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Context

 

The food system is responsible for a third of global greenhouse gases. As a result, people are adopting more sustainable lifestyles to reduce their carbon footprint.

Background insights

Home gardening blooms around the world during coronavirus lockdowns

Reuters, 2020

Home gardens: a promising approach to enhance household food security and wellbeing

Agriculture & Food Security, 2013

Green spaces such as rooftop gardens can help reduce levels of air contaminants

Barreiro, 2012

vegetables grown in a garden
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Challenge

Climate change can be overwhelming, although lowering the environmental impact of our food consumption doesn’t require a massive lifestyle change, so how do we support our urban communities in growing their food?

Poster with final design

How might we help urban communities grow their own food to reduce their costs and environmental impact?

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Concept

While staying at home during the COVID-19 pandemic, many people took up new hobbies like cooking and painting. For some, this newfound time meant learning how to grow their food in their homes.

Whether on a roof or your patio, growing your own food is a fruitful endeavor. But without any previous experience, getting started can be difficult.

This application will enable everyone, everywhere to grow their own food.

plants
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Research

“Since lockdown, public interest in growing fruit and vegetables at home has soared. Seed packets are flying off shelves and allotment waiting lists are swelling, with one council receiving a 300% increase in applications. Fear of food shortages will have motivated some, but others with more time on their hands at home will have been tempted by the chance to relieve stress doing a wholesome family activity."

User Interviews Conducted

10

30 min interviews

Contextual Inquiries Conducted

5

2 week studies

Participants Profile

15

Local Gardenshop owners, Amateur Gardeners

Research insights

"The UK’s reliance on imports has been growing in recent decades. Currently, 84% of fruit and 46% of vegetables consumed in the UK are imported. Brexit and COVID-19 could threaten the steady supply, while the problems created by climate change, such as water scarcity, risk disrupting imports of food from abroad."

The National Interest, 2020

“ Millions of farmers have quit agriculture and, worryingly, very few from the current generation are entering the sector”

 DownToEarth, 2019

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Snippet of news article

Users

I interviewed people who turned into avid gardeners during the lockdown period exploring their green side by growing a variety of plants, including flowers and vegetables, in their gardens and balconies. Based on the results, I identified three main user groups; people lose motivation if they don't see quick results,  people who want to know everything about their scientific details about their plants and garden, and people who forget to water their plants regularly and end up killing the plants.

 

Understanding the user’s motivations and their problems helped me identify opportunities and create user-centered designs.

persona 1

I want to see quick results!!

persona 2

The Pantomath

persona 3

I Forget to water my plants :(

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Information Architecture

Before Wireframing, I created the information architecture diagram to better organize the navigation system of the app

Information architecture diagram
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Final Designs

After testing the first set of wireframes, I iterated based on user feedback and created the final prototype using Figma. 

Final designs

Onboarding

When customers first sign in to the app, they first see what their friends are up to with their workout goals and check if their friends are open to people joining them for a workout. 

Onboarding

Watch Tutorials

 

Whether you’re a gardening expert or a newbie trying to find a green thumb, there’s always more to learn.  These tutorials will give you access to the collected knowledge of an entire community of gardening experts.

Watch tutorials

Check your monthly planting guide based on your location

 

The feature provides you with helpful information, with climate-specific planting guides based on your location. It will let you know when seeds should go in the ground and when you should expect your produce to ripen, eliminating guesswork as you plan your ideal garden.

Planting guide

Monitor your garden

The feature gives you the ability to track the progress of your garden as it grows. You will even get automatic about the weather in your location. You will even get reminders when you need to do essential garden tasks like planting, watering, fertilizing, etc.

monitoring garden

Plant new plants

The garden box layout will help you in landscape designing, plant arrangement, and and makes sure that your plant gets enough sunlight.

plant new plants

Outcome

Through our research, we discovered most of the people living in urban areas care as much about being green as anyone else. Yet, the complexity of taking care of these plants and unfamiliarity with gardening prevents them from adopting this sustainable lifestyle. This app addresses these problems by helping users in all aspects of growing a beautiful garden, and thereby people can reduce their environmental impact.

You can access the interactive prototype here

“I love this app because it is so easy to use and track when you water your plants”

A resident who loves gardening, Bangalore

"Great idea for an app. I truly hope that you continue to work on and improve it for decades to come"

Environmentalist, Greenpeace Bangalore

“ I love this design. It will be a game-changer for growing and monitoring the progress of my food garden from sowing to harvesting.”

Gardener, Windgates Apartments 

Learnings

This project has made me more aware of the environmental impact of our food system, and I’ve since become more conscious of my efforts towards a sustainable lifestyle.

I’ve improved my design skills and learned how to use Figma. The iterative approach has also taught me not to settle for the first idea but to test and iterate to improve it.

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