US (SC): Vertical farm Ghost Grow 843 stacks up fresh produce

Garret Fleming has grown his business from the ground up — quite literally.

While Charleston is used to the abundance of produce that comes from the state's rural cities, his 'farm' is in West Ashley, and his crops grow up, not out. As the owner of Ghost Grow 843, he has turned his West Ashley backyard into a tower garden of greens that grace the plates of some of the city's finest restaurants.

The backyard farm has 30 towers with a capacity for 1,320 plants, which are fed by a small aquatic pump that pushes water to the top of the tower and uses gravity to rain down the nutrient water onto the plant roots. There are additional towers in his garage.

Fleming began the company after a stint in house and yard maintenance and then two years at the Bank of South Carolina in Charleston.

"I learned that wasn't what I wanted to do with my life," he said. "My wife and I took a risk and went out to California, where I could learn about hydroponics on a big scale. I worked for LA Urban Farms, and we'd have residential clients, schools, restaurants, and movie studios. 


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