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Automated Urban Garden

Bluetooth Relay Pump Garden Soil Moisture Sensor Float Switch

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#1 ShVerni

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Posted 27 January 2014 - 05:05 AM

Hello,
 
I've finally come to a reasonably advanced stage on a project I've been wanting to do for a while: An automated urban garden. I've always liked the idea of houseplants, but never had the skill or the attention to detail to keep said plants alive. This seemed like the perfect opportunity to outsource the care of the plants to a Netduino.
 
Behold!
 

7.Assembled(small).jpg

 
At this point, the garden will automatically water plants, optionally using a soil moisture sensor. The reservoir that holds the water will alert you when it needs refilling. It also shines a grow lamp on the plants in a way that simulates the change in sunlight over the year. The whole thing can be controlled via Bluetooth and an Android application.
 
I've documented my experience, and most of the garden, here:
https://docs.google....mebhKZtPqfKpsQ/
 
And I've included all the code, and lots of other things, here:
https://drive.google...eE0&usp=sharing
 
I've also attached the code to this post.
 
It's not a hundred-percent finished yet, and is a bit crude, but hopefully I'll have some lovely flowers soon!
Attached File  Garden.zip   13.6KB   1 downloads



#2 roguemat

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Posted 27 January 2014 - 08:36 AM

Awesome!


I make Windows Phone stuff for beer money and rent (in order of priority). I've got a blog and am on the Twitter machine.


#3 wendo

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Posted 27 January 2014 - 08:37 AM

That's really cool!

 

Seeedstudio have a 4 relay shield available which may make fitting it in a box easier

 

http://www.seeedstud...tml?cPath=39_42

 

not cheaper though :).

 

You may want to think about insulating the bottom of the relay board, maybe some large heatshrink over the entire thing? Shorting anything onto the bottom of the relay board will likely result in the magic smoke escaping.



#4 ShVerni

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Posted 27 January 2014 - 03:56 PM

You may want to think about insulating the bottom of the relay board, maybe some large heatshrink over the entire thing? Shorting anything onto the bottom of the relay board will likely result in the magic smoke escaping.

That's a good point, though fortunately the plastic box is non-conducting. Still, some electrical tape certainly couldn't hurt! Also, that relay shield looks great! Maybe I can use that if I ever get to a version 2.0.



#5 Giuliano

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Posted 29 January 2014 - 12:03 AM

That's pretty awesome, thanks for sharing.



#6 Fahdil

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Posted 29 January 2014 - 10:20 AM

Good Business.... haha...

 

do you know your method so much help full for Tea Plantation. when the atmospheric temperature goes below  10-14C it will freeze the leaf. in Indonesia, when it's happen the plantation lost about 60% of normal harvest. 

 

the solution is, whenever the temperature goes below 15C(in example; need more observation), you just need to control water sprinkle above the leaf (smaller holes the better, we want the water vapor keep longer in the air.). as we know, that the water has a higher heat capacity than the air. so you can control the air temperature. :)

 

Cheers

 

 

this when science makes money.... :lol:



#7 ShVerni

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Posted 29 January 2014 - 03:30 PM

Good Business.... haha...

 

do you know your method so much help full for Tea Plantation. when the atmospheric temperature goes below  10-14C it will freeze the leaf. in Indonesia, when it's happen the plantation lost about 60% of normal harvest. 

 

the solution is, whenever the temperature goes below 15C(in example; need more observation), you just need to control water sprinkle above the leaf (smaller holes the better, we want the water vapor keep longer in the air.). as we know, that the water has a higher heat capacity than the air. so you can control the air temperature. :)

That's a very interesting application! It wouldn't be hard to integrate a termperature sensor. I'd love to hear about it if something like that is ever implemented!



#8 ShVerni

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Posted 05 February 2014 - 03:36 AM

Just a quick update. I'm pleased to say that my plants are growing well, and things are already looking like a proper garden (see the attached images for three and five days after planting).  

Attached File  Day_Three.jpg   202.57KB   3 downloadsAttached File  Day_Five.jpg   182.03KB   2 downloads

I've also added a second lamp to the garden, and updated the code a bit for reliability. I've updated the Google doc in the first post will all the gruesome details, as well as the code in that post.

#9 jrlyman3

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Posted 06 February 2014 - 02:19 PM

That is a great project!  I've been working on a similar project, so far I'm just monitoring the moisture level of the plant, but I got the pump this week and hope to get it hooked up soon :-).



#10 ShVerni

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Posted 06 February 2014 - 06:38 PM

That is a great project!  I've been working on a similar project, so far I'm just monitoring the moisture level of the plant, but I got the pump this week and hope to get it hooked up soon :-).

That sounds like a fun project, you'll have to let us know how it goes. Also, I'd be interested in knowing how well your moisture sensor is working, I'm having some doubts about mine; either my soil retains moisture really well or my plants don't drink a lot since the level never seems to change, or the sensor could be rater unreliable, of course.

 

Anyway, best of luck!



#11 ami

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Posted 05 March 2014 - 05:32 PM

Hi,

 

That sounds like an excellent project. I'm from NY as well and want to get started on a similar project since sunlight is a problem in my apartment like most others. I want to start off with just being able to provide ample light for the houseplants. I am very comfortable writing all the code but am not much of a hardware person so wasn't sure of the relays etc that I might need for the project.



#12 ShVerni

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Posted 05 March 2014 - 09:05 PM

Hello and welcome!

 

It's good to meet another NYC urban gardener! Providing light to your plants is definitely a good place to start, though I'd be interested to hear about where you end up taking your project. I have a complete parts list in the GoogleDoc I linked to in the first post which should give you an idea about hardware, but if you have any questions just let me know.

 

Good luck!



#13 hanzibal

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Posted 06 March 2014 - 11:49 AM

Great project!

If you need more sensors, you could try interfacing the Parrot Flower Power:
http://www.parrot.com/flowerpower/en/

It would require a Bluetooth LE module and probably hacking their protocol. The flower power is a bit expensive but there's also the SensorTag from Texas which is not miles away (not a coinsidence):
http://www.ti.com/tool/cc2541dk-sensor

#14 ShVerni

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Posted 06 March 2014 - 02:46 PM

Ooooh! I'll have to add those to my wishlist!



#15 hanzibal

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Posted 06 March 2014 - 09:31 PM

The SensorTag is just 25 dollars :-)

I got one, works perfecly with iOS devices but haven't got around getting a board for my Netduinos yet and turned out there's no BT LE drivers for my good old XP box (while as it is built into Win 7).

#16 Cuno

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Posted 07 March 2014 - 06:40 AM

Or the Rolls Royce among plant sensors:

 

www.koubachi.com

 

Most moisture sensors measure a mix of the substrate's other properties along with its humidity (e.g., amount of salt in the substrate), like the typical cheap electrical resistance sensors with two electrodes. A good sensor measures how much water could be sucked up by a plant in a certain amount of time, no matter what kind of substrate it is in.

 

I haven't too much confidence in the Parrot sensor yet, but their iPhone app is quite beautiful :-)



#17 hanzibal

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Posted 07 March 2014 - 06:55 AM

To think there are more than one manufacturer of such things, incredible really!

#18 ShVerni

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Posted 10 March 2014 - 09:03 PM

I have an excess of options here, once I have the time it looks like I'll have to make things a lot more sophisticated!



#19 ShVerni

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Posted 13 July 2014 - 04:02 PM

Hello,

 

Sorry for the long delay, but I wanted to share an update about the garden's beta run. Things worked very well, and even got a little out of hand as you can see by the last photo:

Attached File  Flower1.jpg   114.96KB   5 downloadsAttached File  Flower2.jpg   80.86KB   1 downloadsAttached File  Flower3.jpg   134.31KB   3 downloads

I've since removed the flowers as they began to wither, and I'm now considering my next round of planting. Overall, I'm quite pleased with how it worked!



#20 jrlyman3

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Posted 13 July 2014 - 07:28 PM

Wow that looks great!  What type of moisture sensor are you using?  How's it been working?

 

My PlantNanny (http://www.lymantech...nanny-part-one/) started giving me noise for the moisture level last week.  I pulled out the moisture sensor (a two prong fork like thing) and when I cleaned it off I found that the metal plating (probably copper) was completely corroded away.

 

Instead of buying a new one I took two pieces of #12 gauge copper electrical wire, secured them to the fork by wrapping some hookup wire around them, and soldered them to the sensor at the top of the fork.  It seems to be working, I guess we'll see how it goes.







Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: Bluetooth, Relay, Pump, Garden, Soil Moisture Sensor, Float Switch

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