Do-it-yourself projects, such as gardening or building a deck, can provide a sense of accomplishment if you see them through to the end, but a lot of people (myself included, admittedly), just do not have the time, patience, or determination to even begin, let alone finish, that sort of undertaking. Estonian home-gardening startup Click and Grow has developed a relatively-cheap setup that allows people to grow food within the confines of their own home.
At the moment, Click and Grow offers an $80 electrically-powered garden bed, which requires nothing but a bit of water, time, and heat from the LED lighting to produce a variety of plants. They also sell the plants, ranging from tomatoes to chili peppers to flowers, for prices ranging from $20 to $130. But, having shipped hundreds of thousands of garden beds, they bigger ambitions and are currently developing a “kitchen rack” of sorts, which will be able to produce a much larger amount of food. The main differences between the new system, which is due to go on sale in 2016 for $299 and for which they have already collected more than 2,000 preorders, are in size and efficiency. The current garden bed hold spots for 3 plants, which can probably satisfy a person, but Click and Grow says that the new system can grow plants 30% faster and with 95% less water, while potentially providing enough food to feed a family.
One of the unique aspects of this startup is that, despite having been founded in 2009 (and beginning to ship products in 2011), they took an unusual step by an established company in entering an acceleration program by joining the latest class at Y Combinator. They already have a nice bit of funding, claiming $2.2 million in total funding from an undisclosed (other than Y Combinator) group of investors, but a representative from the startup says that they decided to enter this acceleration program, ahead of the planned release of their newest product next year, in a quest for mentorship and guidance that could help them in the launch.