Mix indoor farming technology with Italian style and you get an agricultural system which is good for the environment and rather nice to look at.

The Living Farming Tree (LFT), from Milan-based startup Hexagro Urban Farming, is an automated and scalable solution that can operate in small spaces without the need for fertile soil. Built from recyclable materials, the LFT uses aeroponics – developed by NASA in the 80s to grow food in space.

“Aeroponics means no soil and no liquid water (in contrast to most common hydroponic systems). Plants are grown on an inert substrate – we commonly use cotton – and the roots are freely let to develop beneath. Our watering system is a specific mist of water and nutrients. This technique leaves the roots well aerated in order to absorb more oxygen, more nutrients and therefore grow faster, tastier and more nutritious,” the Italian firm states on its website.

The Hexagro team says it is “confident the product will represent the most advanced and easy-to-use indoor farming system for households, restaurants and office spaces”.

And this week the company launched its first crowdfunding campaign on the EU-backed Katana platform.

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