Find answers to some of our most frequent questions.
Vertical farming brings food production to our cities. Instead of planting crops in open fields, vertical agriculture defines a new frontier of food production by stacking growing areas in buildings within city limits. This increases crop yields per square foot and avoids unnecessary transportation. Agricultural land for the supply of our ever-growing global population by means of conventional agriculture is becoming shrinking as more people now live in cities than in rural areas. Vertical farming provides a more sustainable supply of food, exactly where it is needed - with less water and no pesticide use.
Aeroponics, a form of hydroponics is a form of plant growing without soil, but are sprayed with a nutrient solution - just like in the GroPod! The plants are supported on the seed pods meticulously designed by Heliponix. Hydroponics has many advantages such as the availability of minerals and water and in the case of aeroponics, superior supply of oxygen to the plant roots, which is crucial for healthy plant growth.
Our two founders Scott and Ivan previously designed hydroponic growth chambers on a NASA funded research study at Purdue University to develop life support systems for future space colonies. They then started their own company to democratize agriculture through decentralized farming appliances that could allow to farm through their literal, revolutionary design and advanced IoT (Internet of Things) software to eliminate the labor and knowledge required to farm at home.
The GroPod constantly monitors environmental conditions and automatically adjusts temperature, lighting and irrigation to the needs of the plants, depending on species and stage of growth.
Via the app, which runs on all Android and iOS devices or can be accessed via the browser on a PC or laptop, the GroPod can be controlled. It is the control panel for the GroPod and allows you to track plant and GroPod status from anywhere at any time.
Not at all, the GroPod does it all for you. If there is something to do, such as adding nutrients or water, the app will remind you via text notification.
The GroPod provides an incredibly diverse and fresh plant-based diet, but the under the counter model can not cover your daily calorie needs.
It all depends on what you compare it with, which varieties you prefer, where you go shopping and the season of the year. Plants like romaine lettuce tend to be cheaper in the grocery store - but only with the GroPod you can be sure that they are not treated with pesticides or the like. Other varieties from our growing seed pod offering list are hardly available in many regions and therefore more expensive in shops, if available at all. In addition, plants from the GroPod are fresher, more flavorful, and have higher levels of healthy secondary metabolites (vitamins, minerals, antioxidants) than already harvested plants, as the majority of nutrients are lost within the first 24 hours after harvest.
Currently, the GroPod can be easily purchased here online via the GroPod.io website.
Together with the GroPod, you get 20 seed pods and 1 month of nutrient packets to grow your own greens instantly. There is also a helpful user manual to start growing as soon as the package is opened!
The GroPod is manufactured by a state of the art appliance manufacturer in the United States.
Questions about the GroPod™
The Heliponix™ GroPod™ is a smart appliance that grows fresh Pure Produce™ in the comfort of your home without the use of any pesticides or preservatives.
The GroPod uses aeroponics to grow plants using only water and nutrients. NO SOIL, NO BUGS, NO PESTICIDES, NO PRESERVATIVES! Nutrient water is sprayed on the inside of the growing tower to feed the plant roots. High tech LED lights are used to grow the plants with very little energy. The different plant species have certain parameters stored in our cloud software that provide optimal growth. This is how the GroPod knows when, how much to irrigate, what lighting conditions the plants need and when, which temperature should prevail.
No - there is a water bin in the lower drawer of the GroPod that will give you “add one gallon of water” notifications when in stand alone mode. However, it can be plumbed into a ¼” water line (same as most American refrigerators) to automate this process.
The proprietary LED arrays were designed specifically for the GroPod. They contain several different LED colors that the exact wavelengths from the solar spectrum that are necessary for healthy plant growth with the least amount of energy.
The GroPod™ allows you to grow any plant like a true professional, implementing a different growing plan for each plant. There’s no need for any prior knowledge or experience, the GroPod will do all the work for you.
The Heliponix™ GroPod™ can grow up to 60 plants at once. The GroPod is a closed system that cares for the growth of salads, herbs and microgreens. Ideal lighting, optimal temperature and automatic irrigation, grows plants 2-3 times faster than conventional farming methods while having more nutrients and more flavorful taste.
Our proprietary, rotary aeroponic design allows plants to overlap each other while still getting access to light. Rotating plants across a light source allows both sides of the leaves to get the light they need while still reaching the intracanopy. Plants also naturally adapt to their environment and will create dense versions of themselves once they detect obstacles, “the walls”.
After you choose a subscription plan and plant the seedPods, Heliponix™ will take control of the GroPod and only notify you occasionally via our mobile app to add water and nutrients.
The GroPod™ requires 8 gallons of water per month to grow plants. Users will need to add about 2 gallons of water once per week.
The water inlet strainer will need to be cleaned approximately once per month
The GroRings™ and water reservoir are easily removable and are dishwasher safe.
You will be required to add a pre-measured fertilizer packet to each gallon of water you add to the reservoir.
The Heliponix™ GroPod™’s average power consumption is 65kWhr or less than $8/month for the average consumer. Our patented, rotary aeroponic™ design has the highest yields of produce relative to kWh of energy consumed.
The GroPod™ connects to the internet using ethernet or wifi. Once the GroPod™ connects to your account, it will determine the best growing environment for the variety of plants growing in your system. The GroPod™ uses sensors to monitor and control the growing environment inside. Notifications will be sent to inform the grower of important GroPod™ status.
Open the GroPod’s door, and gently twist the seed pod in both directions until it becomes loose, and slides out of the planting port with all roots. Be sure to tuck any other roots that may have been out from other plants back into the empty port. Dispose of the entire plant grown in the seed pod after the plant has been harvested. We don’t recommend cutting the leaves from the plant as you may kill the plants.
The GroPod has a water bin that holds about 2 gallons of water. After filling the water bin, the GroPod can go about 1-2 weeks without the addition of water or nutrients. We have an additional package available to allow the GroPod to be plumbed in so that you never have to add water again.
About 150 pounds.
The GroPod can be operated anywhere indoors at 60 to 90 ° F, where there is an internet connection and a power outlet.
With the standard dimensions of 24 x 24 x 34.5 in, the GroPod can be integrated into the kitchen in many different ways, and, of course, also be operated free-standing.
Yes, that's not a problem as the GroPod will be without interaction for a week before a nutrient packet needs to be added. In case of longer absence (> approx. 3 weeks) it is recommended to switch off the GroPod.
Yes, up to 120F.
No. The GroPod serves as hydroponics, meaning that no soil is needed.
Questions about the Seed Pods™
SeedPods contain dry seeds in a small cup used for growing. The SeedPods are shipped to you monthly in a subscription package and are pre-programed to control your GroPod.
Currently we offer 24 varieties. These are divided into microgreens, baby salads and herbs. Here you can find all greens. However, we also provide a blank seed pod that can be planted with a seed of your choice that we may not yet offer. The general rule of thumb is that plants with woody stems such as trees or bushes cannot be grown in a GroPod.
We are constantly researching new varieties that grow reliably and quickly in the GroPod. Several hundred species of plants have already been tested in our laboratory. We are constantly planning to offer new varieties and expand our portfolio of seed pods. We also want to offer more vegetables and fruits as soon as possible.
They grow much faster, because the GroPod is not limited to growing seasons, and does not require field labor. Additionally, we provide higher concentrations of healthy ingredients through robust light, temperature and watering settings - this is impossible to achieve outdoors.
The sooner a crop is eaten after harvest, the more flavorful it is. Factors such as light, water characteristics, climate, and the composition of the nutrient solution for the plants amount to different taste profiles. We have optimized these parameters to maximize taste and nutritional content.
Germination, growth, harvest.
It depends on the variety, between 21 to 30 days. You can follow the growth at any time through the mobile application.
Depending on the variety, between 1 and 6 days. The germination phase will be displayed in the mobile application.
It depends on what you plant. Most leafy green plants weigh about 130 - 150 grams after a month of growth. There is a maximum configuration of sixty planting ports in the under the counter GroPod. Assuming 130 grams per seed pod, a user could expect to see about 200 lbs of leafy green vegetables harvested annually from their GroPod if they regularly harvest, and replace their seed pods.
Seed pod pricing is dependant on subscription quantity tiered pricing, but can cost between $2.60 - $1.70 including the total, flat subscription cost of packaging, software transaction, shipping, and nutrient packets.
The growing media is rockwool, a popular soilless growing medium for gardening and hydroponics because it holds water well and allows air to circulate the root zone for exceptional plant growth. Its strength makes it suitable for root support. Rockwool is an inorganic insulator made from stones or rocks by blowing a jet of steam through molten rock (such as siliceous rock or limestone) or slag. More advanced production methods involve spinning molten rock in high-speed spinning heads.
We have established an exclusive relationship with an American seed supply company to secure top tier seeds that non-genetically modified and NOT treated with pesticides or insecticides.
All living things require certain minerals such as iron, magnesium and calcium. The nutrient powder contains the essential macro and micro nutrients needed to facilitate healthy plant growth.
No living thing can grow with water alone, nutrients are required to form plant biomass.
We recommend that the users harvest the plants when they ready to eat them to maximize taste, and nutritional content. However, they can be stored in cups of water to ensure to keep the roots wet for extended periods of time.
The SeedPod subscription plan includes the variety of plants you choose, a monthly supply of nutrients and free access to our mobile application. Subscription plans can be customized to what you want to grow. Pricing is based on number of SeedPods per month and the plant types included.
At Heliponix, we believe everyone should have access to fresh produce anywhere in the world, at any time of the year. Our products are engineered to optimize plant growth, minimize energy consumption, reduce water usage, and enhance taste. Join our food revolution by becoming your own sustainable farmer and taking control of your food.
Heliponix produces the GroPod appliance for growing food indoors, and provides open-sourced outdoor modular farm technology as well. Learn more about our technology at heliponix.com