I feel far behind in my updating-- if I've learned one thing about myself this year, it's that I am not great at blogging! (Perhaps I am just far too busy getting things accomplished... yeah, let's go with that! :) )
Todd and I built a window farm-- you can watch a video of it in action by following the link above. This was part one of probably 3; we will at least put one more in that window (possibly two). We have two tomato plants, three different types of lettuces, and parsley planted in it. I am actually really impressed with how well it's all doing; we have already harvested the lettuce (before this video was made) and need to espalier the tomato plants before they get too tall and heavy. For that job, we plan to use old curtain rods.
We built the whole thing with 4" pvc that we already had; we made cuts about 1/2 way through the pvc and then used a heat gun to make pockets for the plants. We used hydroton (we already had some) but lava rocks or any other porous rocks would work as well. There is an air pump that helps to aerate the water, and along with the fountain pump, brings the solution splashing over the whole contraption and feeds the plants. We are using an organic hydroponics solution (that we already had-- we planned for this project and a couple more a couple years ago). We change out the solution once per week, and the whole thing is working quite nicely.
The idea is that we could have fresh lettuces, tomatoes, perhaps some peppers, and other veg available through the winter and certainly through the challenge; we are considering the possiblity of hanging a couple of grow lights inside the window frame through January and February to help with the low light-- the window it's in is a south facing window, so that helps too. :)