While it’s easy to rattle off green tips that include seasonal seeds, watering at the correct time of day and cutting your blooms on the diagonal to keep them fresh, there’s now a new age of outdoor gadgets for the garden that could make things even simpler.
Thanks to eco-geek technology developed by horticulture and agriculture experts, smart sensors take the confusion out of something as uncomplicated as understanding the best location for your plants.
Spring is coming, so here are two ways to let technology look after your own backyard:
1. Sensors hidden inside gadgets that send information to your smartphone (via Bluetooth, to an app) are becoming key when it comes to understanding plant health.
The Edyn Garden Sensor can be jabbed into the soil of an indoor potplant – it’s shaped like a golf tee – and, using sensors, it will provide data that can inform you whether your plants need a nutrient boost or water top-up. It works on the four fundamental principles for a healthy garden: sunlight, temperature, moisture and fertiliser. It can even tell you the right plants for your condition and climate!
2. With inconsistent rainfall and looming water restrictions, a smart system will take the hassle out of knowing when to turn on the taps. Ask any gardening expert and they’ll quickly tell you it is all about balance – too much water kills plants, too little does the same.
Luckily, you can now buy smart controllers for preinstalled sprinkler systems (such as OpenSprinkler) that work with an app. Use it to program a customised water schedule that cleverly monitors online weather data – think more water when it’s dry, and so on. It’s easier than using an adjustable timer, because you can also control what happens on-the-go, using your mobile phone. Not only will you cut water waste, but you will lower your water bill in the long run.
You no longer need a green thumb to keep a garden lush; gadgets will do the trick.