Brunel student unveils soil-free window box design

A student has invented a trippy hydroponic windowbox based on a fluorescent crystal soil and water-based fog liquid.

Tom Kelham unveiled HydroGro at Brunel University's final-year student design show this week. "It allows people to grow fruit and veg on their window sills without the need for soil," said the 23-year-old industrial design student.

"I came up with the idea when I was living in the university halls of residence and noticed the window sill picked up the most sunlight in any room. To avoid dirt, I used colourful crystal soil, a water-retaining gel, which when combined with fog liquid creates an amazing visual effect streaked with roots."

Kelham reckoned this was the first time hydroponics had been combined with fogging, known as "foggerponics". The fog liquid cost £15 and the crystals £2.50.

"The usual hydroponics systems are large and noisy," said Kelham. His tomatoes have grown but failed to crop to date because "I need more time to run tests".

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