Wouldn’t it be a dream to live in a beautiful city with organic gardens on the roofs of all buildings? Well, that has already started to happen in the Principality of Monaco!
In 2016, Switzerland’s Jessica Sbaraglia founded the start-up Terre de Monaco and started the urban organic agriculture project in the region. As Monaco has only 2 km², there is not much space available for gardens, right? However, Jessica saw the potential of all those terraces and balconies.
Apparently it was not only Jessica who saw this, since the company obtained financing for the project through a crowdfunding platform. The € 25,000 target was reached in just two months.
The first organic garden developed by the company was in the gardens of the Albert II Foundation, in a space of just 30 m². It wasn’t long before the Monte-Carlo Bay and Monte-Carlo Beach hotels also became partners. With that, the company started supplying ingredients to Elsa, the main restaurant at the Monte-Carlo Beach hotel and the first 100% organic to earn a Michelin star.
Currently, there are more than 1,400 m² of organic gardens in the principality. The project is not just for restaurants and commercial buildings; individuals who want to transform a small balcony or even the terrace of the residential condominium can hire a company that charges a fixed annual fee to maintain the vegetable garden.
In addition to spontaneous demand, the company’s expansion plans are in full swing and the idea is to transform any space available in Monaco into an organic garden.
In a private building, the company can either pay a rent to use the space or reverse the payment on organic products produced there. The rest of the harvest is also used and sold by the Terre de Monaco brand.
Here in Brazil, there are already some very cool initiatives like the organic garden on the terrace of Shopping Eldorado, in São Paulo, with more than 5,000 m² that uses organic waste generated in the food court as fertilizer. Incredible, right?
How about taking this idea to your condo? The decision needs to be made in assembly and, if they choose to make the vegetable garden on the terrace, it is necessary to carry out a study with a qualified professional (agricultural technician and architect) so as not to compromise the building’s structure with too much weight, very deep plant roots or lack of waterproofing of the slab.
Another simpler idea is to use pots and planters in the garden. This avoids additional infrastructure costs and is already a great starting point 😉