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Container FAQ’s

The following are answers to common questions about the SuperGrow Container™, its growing capacity and capabilities. If interested in joining us, be sure to also review our Partner & Licensee FAQs.

There are 3 different SuperGrow Container™ models that make up the Victory Class SuperGrow Container™ offering. They are 20’, 40’, and 53’ in length and are referred to as the V20, V40, and V50.  The V20 has 6 grow modules, the V40 has 12 grow modules and the V53 has 16 grow modules.

A grow module is either a Grow Rack or a Grow Trellis. They consist of lights, soil, and irrigation systems. Grow Racks have 6 shelves on which plants grow. Grow Trellis have 12 pots to accommodate a vine produce such as tomato, cucumber, or pepper plant.

On average the V20 can grow up to 3,500 plants; the V40 up to 7,500 plants and the V53 up to 10,000 plants per month.  The exact number varies based on the size of the plant. For example, Romaine heads require more room than a Basil plant. Therefore, a V40 SuperGrow Container™ can grow 7,776 large Romaine heads per month, and over 11,600 Basil plants.

Generally the V20 can grow 300 lbs per week, the V40 can grow 600 lbs per week, and the V53 can grow 750 lbs per week. (Note: per week, not month) The exact number varies based on the weight of each type of produce and the duration to maturity. Spring mix lettuce is medium weight and grows to maturity in 28 days.  Ridgeline Romaine lettuce is heavier weight and grows to maturity in 56 days. Chives are much lighter and grow to maturity within 21 days.

The Amount of food grown in one SuperGrowContainer is equivalent to between two to four acres of produce. The variation of volume depends on what field farm location to which you are comparing.  A SuperGrow Container™ operates 365 days a year.  A very northern located farm may have only a 90 day grow season where a southern farm may have 150 to 180 day grow season.

Plants generally grow 20% to 40% faster than field grown produce. This varies based on the type of produce. The reason this occurs is that the plant experiences a perfect day every day without any stressors due to excessive heat or cold, drought or flood, or other weather extremes.  In addition, for vegetative produce (non-flowering, leafy green, without fruit) the amount of light per day can be extended which aids in faster growth.

SuperGrow Containers™ generally operate between 70 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. However, different varieties of plants prefer higher and lower temperatures. Care should be taken to grow produce which desire similar temperatures within the same SuperGrow Container™  SuperGrow will provide the ideal settings associated with each produce type.

SuperGrow Containers™ generally operate between 50 and 60 percent relative humidity. However, different varieties of plants prefer higher and lower humidity. For optimal grow environment, a SuperGrow Container™ maintains a low relative humidity.

Yes. The SuperGrow Container™ has operated in the upstate New York along the Canadian border in -20F degrees and in Florida in 106F degrees. The container is designed to operate in Saudi Arabia to Alaska. The temperature is maintained by an ultra-efficient, custom design, HVAC system which uses environmentally friendly coolant and a patented, magnetically-assisted drive motor for low power consumption. Although equipped with a heater, the SuperGrow Container’s™ normal “thermal load” is sufficient to maintain operating temperatures without additional heat in sub-zero outside temperatures.

We have not only operated the SuperGrow Container™ in Florida sun and heat, we have engaged Phd experts in temperature and cooling dynamics to study the SuperGrow Container™.  The results have been that while standing in the Florida sun with no A/C operating, the container maintained a temperature of 85 degrees for 24 hours. The insulation factor is effectively R12. SuperGrow Containers™ use an eco-friendly R134 refrigerant in the HVAC system.

The V20 uses 65Kw/day. The V40 uses 130Kw/day. The V53 uses 150Kw/day.  The average cost of energy in the United States ranges from 5 cents a kilowatt hour to over 29 cents. The V40 can operate for less than $20/day and produces 50% to 200% more produce than its competition.

The SuperGrow Container™ is over 80% efficient in its use of water. This means that the SuperGrow Container™ recaptures the water transpired by the plants through its dehumidification and HVAC systems. That water is then used again in the watering of the plants. Overall, water usage ranges from 5 gallons/day to 15 gallons/day depending on the size of the SuperGrow Container™ and the maturity stage of the plants being grown. Larger and more mature plants use more water per day than seedlings that have just sprouted.

No and yes. The soil does not “wear out”. Rather the nutrients in the soil are used by the plants as they grow. These depleted nutrients are replaced through the on-board composting system into which all the “used” soil and left over plant matter is placed after harvest and the addition of soil adamants at each planting. Soil is lost and needs to be replaced due to spillage by the grow operator. This has been about 2% per month. In addition, if you choose to sell “live culinary plants”, which are plants sold still growing in the soil bulb around the roots, then a higher soil replacement is required. However, “typical” soil replacement is minimal and cost is less than 50 cents per day.

We provide an organic certified soil mixture that includes a blend of composted hen manure, shellfish, perlite and very old dark bark, composted forest humus, sphagnum peat moss, earthworm castings, bat guano, humic acid (derived from Leonardite), sea-going fish emulsion, crab meal, shrimp meal, earthworm castings, sandy loam, granite dust, and Norwegian kelp. We use oyster shell and dolomite lime (for pH adjustment) as needed.

“Consumables” include water, seed, soil, and soil adamant.  Water and soil are answered separately. The seed is actually negligible at less than 20 cents per day due to each planting lasting 21 to 50+ days.  The primary “consumable” is the soil adamant, which is the organic equivalent to “fertilizer”.  Fertilizers are commonly chemically based. Soil Adamants are naturally occurring from the diverse soil Biosystems.  Soil adamants are approximately $4 a day for a V40 SuperGrow Container™. In all, daily consumable costs range from $3/day to $7/day depending on the size on SuperGrow Container™.

Operation of a SuperGrow Container™ includes planting, monitoring, and harvesting produce. It can also include ultra-local delivery. The average grow operator can manage all operations of a 12 grow module, V40 SuperGrow Container™ in 20 hours or less per week. A V20 SuperGrow container is about 10 hours a week. A 53 foot SuperGrow Container™ is about 25 hours per week. Time required varies based on produce grown.  Vine produce that requires tending typically requires slightly more time than simple cut harvest produce which requires more time than produce sold as live culinary plants. Packaging and prep choices vary as well.

Each SuperGrow Container™ can be accessed, if enabled by the owner operator, by the internet for support from SuperGrow. We find support is best done via e-mail and phone with usage of pics or video being sent. We do not require monitoring of the SuperGrow Container™ to be sent to SuperGrow. There are alarms and notices that can be sent to the grow operator if certain thresholds are reached on the temperature, humidity, water, and other systems.

We use exclusively LED lighting. SuperGrow originated using High Pressure Sodium lighting, then advanced to fluorescent lighting, and was one of the first companies to use LED lighting when it became available.  We have since moved to our 3rd generation of LED lights by constantly selecting the best of breed offering from available LED manufacturers for given applications.  Lighting for Grow Trellis grow modules are different than lighting for Grow Rack grow modules. We can provide custom or user-selected LED lighting for advanced customers who are able to provide and understand the ramifications of light adjustment on a variety of significant grow parameters.  This is much like how one installs software on a computer where the standard settings meet the needs of 98% of the users. Advanced setting are available at your own risk after thorough review.

The short answers are “anything” and “the American Salad bar”. We have grown over 40 types of produce and are adding more every day. The best and most practical produce to grow in the SuperGrow Container™ has a short grow cycle, is a relatively short plant (12” or less), and is typically subject to spoil quickly. These characteristics lend themselves to leafy green produce, such as lettuces, herbs, micro greens, and some fruiting produce, such as tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers. See What Can Grow.

Generally any plant, if given enough soil, water, nutrients, and light will grow. However, there are practical limitations. Very tall produce, such as grains, are best grown in fields. Very large produce, which take up a large square footage area, such as melons and cauliflower are best grown in fields. Other smaller root vegetables, such as carrots, onions, and potatoes have all been grown in the SuperGrow Container™. However, the time required and the long, stable shelf life of these root vegetables make growing them less optimal in a competitive market.

Yes. The SuperGrow Container™ is specifically designed to grow produce that can be certified as organic. These specific designs include a soil based grow method and grow apparatus, as well as, an on board composter. Methods include the use of only organic soil adamants.

The SuperGrow Container™, with its soil based “terraponics” methods, can be certified as organic by ANY Accredited Certification Agency. The National Organics Standard Board, again in 2016, refused to acknowledge hydroponic, aquaponics, or aeroponic produce as being able to be certified as organic. See “Is Hydroponic Organic?” on our Resources page.

There are three primary reasons. (1) Hydroponic methods rely on the water to deliver non-organic, primary grow nutrients of Nitrogen (N), Phosphorus (P), and Potassium (K). This results in produce growth but does not provide the minerals nor the nearly dozen micro-nutrients found only in a soil based biosystem that provide the nutrition and taste present in organic field grown produce. (2) Hydroponic irrigation of plants consists of either an “ebb and flow” method of flooding the root area, letting the water be absorbed by the plants before flooding again, or “drip” system, which provides water on a continual basis. Interrupting either method for a small amount of time can be catastrophic to the produce. In addition to the system backups, the SuperGrow Container™ soil based solution provides a natural buffer to any disruption that could occur allowing the plants to tolerate and grow in up to 3 days of disrupted water availability due to power loss or other factors. (3) Only the SuperGrow Container™ with its soil based grow methods and apparatus (referred to as “Terraponics”) can guarantee organic certification of the produce. This results in healthier produce and at least a 30% higher market value when sold, which is more profits for the SuperGrow Container™ operator. The National Organics Standard Board, again in 2016, refused to acknowledge hydroponic, aquaponics, or aeroponic produce as being able to be certified as organic.

Yes, in several ways. The produce chosen is part of the customization. The number of shelves on a grow rack can be decreased (not typically increased) to allow for slightly taller produce (some short bush type produce, for example). In addition, the composter and grow operator space can be removed or not included if both are available in other ways nearby the SuperGrow Container™.

Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. A SuperGrow Container™ can be located anywhere that it can receive standard house current power (30 amps, 110v) and water (garden hose volume).  Although the SuperGrow Container™ is made to be located anywhere, the target location is close to the retail outlets or consumer, which is primarily an urban or suburban location. The high density of produce and vertical grow apparatus means that significant amount of produce can be grown in a very small footprint, approximately 2 parking spaces end-to-end. This allows the SuperGrow Container™ to be located in a parking lot, behind a building, or streetside where the 20, 40, or 53’ side can act also as a large billboard informing passersby of the amazing produce being grown locally and organically year round.

The SuperGrow Container™ has a built in, hydraulic leveling system that can accommodate changes in the grade up to 2 feet over the length and width of the SuperGrow Container™.    Additional blocking can be used if the grade is more steep than that.

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