Nemo's Garden

photo courtesy of Nemo's Garden

Octopus’s Garden, Well, Maybe Nemo’s Garden
| published July 26, 2015 |

By Lisa K. Whitten Thursday Review contributor

As a late bloomer scuba diver I have seen amazing things while diving and have a lot of fun meeting people with similar interests. As if those were not good enough reasons to dive, I also find that it is a great stress reliever. Sure, it is a lot of hard work, but diving in the ocean in the 60-to-80 foot depth range (my limit) gives you the opportunity to see some pretty awesome stuff—beautiful fish, sharks, stingrays, and octopi, to name but just a few. If you are fortunate to come across some giant goliath grouper you can hear them thunder. Though dives often offer lots of fish to see, other dives are more serene with fewer fish around. Sounds boring? Actually, the landscape, or seascape as it were, is wonderful for sightseeing. Plants, coral and sea urchins make for an interesting landscape worthy of a photograph or two. How could it possibly be better than this?

diver tending underwater garden for Nemo's GardenFor centuries mankind has attempted to reclaim deserts and other harsh landscapes for the purpose of cultivating the land and growing food, with mixed results. But how often do we look under the sea to plant gardens and crops? Nemo’s Garden has looked to the sea in Italy and is growing quite a few things under the surface of the ocean. Three years ago, Sergio Gamberini, developed an underwater greenhouse, resembling a balloon. About 20 feet underwater he and his team, Ocean Reef Group, fill them with air, anchor them down and are growing plants in pots. Some of the plants they have grown are basil, beans, strawberries and more.

Luca Gamberini stated in an interview with Fox News Tech Take correspondent Adam Housley that two of the biggest advantages of growing under the sea are the relatively constant temperatures, and the lack of parasites and destructive insects. The Gamberinis have also developed a natural way to introduce constant, even watering for the plants. The salt water on the exterior of the greenhouse evaporates, condensing on the interior surface and then “raining” on the plants. The atmospheric pressure is salient which helps the plants grow faster.

For me, diving just got better with the additional possibilities which come with gardening under the sea. Nemo’s Garden is still experimenting and you can watch live streaming video, or view the photos and video gallery on their website: Nemo’s Garden.

Related Thursday Review articles:

Underwater Photography, U.S. Navy; Thursday Review; October 30, 2014.

Wreck Diving Navy Style; Thursday Review; September 6, 2014.