New Farming Center in Summerville Transforming The Way We Eat

April 18, 2017, 10:12 am EST | Share:

SUMMERVILLE, SC (MEGAN RIVERS, WTAT-TV) — The sun is rising in a new form of farming right here in the Lowcountry, and some say it’s a whole lot better for the environment.

In the heart of Summerville, there is an up and coming farm that sits in the middle of a neighborhood.

“A traditional farmer would grow in the dirt. Hydroponic farmers grow in the water,” said Stefanie Swackhamer, General Managers of Tiger Corner Farms.

Stefanie and her team at Tiger Corner Farms says their whole operation is one big science experiment.

Evan Aluise, the farm’s chief engineer, says the 40-foot crates allow them to farm in an environmentally friendly way. “Indoor farming gets rid of the use of manure based fertilizers and so you reduce the risk of pathogens to humans,” he said.

Inside each create, lettuce and other leafy plants are blooming at an unbelieveable size.

“The roots hang in the air and get misted every so often, and that’s how they gain their nutrients to be able to grow,” said Swackhamer. They also switch on their LED lights to stimulate the growth of their plants.

One benefit to container farming is the ability to grow plants outside of their traditional season.

“Like lettuce, obviously you can’t grow in the middle of summer here, it’s way too hot outside. In here, everything is humidity controlled, temperature controlled, and the lights are on a set schedule for optimal growth,” said Aluise. Creating fresh vegetables available to folks right here in the lowcountry.

Stefanie says she wanted to plant seeds outside of the classroom. “I saw there were a lot of students that don’t have good quality produce available to them on a regular basis.” Putting the veggies in the mouths of those in need. “Right now, everything that gets harvested out of what we call the community container gets donated back into the community.”

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