In a testament to the harshness of Iceland’s climate, the island nation features a limited influence of endemic trees, as temperatures during late Fall through early Spring plunge to near freezing. Thus, the challenge is apparent for the agriculture community in providing a sustainable amount of locally grown produce for residents.
While the country enjoys a limited growing season outdoors, it is a bountiful phenomenon beneath the surface of the earth that fuels a surprisingly vibrant farming community. Iceland boasts a limitless supply of geothermal energy, as the nation sits in a seismically active zone, where subterranean lava flows produce literally a blistering supply of natural heat. With the onset of greenhouse technology perfected over the course of seven decades, the construct of housing for tropical gardens and the harnessing of the energy have created a synergy, resulting in the exciting reality of handful of farmers actually exporting produce to other parts of the globe.
In the remote village of Reykir, near the country’s North coast and nearly 120 miles away from the bustling capital of Reykjavik, teams from the University of Iceland’s local facility have been growing bananas since 1942.
Today, the number of banana trees numbers 100 individual and pristine specimens, which have successfully adapted to the greenhouse climate. The wondrous and colorful banana tropical paradise, features an array of plant species and provides an escape from the dreary and dark Icelandic winters. In carefully monitoring temperature, humidity and light, engineers, researchers and farmers, are able to grow just about any type of plant, thanks to a huge underworld assist from mother nature. The evolution of smart and remote innovative technologies, has opened up the expansion of thriving agricultural ventures smack dab in the middle of the Northern Atlantic ocean, and proves that through problem solving and a free market spirit, humans can adapt to a brutal climate.
WATCH: A Tour Of A Geothermal Greenhouse Tomato Growing Operation