Today we’re welcoming Nick Warnes, the founder of Reclaimed Micro Gardens (RMG). Nick has started numerous non-profits and RMG is his first shot at creating a for-profit with a purpose we love- edible table-side gardens! Nick is reinforcing the idea that a garden can be grown just about anywhere.
Garden Eats: Did you grow up around plants?
Nick (RMG): My love for plants started in the woods of Michigan, where I grew up. That continued into a degree in biology where the wonder of gardening began to take hold.
GE: We noticed you’re located around downtown Los Angeles. What about urban living inspired you to create your design?
RMG: People are short on space in Los Angeles. Many people would like to garden but cannot because they live in apartments or condos. We wanted to create a product that everyone could utilize to practice their green thumbs.
GE: We love everything about microgreens- why did you choose this focus and what interesting information did you come across in your research?
RMG: Our initial products were around indoor gardens. We tried numerous prototypes. We knew that we wanted our gardens to be upcycled, but the challenge of that was creating a reproducable product. When we came across the idea of using reclaimed wood, we loved the concept, but knew that we couldn’t grow large plants in 2x4s. When the idea of microgreen intersected with the reclaimed wood, we knew that we were onto something interesting. There are two things that I love most about microgreens: 1.) Everyone can grow them. 2.) Their exponential nutrition!
GE: What’s your fave use for microgreens?
RMG: Tacos! Salads, sandwiches and pizza are also perfect.
GE: Why did you choose organic walnut oil to coat the gardens?
RMG: We studied the best options and found the walnut oil provided the best seal. It also gives the gardens a beautiful color and smell.
GE: Do you upcycle at home? What efforts do you make in your lifestyle to live green and practice sustainability?
RMG: Since moving to LA, my wife and I try to never buy new products. We consistently shop in stores that encourage recylcing, antiques or upcycled products. We also love flea markets!
GE: Cool! Us too. Where do you see or where would you like to see gardening and edible growing go in the near future?
RMG: I think that the next step needs to be placing edible gardens on tables in restaurants. The options of salt and pepper are minimal. Microgreens at tables would mean better and more nuanced flavor profiles.
GE: That’s an awesome idea Nick- we now have ours growing in our big picture window in the dining room so guests can help themselves! Thanks for joining us today and happy gardening!
N I C K lives with his wife Whitney in Los Angeles, California. He loves putting his microgreens on his tacos and always eats the roots. Check out how you can get Reclaimed Micro Gardens in your home or restaurant here!