718: Angelo Kelvakis on Indoor Garden Systems.
Picking the best indoor garden for your needs.
In This Podcast:
Angelo Kelvakis demystifies the hydroponic garden. The right garden can be a great investment in your health and wellbeing. Angelo helps take the guesswork out of choosing the garden that best fits your lifestyle. He’ll teach you how to ask the right questions, identify the most important components, and research a system before you make a purchase, so you will continue to enjoy your garden and reap many benefits from it for years to come.
Angelo Kelvakis is a graduate of Loyola University Chicago where he studied environmental science and published research on nutrient uptake for plants. During this time, he also managed the Eco-Dome lab where he ran the aquaponics system which supplied fresh produce and fish to the Loyola Farmers Market. After graduating, he worked for several indoor farm companies helping them get start up, and finally was an early employee of Rise Gardens where he works today. At Rise, Angelo is both the Director of Research and Development, and a Horticulturalist where he is in charge of the Rise Lab focusing on nutrient design, plant growth research, and algorithm development.
Listen in and learn about:
- Stumbling into the urban agriculture program at Loyola University as a way to acquire a new personality
- Exposure to the world of food with an environmental & sustainability lens
- Aquaponics – growing plants and fish together
- Urban Farm U has an aquaponics course. Go to Urbanfarm.org/courses
- An Aha! moment – There is a lot more sustainability from agriculture on a smaller scale.
- Rise Gardens – created to be an attractive hydroponic garden
- Questions to ask if you are new to hydroponics:
– What is the size of the unit? Will it fit your space?
– What plants do you want to grow?
– How much do you want to grow?
- Rise Gardens are designed to look more like furniture.
- The Personal Garden is a tabletop version
- Family Garden is a modular bookshelf unit that grows 12 to 36 plants – start with one layer and add one or two more
- Lights are the most important component of an indoor garden.
- Nutrients should be ph balanced to about 5.8 to make them available to your plants.
- The structure of the unit is important because you have to live with it.
- Maintenance should fit your lifestyle.
- You’ll spend approximately 30 min to an hour every 6 months or so cleaning your Rise Garden system.
- Research the cleaning process before purchasing any system.
- Growing food is starting to make financial sense for more people.
As well as:
His failure – Bringing plants in from Home Depot and infesting the whole lab with aphids
His success – A third grader he taught to grow basil who became so excited that she kept interrupting a zoom meeting
His drive – thinking about food waste
His advice – Being self sufficient should always lead back to community
Angelo’s Book recommendation:
How to reach Angelo:
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