Planting Terrace

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Planting Terraces

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Great Northern Berries Plant Terraces

What are “Plant Terraces”?
In 2011, some of the Wayside Farmers toured some hydroponic strawberry producing farms, and decided to experiment with developing our own prototype design, with the goal of building this concept into our berry farm. What resulted, are some versions of our design that we have built to produce our strawberries, as well as offering for sale this year. Plant Terraces are designed to accomplish the following objectives:

  1. Allow high-density plant production of a high value crop.
  2. Allow ease of watering and plant management, with no kneeling or weeding.
  3. Conserving water and fertilizers and space can be accomplished through a design that stacks pots 5 layers high while allows watering to be applied only to the top pots, with passing through each pot and out the bottom to the pot below.
  4. With the addition of drip emitters, an irrigation timer, and a water source, the Plant Terraces may be automated to allow almost worry-free growing.


Why is Great Northern Berries offering Plant Terraces for sale:

In 2012, quite a few visitors to our prototype ‘strawberry plantation’ remarked on how interesting our growing system looked, how neat and clean plants can be maintained, what a great idea to not have to kneel in the soil (or mud) to get to harvest plants, and how simple the whole system appeared. Some asked: “Are we planning to offer for this system in the future?” So, we have gone ahead, and put the system into production.

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What can be grown in Plant Terraces?
At Great Northern Berries, we use these plant towers for strawberry production, but many other uses can be made of them. Imagine 15 pots (see the Triad Terrace system below) growing a myriad of flowering annuals, herbs, fruits and vegetables all in the space of a kitchen table. Plants are easy to water and maintain. The towers rotate, allowing easy access for plant care or harvesting and allow the pots to be turned towards the sunlight from time to time.
Some folks use this type of system to grow a continuous food supply of lettuce, basil and other herbs. These pots will work well for growing the popular ‘micro-greens’ due to the large surface area on each layer. Unlike some other tower systems, Plant Terraces have a continuous circular soil surface around the pots and a large soil volume. Tomatoes will work, if not overplanted, using compact or trailing varieties, although ‘standard’ garden varieties will be too vigorous and unruly. Planting the Terraces with flowering annuals will give an impressive and easy to maintain display. Hand watering with a hose or watering can is easy and can be done once every day or two. This method may be beneficial when growing a diversity of plants on one system when plant needs vary greatly. For high-intensity growing of similar crops, and to provide automatic watering while you are away, a supplemental drip irrigation system may be worth considering. Drip systems will provide water to drip from above and which will then percolate down through the other 4 levels to water each one in turn. This system, soon to be offered as a package, has worked very well for us. Watch for “Terrace options” below and on the order form when they become available.

At Great Northern Berries, we are growing roughly 5000 everbearing strawberries on 250 Terrace towers in an area of about 40x100 feet. This is the equivalent of almost an acres worth of gardening in 1/10 the space. In addition, there is no kneeling, no weeds or mud, and no backbreaking work at ground level. It is possible to automate the watering, so minimum care and maintenance is required.

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(The Basic Terrace shown with ‘The Simplest base support’)

The Basic Terrace: is an easy and economical way to grow many plants in a small area. 5 ‘pots’ will grow 3-5 nice-sized plants each, depending on their size and vigor, within an area of about 2 square feet. We suggest positioning Terrace towers at least 3 feet from other towers or shading structures when possible to allow adequate light and air. Singles will require additional support. One idea to consider might be to secure a horizontal cross-bar to 2 trees or posts, or a bracket to a building wall and tie in the top of the tower to this bar or bracket. Watering of the plants can be accomplished via watering can, hose or supplemental trickle-irrigation system. While there are several alternative tower systems available in the US, ours is constructed of long-lasting and durable heavy-duty polystyrene pots with PVC and steel supporting parts. No flimsy styrofoam, and our pricing is very competitive.

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The Triad Terrace: is a self-supporting unit ready to assemble and plant with or without an optional 4 ft.x4 ft. x ½” plywood base and without supplemental support. Each Triad has three of the same freely rotating 5 level pot system along with base pedestals and connecting fittings and bars at the top. Towers are 36” on center allowing for adequate light and air to get to all levels.

How are the Great Northern Berry Growing Terraces priced?

The Basic Terrace
(requires some form of additional support method) $79.99
1: 70” x ¾” emt metal tube. (central support pipe)
5: 12” diameter terrace baskets
6: 2” pvc pipe pot supports (various lengths)
1: 1 ½” pvc base pot rotating guide
4: 1 ¼” pvc pot rotating guides (various lengths)
2: pvc end caps

Multiple Singe Terrace Units 10+ @ $74.99
Same unit as our Single Towers, but available at quantity pricing.

Support options:
In addition to a basic Terrace, one of the following may be helpful.
The Simplist: (an iron rod driven into the ground to support a singe Terrace) $12
1: ½” x 60” re-bar rod
1: pvc end cap to act as a support
2: ¾” washers (to act as support bearings and allowing rotation)

Steel Base Unit:
(a pedestal which will securely support the bottom on wood or cement) $7
1: ¾” x 3” galvanized steel pedestal base The Basic Terrace
(requires some form of additional support method) $79.99

1: 70” x ¾” emt metal tube. (central support pipe)
5: 12” diameter terrace baskets
6: 2” pvc pipe pot supports (various lengths)
1: 1 ½” pvc base pot rotating guide
4: 1 ¼” pvc pot rotating guides (various lengths)
2: pvc end caps

Multiple Singe Terrace Units 10+ @ $74.99
Same unit as our Single Towers, but available at quantity pricing.
Support options: In addition to a basic Terrace, one of the following may be helpful.

The Simplist:
(an iron rod driven into the ground to support a singe Terrace) $12
1: ½” x 60” re-bar rod
1: pvc end cap to act as a support
2: ¾” washers (to act as support bearings and allowing rotation)

Steel Base Unit:
(a pedestal which will securely support the bottom on wood or cement) $7
1: ¾” x 3” galvanized steel pedestal base

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The Triad: 3 Terraces:     $289.99
(A crisp, clean, free-standing self-supporting Triple Terrace. See photo above.)
3: complete Basic Terraces
3: ¾” pedestal base supports
6: ¾” washers to act as pivot bearings
3: ¾” steel tees
3: ¾” curved pipes to connect tops

© Wayside Farm & Great Northern Berries 506 Whiteface Road, North Sandwich, NH 03259
wayside11@gmail.com

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