Food: Farming: Water
Rice Paddy Drums   (+5)  [vote for, against]
Rice paddy plantations on a series of rotating drums

Rice forms a large part of the staple diet in asia and in other parts of the world. However, available areas of crop land do not increase with population.

A large hollow drum (say 2m diameter, 10m long) would have its surface covered with a deep binding mesh for the rice plants to grow in. Rice plants grow in very wet conditions, so several drums would sit partially submerged in a bunded area filled with nutrient-rich water.

Each drum would be slowly rotated (~1 rpm) by way of highly geared-down wind turbine, waterwheel or generator, depending on what is locally available.

This set-up would be suited to hilly areas where mechanised large scale production is impractical. The drums provide a much greater surface area for crops, and because tending the plants could be done at eye-level, it would be easier on the backs of workers.
-- Adze, Oct 04 2005

Conceptually, this rotary hydroponic system. [half, Oct 04 2005]

"Raising and Transplanting Technology for Long Mat with Hydroponically Grown Rice Seedlings"
A way to get the garden started? [half, Oct 04 2005]

Now THATS modern agriculture... (waits for all the real farmers to tell me why it won't work)

I know that roots don't like light, and plants are accustomed to a 1G unchanging orientation, but this might be fun.

sp: paddy
-- normzone, Oct 04 2005

Sounds like a rotating drum flavor of hydroponics. I assume that the plant will grow toward the inside of the drum, otherwise it will be upside down when going in to the water. Getting sunlight inside the drum could be a hurdle.

It appears to work with an artificial light source, though growing rice isn't specifically mentioned. See link.
-- half, Oct 04 2005

[normzone] "Paddy" comes from the Malay word "padi" (meaning rice), but the latter's not in so I'll change it.

Interesting idea to plant them inside the drum, [half] - I had envisioned them on the outside, even though the continual submerging worried me also. But I figured that since most of the rice plant seems to be submerged a lot of the time anyway, it might not be a problem. Any rice farmers out there might like to comment.
-- Adze, Oct 05 2005

Omegagarden is straight out of a pot growers paridise.
-- Antegrity, Oct 05 2005

plants use gravity to direct root growth down and leaf growth up - the rotating drum would interfere with that.
-- briancady413, Mar 06 2008

random, halfbakery