Turn those collection of wine bottles into a self-watering hydroponic urban garden with Urban Leaf.

Gardening to most people can be very intimidating. However, Urban Leaf’s ultimate goal is to help build a future where food is fresh and locally grown. They also hope to help people make smarter food choices. The system is easy to use and green thumbs aren’t a prerequisite for anyone to grow fresh food at home.

The small cylindrical seed pod fits inside the neck of a bottle – which creates an optimal environment for seed germination. The device uses proprietary hydroponic techniques which is patent pending to create an optimal growing environment.

How does Urban Leaf work?

Set up is simple. Just fill a bottle with water, insert the garden and you’re ready to grow. The the kit comes with a quick start guide, stickers for the bottles and non-GMO seeds.

Urban Leaf’s device is made from a biodegradable cornstarch-based plastic that encloses a nutrient-enriched smart soil with herb seeds. The smart soil uses a capillary action to lift water up to the seeds. The seedling sprouts grow their roots into the solution in the bottle, this allows the plant to water itself in the process.

The company is kicking off the project with common herb varieties such as basil and mint, but are experimenting with vegetables and edible flowers to expand their future offerings. According to Urban Leaf, the seeds will germinate in as few as 3 days and can grow to harvestable size in just a few weeks.

The only Urban Leaf care necessary is access to adequate light and to keep the bottle topped off with water up to once a week. The company says its plants will tend to outgrow the original bottle after three to five months, some of the beta tester units have been growing for well over 6 months with no issues.

Get your own Urban Leaf kit

Crowdfunding for this product is available on Kickstarter with pledges starting at about R193.27.