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OfflineAlan Rockefeller


Registered: 04/20/08
Posts: 17
Last seen: 13 years, 9 months
Automated gardening
    #189885 - 01/27/09 01:15 AM (15 years, 1 month ago)

What type of stuff is available to automate gardening?

What is the best way to set up a water container with a relay to deliver water for maybe 3 minutes per day? 

Is it practical to try to measure the amt of water in the soil / plant, and add water when it needs it?  Or is it better to just give it a certain amount of water? 


Is there even a practical way to measure how much a plant needs water?

If there is no reliable way for an electronic sensor to tell if a plant needs water, maybe its best to hook up a separate relay to each plant, and monitor it all via video / internet / rf link.  That way you can just add water when you see that it neeeds it.

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Invisiblecaptain.koons
Failed Botanist
Registered: 06/25/08
Posts: 6,170
Re: Automated gardening [Re: Alan Rockefeller]
    #189892 - 01/27/09 02:29 AM (15 years, 1 month ago)

Hydroponics is the best automated gardening I think hydroponics basically means automated watering, ebb and flow = automated, low maintaince, good results.

Unless you mean automated water in like a soilless grow? You would use top fed drip immiters more then likely.

Bed time, I'll check this thread later.


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TROLLS NEED LOVE TOO!

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Offlineyellownotepad
Pharmaceutical Agriculturalist
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Registered: 06/22/08
Posts: 1,702
Last seen: 11 years, 8 months
Re: Automated gardening [Re: Alan Rockefeller]
    #189923 - 01/27/09 08:13 AM (15 years, 1 month ago)

is there a reason you need to spend money to find out what a finger stuck into the dirt will tell you?

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Offline0xYg3n
el cid
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Registered: 04/20/08
Posts: 2,591
Last seen: 15 years, 1 day
Re: Automated gardening [Re: yellownotepad]
    #189925 - 01/27/09 08:20 AM (15 years, 1 month ago)

Maybe he needs an automated system?

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Invisiblemhbound
Ballin out at all cost
Male User Gallery


Registered: 09/22/08
Posts: 8,144
Loc: High Flag
Re: Automated gardening [Re: 0xYg3n]
    #189928 - 01/27/09 08:25 AM (15 years, 1 month ago)

http://www.growtronix.com/store/

There are others look around that is just an example.


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Suck my balls America

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OfflineAlan Rockefeller


Registered: 04/20/08
Posts: 17
Last seen: 13 years, 9 months
Re: Automated gardening [Re: mhbound]
    #189993 - 01/27/09 12:40 PM (15 years, 1 month ago)

Quote:

is there a reason you need to spend money to find out what a finger stuck into the dirt will tell you?




I was thinking for outdoor grows.  I should have said that in my post, it doesn't make much sense to automate something indoors when you still have to do manual things like adjust the height of the lights.    Some of these places near me are extremely inaccessible and its quite a crawl through the brush to get there.  And of course its safest to visit as few times as possible.

Perhaps its best to use a gravity fed system from a stream, but a RF transmitter connected to a soil moisture probe would be really useful to save all your plants in the middle of the summer when the intake gets clogged with leaves. 

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Offlineyellownotepad
Pharmaceutical Agriculturalist
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Registered: 06/22/08
Posts: 1,702
Last seen: 11 years, 8 months
Re: Automated gardening [Re: Alan Rockefeller]
    #190028 - 01/27/09 02:40 PM (15 years, 1 month ago)

for outdoor grows i've read about people making a pvc manifold with small holes in it that gets buried beneath the soil, with a tube coming up to the surface that you screw a 2 liter bottle into and it automatically keeps the soil wet by flooding water down into the manifold which then soaks into the soil.  you might look into doing something like that, as its more efficient (keeping soil wet where the roots are, and not depending on water soaking from teh surface all the way down).

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OfflineAlan Rockefeller


Registered: 04/20/08
Posts: 17
Last seen: 13 years, 9 months
Re: Automated gardening [Re: yellownotepad]
    #190249 - 01/28/09 01:54 AM (15 years, 1 month ago)

Great idea.  What kind of manifold should I use?

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OfflineAlan Rockefeller


Registered: 04/20/08
Posts: 17
Last seen: 13 years, 9 months
Re: Automated gardening [Re: Alan Rockefeller]
    #208726 - 03/25/09 01:48 PM (14 years, 11 months ago)

I have found about a half dozen large scale commercial marijuana farms this mushroom season so I can give you some pointers from the pros. 

All of them are in impassible areas - the brush is so thick that its just not possible to walk through.  If you do go through it takes a half hour to get 30 feet and you end up covered with ticks.

The water source is very important.  All the gardens are within a quarter mile of a stream.  The pickup must be very stealth, so it carries water away from the stream but can not be seen.  There are a few ways to do that properly, use natural stream features to hide it.  Once the water goes downhill for awhile you can actually run the line up and over significant sized hills. 

Most of the advanced farms use rain bird battery operated drip controllers.  If you don't want to run a line all the way to a stream you could use a big plastic bin to hold the water or a 55 gal drum, then fill that up.  That is a lot of work and leaves a big trail from the water source to the garden, so its recommend that you have gravity fed water on tap.  One controller generally services a whole garden area, about a hundred plants.  Once the irrigation is set up the farms are highly automated and don't require much human intervention. 

The farmers never clear the trees and brush entirely - doing so makes them real obvious in google earth.  Instead they clear out the low laying brush and keep the upper layer for cover.  The plants don't get full sun but they get enough.  The plants are tied down if they get too tall and start to reach above the upper canopy.

The farms are usually located about 2/10ths of a mile away from the nearest trail or road.

Here is a garden I came across last weekend:



The fencing is very important, every farm I have found has one.  It keeps deer and rabbits out.  Even though the fencing isn't very tall, deer can't jump it due to the very thick brush. 

Another thing that 100% of the farms out here have is d-con rodent pellets, apparently thats very important.

Some rain bird drip timers



Evidence of police



All white buckets and things need to be painted green and stashed under heavy brush


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