This Modular, Modern Indoor Forest Is a Grower and Shower


Generally speaking, planters designed for vertical farming using no-soil hydroponic solutions abide by function dictating form. Beyond tabletop small growing systems or passive hydroponic action planters, growing plants for consumption seems a goal best prescribed for outdoors. But with the explosion of interest in both houseplants and gardening, it’s a bit of a mystery there aren’t more thoughtfully designed solutions like the Mother’s Forest modular green wall system – the first grow system that we want rather than singularly need.

House plants shown growing in Forest module with person's hand reach toward cactus.

What is immediately striking is the Forest system’s attention to the aesthetic. While other pod-based growing systems look the part of a plant growing system, albeit with increasingly more pleasing tabletop appliance-like designs being made available, the Forest is reminiscent of the once popular mid-century style tension floor-to-ceiling pole lighting. It looks like something intended to live within a residential space with or without plants.

Mother Forest co-founders, Ann-Sofie Vandamme and Dries Bovijn

Mother Forest co-founders, Ann-Sofie Vandamme and Dries Bovijn

Detail of small herbs growing in Forest module.

Nobody wants to live in an excessively bright-white illuminated interior; the Forest LEDs deliver light rated for a warmly natural white 3700K temperature.

The system uses tiered and adjustable 5W full-spectrum grow lights seated at the bottom of each planter base (the most top plant can be assigned a light-only panel for this purpose). The system is designed to help seeds grow to sizes for harvesting directly or intended to transplant to larger planters for further growth – a sort of vertical photosynthetic and hydroponic nursery.

Forest shown in corner of a living space with house plants growing in each of its five modules.

Forest’s furniture-forward design makes placement less of a concern, and the inclusion of LED lighting opens up possibilities in areas where plants could not normally grow.

Close-up of house plant growing in Forest planter.

While edible herbs and produce are prime reasons for growing indoors, the system can do equally well to host houseplants.

With maternal care and foresight, the Forest is constructed with recycled and anodized aluminum rather than plastic, with the entire system forgoing the use of glues or paint for a more pleasant finish and lasting durability. The company notes LED componentry can and does fail (the LED modules are covered by a 4-year warranty), but the modular design should make repair/replacement easy.

The system starts at around $291, with additional nodes and lighting modules available to expand the Forest’s growth capacity.

Gregory Han is Tech Editor of Design Milk. A Los Angeles native with a profound love and curiosity for design, hiking, tide pools, and road trips, a selection of his adventures and musings can be found at gregoryhan.com.



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