Beehives, fish-filled lakes: Dubai home gardens where fruits, vegetables are grown win Dh100,000

They grew everything from strawberries to bananas, celery, white radish and medicinal herbs in the desert


Sahim Salim


Waad Barakat

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Photo: Supplied
Photo: Supplied

Published: Sun 2 Jun 2024, 11:47 AM

Last updated: Sun 2 Jun 2024, 10:26 PM

Three Dubai residents collectively won Dh100,000 for their stunningly green home gardens where fruits, vegetables and plants of all kinds were grown.

The residents were the top three winners of the Dubai Municipality’s ‘Best Homegrown Produce Competition’ that encouraged residents to grow agricultural products and crops at home.

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Dr Sultana Osman Yousef Suleiman won Dh50,000 for her garden in Jumeirah’s District 1. She cultivated multiple fruits and vegetables using aeroponic systems, where plants’ roots hang suspended in the air — eliminating the need to plant them in soil — and nutrients are delivered in the form of a fine mist.

Photo: Supplied
Photo: Supplied

Her garden also has an advanced system for cooling greenhouses, a water treatment and recycling system, as well as bacteria to improve the quality of irrigation water. Her garden also features a drying system for agricultural products and distinctive a distillation system for aromatic plants.

“I’ve had a passion for farming since childhood,” she said. “I was inspired by my mother’s dedication to cultivating vegetables, fruits, and flowers in our backyard.”

Dr Sultana Osman Yousef Suleiman
Dr Sultana Osman Yousef Suleiman

Bees, lakes and more

Naeema Mohammed Al Amiri’s garden in Al Garhoud won her Dh30,000. The innovative use of an aquaponic system and abundance of plant species made this garden a top pick for the panellists. It features a lake that several fish call home. Water from this body is filled with nutrients and can be used as plant fertilisers. An advanced underground irrigation system effectively minimises water wastage and evaporation. The garden features beehives, which play a crucial role in pollinating plants and producing honey.

Photo: Supplied
Photo: Supplied

Among her produce are bananas, bougainvillea, lettuce, rosemary and carrots.

“From beekeeping to fish farming, I expanded my interests and gradually embraced modern farming techniques. I even established a community garden for our neighbourhood,” she said.

“I encourage anyone with space to consider planting … in their backyard. Because a home without a garden feels incomplete and agriculture truly nurtures the soul. It also offers plenty of room for family bonding and enjoyment.”

Using gravity for agriculture

Jamal Abdullah Almuheiri won Dh20,000 for his green space that produces a wide range of fruits and vegetables. His garden stands out for its cultivation of Azolla, a feed source for poultry and livestock. By using a gravity-powered hydroponic system, Almheiri can produce high-quality dried produce, while also conserving energy.

Announced in March this year, the contest saw 109 participants.

Photo: Supplied
Photo: Supplied


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