Rooftop Farming - Step by Step Guide, Importance & Benefits


Date: 17-May,2021Last Updated: 26-May,2021
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Rooftop farming has become quite a trend these days around our neighborhoods, especially during the lockdown!

As some of us might even call this terrace farming, since we are farming on our terraces or rooftops, but actually, that is a whole different process of agriculture practiced in the sloppy or the slanting plains of Asia and Africa.

So, here we'll explore more of the urban agriculture method of Rooftop Farming. So before that, for them,

What is Rooftop Farming?

Rooftop Farming is the method of growing vegetables, herbs, and fruits atop houses or apartments due to the city's lack of space.

Though mostly rooftop vegetable farming was more or less of a hobby for most, it has now turned into a commercial endeavor as the demand for organic, and fertilizer free vegetables doubled, especially during the Covid times.

And for those who doesn't look upto the commercial angle, it can be an excellent stress buster and leisure activity. This will also benefit the people who want to know exactly where the food they eat comes from.

Sounds Interesting?

Let's move onto the steps involved in creating a rooftop garden or rooftop farm.

How to Start Rooftop Farming?

Rooftop farming or terrace gardening is becoming very popular in cities, thanks to both space constraints as well as the citizens' need for green environments. It is only natural, then, for open rooftops and terraces in cities, especially the Indian metropolitan ones, to serve as healthy, alternative spaces to grow a garden.

So, without further ado,

1) Ensure the structural strength of the Terrace or Rooftop

Make sure that your home's terrace is strong enough to handle the pressure and weight of crates, soil, manure, and potted plants. Ensure that there are no cracks, crevices, or harmful moss growth in the space set for agriculture.

2) Choose the right vegetables and herbs

After ensuring the stability of your terrace's structure for rooftop farming, next is to pick the best crop for organic vegetables that suits your city's climate as well as your terrace's space constraints.

Always select to grow multiple vegetables to increase the chances of success and diversity. The most common vegetables picked by the urban farmers and agriculture enthusiasts are Tomatoes and Green Chilli!

The other vegetables chosen are Carrots, Cauliflower, Ladies Finger, Cucumbers, Eggplants (Brinjal), Lettuce, and Onions. Some folks also choose baby potatoes as well, but it requires much more than a green thumb; you need to have some extra knowledge in farming or cultivation.

Since most of us, Indians, believe in Ayurveda and Vastu, it's really good if you include herbs such as Tulsi ( Holy Basil) or mints, which are really easy to grow.

3) Proper Infrastructure

Yes, you guessed it right, with the exception of sunlight, you'll have to set up an infrastructure for everything else.

a) Water

Water is the most important factor. As plants, especially the ones that grow produce, need extra water and a lot of it. Hence assemble a water sprinkler and a drainage system to get rid of the needless ones. It is imperative to have a drainage or pipe system to regulate the overflowing water, lest it can cause the terrace to flood out and affect the structural integrity of the terrace or rooftop farm.

And if you are living or are settled down in a region that's more aligned to hot climate zones, the water will be a problem. There you'll have to work on plants, vegetables, and herbs that thrive on less water.

b) Containers, Pots, Carriage Beds or Grow Bags

The next on the list is the place where you grow your produce,

Well, obviously, you can't just put soil all across the terrace or rooftop, well technically you can,

but you shouldn't!

To facilitate better growth, you have to construct containers or beds to accommodate the soil and plant the seeds there. You can also use pots for making flowers or small shrubs or plants like green chilli. And these containers or beds will be extra helpful if you ever need to move to a new home.

c) Protection

Fresh organic vegetables and fruits always call for the attention of pests and birds. Since these are grown atop your home, rooftop farming spaces cannot be monitored every single time, right. Hence constructing a dome or cover with nets, glass, or transparent plastic sheets would be a great choice for protecting your rooftop farm and gardens.

However, you should make sure that it will get enough air and facilitate the movement of bees or other agents of pollination.

4) Soil and Manure

The perfect type of soil depends upon the vegetable or fruit you want to grow on your rooftop farm. You can always enlist the help of agriculture offices (there's one in every city, village, or panchayat across India). You should also be careful of the manure used, remember not to fall for advertising, and always go for organic ones.

Benefits of Rooftop Farming and Organic Produce

1) You reap what you sow. Period!

Yes, we couldn't emphasize it better; hence we used the popular phrase. Unlike buying every food produce from the markets, here you'll have a hundred percent guarantee that whatever you eat is grown by you.

2) Stress Buster and Motivation Booster

Growing your own food has other benefits too. Growing your own food gives tremendous satisfaction and motivates you to do better in other areas of your life as well. Rooftop Farming brings about a certain sense of discipline to your life too!

3) Healthy Lifestyle

Organic food cause fewer health problems and add to your vitality and energy levels. Thus with a healthy body and healthy mind, you'll certainly be strides ahead of your peers!

4) Family Time

Rooftop Farming and Terrace gardens can be a great time and place for the whole family to come together and spend some quality moments and make beautiful memories for the future.

5) Eco-Friendly Spaces in Urban Neighborhoods

More green and livelier space within the concrete jungle is surely a welcome change and will certainly inspire many others to think about investing heavily in an eco-friendly lifestyle.

Besides, if you are part of an apartment complex, you can always ask for the help of your residential association and have a jolly good time making a community garden with your neighbors and the community in general.

This can foster great relationships and help the children to make friends, and make them understand the value of environment and nature right from an early age.

So, folks, that's pretty much our take on Rooftop Farming, especially Rooftop Vegetable Farming, so guys, do share your thoughts on the comment section if we missed out on anything.

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