Indoor Innovation at Oberlin Means Fresh Produce in Winter

Bush beans sprout on plants growing indoors at Oberlin College

Submitted by Eric Pecherkiewicz, Registered Dietician

Winter in Ohio isn’t exactly known for being prime produce season. But students at Oberlin College, in Oberlin, OH, are able to enjoy locally-grown produce all winter long, thanks to Dascomb Dining Hall Chef/Manager Christ Brunst.

Chef Chris started his indoor garden last winter with an industrial-size grow light and some herbs and greens. He’s now experimenting with an eight-pot capacity hydroponic water system. Through his efforts, the café is able to serve fresh arugula, mesclun greens, bush beans, French radishes, basil, cilantro, and Italian parsley plucked straight from the garden. “I enjoy seeing the students standing in front of the garden and looking at the progress of the herbs and vegetables,” says Chris. “I hope this sparks their interest in growing food for themselves!”