Exactly a week has passed since New Year's eve, and we've finally wrapped our head around the fact that it's again time for fresh starts. But before we really kickstart the New Year, we'd like to take a brief second to mark down the key moments for us from 2015. Thank you for believing in Click & Grow and helping us experience these big moments. Happy New Year!
1. Bringing the future of food to the next level: The Smart Farm & Robot Garden prototype launch
Last year, we announced to the world that we're ready to take the next steps towards shaping the future of food by launching the big Smart Farm and the smaller Robot Garden prototypes. The launches were extremely successful (even WIRED got really excited) and proved that the world is becoming more conscious of how our actions today affect the availability of fresh produce in the future and is ready to accept solutions.
Now we've come back to the drawing board to hopefully introduce you all with the improved and finalized versions of the Click & Grow farms this year!
2. Launching the three most requested refills of all times: Wild Strawberry, Parsley and Peppermint
After receiving thousands of messages saying you'd love to try growing strawberries, parsley and peppermint in your Click & Grows, we finally managed to do it - we launched the Parsley, Wild Strawberry and the Peppermint Refills for Smart Herb Garden. Needless to say, they're now some of our most popular refills. And they seem to be growing really well for you all as well! By the way, we're having fresh and all-natural Smart Herb Garden-grown strawberries as an afternoon snack right now. Yes, in January.
3. Enabling the Smart Herb Garden to grow literally anything: The Experimental Refill launch
Our R&D department is always busy testing all the plants you're requesting to grow in your Smart Herb Gardens. However, since the tests are being done pretty thoroughly and all over the world, it does take some time for the refill to get from the idea to the launch. And that made us think - couldn't we launch a seedless refill where you can conduct your own experiments too? You'll get to grow the plants you want but that we currently don't offer, we'll get to see the results of your experiments, and maybe even speed up the whole launch process of a plant!
What haven't we seen growing in your Experimental Refills… There's been everything from chives and pumpkins to weed! If you haven't shared your experience with the Experimental Refill yet, post a picture on Instagram, with a hashtag #clickandgrow and #experimentalrefill!
4. Adding first flowers to the Smart Herb Garden refill selection: The Lavender and Petunia launch
After we saw the first Petunia test, we instantly decided to add flowers to the Smart Herb Garden plant selection. It looked really impressive and charmed us with its subtle and sweet scent, and we knew it's going to be a hit. Reminiscing, the Petunia Refill for Smart Herb Garden might even be crowned as the most effortless and perfect launch of ours!
Right after R&D showed us Petunia, they brought out Lavender as well. At the time, it didn't look impressive at all, but it has been a dream of ours to grow it since the very first prototype of Click & Grow. So the R&D went back to the lab, and after long and unsuccessful tests where the Lavender grew too tall, too thin, too woody etc., we finally got it right. And then again and again until we finally launched it! True story of persistence - good job, R&D!
5. Giving our basil selection a real boost: The Dwarf Basil and Red Basil Refill launch
After having lots of fun with Mini Tomatoes, Chili Peppers, Peppermints, Strawberries, Petunias, Lavenders etc., we all always seem to go back to growing the good old Basil. Why? It's simple, gorgeous, versatile, yet with a lot of character. So why not launch a couple more types? So we went with it and launched the royal-looking Red Basil (it's actually the key ingredient in one of Martha Stewart's favorite cocktails!) and our gardener's favorite - the Dwarf Basil, which is so good looking we can't even handle it. It looks more like a decorative plant than a simple basil!
6. Helping people to reach their fitness goals and live cleaner and healthier: The Stevia Refill launch
There's a lot of health nuts among the Click & Growers. And after discovering how little people know that the oh-so-loved stevia powder is actually a plant, we knew we have to launch it for the Smart Herb Garden. So that instead of reaching for the bleached powder that's full of chemicals, they could simply pick a stevia leaf from their Click & Grow. Even in our offices, we constantly have Stevia growing to get our sugar cravings under control - it's exactly like eating a candy! Except that it's good for you.
7. Getting the Smart Herb Garden to move: The Mimosa Refill launch
Now this is probably the most fun plant in the history of Click & Grow. We still remember how confused we were when our gardener asked us to come to the lab and touch this plant, and the “Woooooooooow” that went around the room when it started MOVING. Ever since then, launching Mimosa was one of our top priorities. And it seems we're not the only ones who think that this is a plant that's basically a tech gadget.
8. Starting the “Cats, plants & rock'n'roll” movement around Click & Growers: The Catnip Refill launch
We have a few great birthday month surprises! 1) We have just launched the first flower refills for Smart Herb Garden!!! Head over to our website to check out our gorg Lavender and Petunia. 2) Together with the ?s, we've also launched CATNIP!!! So your cat can have a party while you're sipping a calming catnip tea ?
We like having fun, and we know that you do too. So it didn't surprise us much that the launch of Catnip was welcomed with open arms and loud “YEAH!”s. Now there's a lot more happy cats (that love humans!!!) out there in the world and calmer people - even though Catnip acts as a stimulant for cats, it's actually a tranquilizer for humans.
9. Speaking the truth about Christmas plants: The Hyssop launch
Fellas, there's a new plant in town! The ultimate Christmas plant. It adds the "Christmas" to many of Jamie Oliver's Christmas dishes. It makes an incredible Christmas beer (guess why the Belgian Débutante has made the best beer short lists countless times). It's 5 minutes away from becoming a superfood. And it heals literally everything. Click the link in the bio to meet HYSSOP! ?
For Christmas 2015, we wanted to launch something surprising and something Christmas-y. And so we did! A plant that very few know about and that takes a while to pronounce, but that has been one of Jesus' faves and is one of the key ingredients of many of Jamie Oliver's Christmas dishes. And it's pretty safe to say that Hyssop is the ultimate Christmas plant.
10. Growing up: Y CombinatorOne of the biggest moments for us as a company in both 2015 and ever was getting accepted in Y Combinator - the Harvard of startups. And so we spent the summer in Silicon Valley, working tirelessly to learn as much as possible on how to make Click & Grow fit your lifestyle the best. We've come out of it smarter, more experienced, more enthusiastic (if that's even possible) and ready to take on the next challenges and make 2016 also a year to remember.