I hate swimming, especially in pools. I just don’t get what’s so fun about paddling around in a chemical bath while bugs and boogers bob past your half-submerged face. But I do, however, like food.
Luckily there is Garden Pool, a non-profit in the United States based out of Phoenix that can help you turn that concrete swimming pit into a working farm.
What was once a yawning cement hole was transformed into an incredibly prolific closed-loop ecosystem, growing everything from broccoli and sweet potatoes to sorghum and wheat, with chickens, tilapia, algae, and duckweed all interacting symbiotically to provide enough food to feed a family of five.
I love seeing ideas like this because they are simple, workable solutions to creating more spaces for local food and urban farming—or rather, in the case of Garden Pools, more likely suburban farming. I’ve grown pretty tired of seeing fancy renderings of vertical farms and skyscraper orchards and all these other high-tech, high-cost ways of urban agriculture.
The simplest, most practical solutions aren’t those that require tons of new infrastructure to be built, but those that repurpose old infrastructure in creative ways.
image from Garden Pool