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Manhattan Scientists Try Aerial Agriculture

Scientists from Columbia University are experimenting with more practical ways to make Manhattan roofs green. Really green. As in covered in vegetation!

Metropolitan Museum of Modern Art roof garden

Photo: wallyg (via flickr)

Roof gardens are finally getting the attention they deserve with funding from the federal government.

Scientists from Columbia University are receiving federal funding from the National Science Foundation to experiment with ways to make towering rooftops green.

Really green. As in covered in vegetation!

The project’s team members aren’t talking about growing fruits and vegetables just yet, but they already have high-rise honeybees working away above the city that never sleeps.

Part of the project is to test how well the vegetation grows using a substrate of composted food waste from Columbia University’s cafeterias.

Watch the video: Green Roofs: Ingenuity sprouting from the rooftops (NSF)

Megan Meyer

Megan Meyer was in the company of foodies for most of her formative years. She spent all of her teens working at her town's natural food co-op in South Dakota, and later when she moved to Minneapolis, worked as a produce maven for the nation's longest running collectively-managed food co-op. In 2006, she had the distinct pleasure (and pain) of participating the vendanges, or grape harvest, in the Beaujolais terroire of France, where she developed her compulsion to snip off grape clusters wherever they may hang. In the spring of 2008, Megan interned on NPR's Science Desk in Washington, D.C., where she aided in the coverage of science, health and food policy stories. She joined Indiana Public Media in June, 2009.

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