husks.
Nutrient bottles are placed at the base of the 2.4-liter easy-view water tank, which is topped up ahead of power on. NFC chips are available for seeds purchased from the company, which "tells Auk what's being grown, and what conditions they need," or there are controls on the device itself.
The system delivers a regular supply of water and nutrients to the base of each pot, the adjustable-height LED array needs to be positioned about 4 inches above the plants, and raised manually as they grow. Apart from a little housekeeping – such as topping up the tank – the indoor gardener just needs to harvest regularly.
The Auk starter kit is available at a special launch price of US$269 for a limited time, saving growers a hundred bucks. The first batch is due to ship from October 1.
Product page: Auk indoor garden