The number of things that can be 3D printed is overwhelming—from casts, interactive toys and auto shift knobs, the options are mostly useful and sometimes just plain fun. Meanwhile, researchers continue to develop and experiment with new materials, from flexible plastics to meat to titanium. Now, a group of students at the University of Maribor in Slovenia have created printGREEN, a 3D garden printer.
The apparatus prints objects out of a mud-like grass mixture; anything from artwork to pots. Created from a modified CNC machine, the process features an instrument that's much like a cake decorating tool that helps produce clean lines and shapes. The magical grass producing mixture is pretty expected: soil, water and seeds.
See the machine at work in this logo-inspired test run:
From quick-growing home gardens during the winter to custom nature-inspired welcome mats, the possibilities are pretty exciting. (Especially for those urbanites who don't see much of the green stuff on a good day.) Not to mention we can finally keep those '90s-era Chia Pets where they belong—on the department store clearance shelves. Maybe sometime soon we'll be able to make our own in any shape or form we want. Sounds like a follow-up business/promotion plan for the machine to me.
Erika is the editorial assistant at Core77. When she isn't covering design, you can find her writing about music, food, and healthy living habits. But mostly music. She also has a strong affinity for hedgehogs, bowling, and bands with goofy names.