From the moment man designed and built hos, tractors, and combined harvesters to help with farming, it was abundantly clear that technology and gardening can work well together. Granted, we are now a little more advanced than our hoe-wielding ancestors, and although we still use tractors and lawnmowers, all the same, we have smart options available for our gardening needs now. Smart garden technology is no longer so far-fetched an idea, and with the right implementation, it just might be the next best thing for farming.
A Garden with a Mind of Its Own - Smart Garden Technology
Who says the same technology that powers your motion sensor security lights or your garage door cannot be used to run your garden? Think about it, what are automatic sprinklers if not smart garden technology that makes our lives easier? What about mechanized lawnmowers and automated drip irrigation systems? How about hydroponics? What about how we use weather forecasts and weather sensors to our advantage? Isn't all this just different ways through which we are already smart gardening?
The truth is, as technology advances, so does our scope of its use! Smart gardening has been coming for a long time, and it is only logical that we embrace it now while we are at the height of our technological ingenuity. Of course, there will be better smart gardening tools and systems as time goes, but for now, here are some of the most beneficial smart gardening systems available to you.
Different Types of Smart Garden Technology
Smart technology does not have to be daunting or confusing. Yes, there are many different options available; all of which seem to do the same things or seem to complicate your gardening life a little more, but once you understand the fundamentals of smart gardening, you will be better placed to make excellent choices.
Simply put, smart gardening technology should help you do the following:
If you look carefully, you will find that there is a system designed and engineered to do all of these things and more. With that in mind, here are some smart garden and lawn care technological options you should consider:
1. Smart Sprinkler Systems
One of the most challenging aspects of maintaining a lush and healthy garden is knowing when to sprinkle water on it and just how much water to sprinkle during the ideal times. In many cases, homeowners just tend to eyeball it and guess how much they should sprinkle which, needless to say, doesn't always lead to the best results. But with a smart sprinkler system, you can take the guessing game out of your gardening. The best smart sprinklers in the market:
The good thing about many of the smart sprinkler options available in the market today is that they are can use your existing irrigation system. This means that you do not have to overhaul the entire garden just to have your smart sprinklers installed. However, if you don't already have an irrigation system in place, you can get hose-fed smart sprinklers instead.
You need to keep an eye out on just how many zones you need covered because smart garden sprinklers vary in zone coverage capabilities (mostly between 6 to 16).
2. Smart Garden Plant Sensors
Plant sensors are devices that you place into the dirt next to your plants. These devices gather a ton of data on your garden and send that information to your phone or computer. You can actually use these both in and outdoors. Which means that plant sensors can really help with potted plants as well. Plant sensors essentially measure soil moisture all the while comparing that information to a database that is plant specific. The right kind of plant sensor will give you useful insight on what you need to do to ensure that the specific plant grows in the best possible conditions. It tells you:
The best plant sensor systems will even remind you when to water your plants via SMS. The right plant sensors will keep you well informed about the different plant species found in your garden and guide you towards getting optimal yields.
3. Robot Lawnmowers
It's only a matter of time till robots take over most of the workforce on this planet. In keeping with that goal, robot lawnmowers are now available for sale. This tech, however, has not had time to mature and as such, these lawnmowers are expensive and a little limited. This is mostly because they use the same tech that is used in electric dog collars; the lawnmowers navigate your garden in accordance with the perimeter wires buried around the area you want to be mowed. This means that you will have to dig these wires in before you can use your robot lawnmower. All that being said, the advantages of having a robot lawnmower are obvious. For one, you will no longer have to suffer the stares from the neighbors as you pace up and down your lawn trying to make sure that the grass is just at the right, homeowners association approved height. The other advantages are that you will always have a neatly mowed lawn since you can program the robot to make periodic passes every few days and it frees your time up for other ventures.
4. Smart Drip Irrigation Systems
When it comes to saving water and irrigation convenience, drip irrigation is by far the best option out there. In some systems, the irrigation pipes are above ground while others are buried below. As is the case with watering your garden, the question is always the same: when do you water the garden and how do you know when your plants have had enough or vice versa? With smart drip irrigation systems, this guesswork is taken out of the equation. These smart irrigation systems are controlled by moisture sensors that automatically send commands to turn on the system when the soil around your plants become to dry and turn the system off when the soil attains the right moisture level for your plant species.
5. Greywater Tanks
Smart gardening is about more than just using tech to make your work easier when it comes to gardening. It is also about finding easier ways to conserve water and repurpose already used water for your gardening needs. Did you know that you could water your garden with water from your bath or your washing machine? Yes, it might sound as if this water might poison your plants, but once it goes through the Greywater tank, it will be good enough for your plants. Designed to purify water for garden use, the Greywater tank uses UV radiation and a host of biological systems to clean the impurities found in your bath or washing machine water making it safe and good for gardening use. It is water conservation, and repurposing rolled up in one neat tank.
As much as smart gardening has a lot to do with the use of technology in the garden, your efforts can be better bolstered by different types of gardening practices as well. Practices that will ensure your garden has a better chance of thriving and that it will give you better yields. These practices include:
As technology advances so will smart gardening tools become more sophisticated. This is definitely something worth looking into if you are an enthusiastic gardener.
Things to Consider When Choosing Smart Garden Technology
The thing about most smart garden technology devices is that they rely on a strong internet connection. Which is just fine if you live in the city or in an area where broadband is not an issue but it can be a little tricky if you are out in the country. It is therefore imperative to take a few things into consideration before investing heavily into smart garden tech of any kind. Here are some things that you need to consider:
The best way to get through the myriad of smart gardening device options that are available today is first to decide what you want to do with your garden. What kind of plants do you want to grow and what kind of advantages do you need to ensure that those plants grow well. Once that is done, it will be easy to find the devices that help you achieve this result. More and more smart gardening gadgets are being invented every day, and it is an exciting time to be a tech-savvy gardener.