6 Genoa - ITALY

Researchers are growing basil under the sea Agronomy.

Agronomy - From 10 to 16 July

Divers exploring the waters of Liguria in Italy this summer may have a surprise in store. Eight meters down and a hundred meters from the shore, they could just happen upon three plastic bells fixed to the sea floor. Inside are compost bins containing basil plants! Sergio Gamberini, the CEO of a company specializing in underwater communication equipment, came up with the idea of using the advantages presented by the seabed to grow his plants. The humidity under these bubbles stays between 80% and 90% thanks to evaporation, and the condensation provides fresh water for the plants, which receive enough light from the surface (60%). According to the company, growing underwater provides thermal stability because there is little diurnal variation in the temperature of the water. This method of cultivation produces more basil than average. The experiment has worked so well that Sergio Gamberini planted lettuce, mushrooms, tomatoes, strawberries and beans this summer.