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Sensors monitor hydroponic plants, offer feedback to gardeners

Lifestyle & Leisure

The Bitponics sensor and data service is now making the process of keeping a hydroponic garden easier by monitoring plant conditions.

Hydroponic gardening is rapidly becoming the gardening method of choice for urban dwellers with limited space and resources. Just as the GreenWheel, covered on these virtual pages not so long ago, is enabling hydroponics on a more homely scale, the Bitponics sensor and data service is now making the process easier by monitoring plant conditions. Bitponics’ customers receive hardware that comes with a variety of sensors able to detect water and air temperature, humidity, brightness and soil pH, all of which can affect how well plants grow in hydroponic systems. Gardeners create an online account where they are able to fill out information on the types of plants they are growing and their set up. They can also create a plan or let Bitponics suggest the best conditions for growing. The data collected by the sensors is then processed and displayed when the user logs into their account and notifications are given when gardeners need to take action. Alternatively, the device houses two power outlets which can be set on a timer and controlled through the website, enabling Bitponics to automatically alter light or water provision. Both the device and its firmware are open source, giving users freedom to adjust the system to their needs and it is possible to manually enter data. Bitponics was successfully funded by Kickstarter in June and will begin to ship the kit this month at an expected cost of USD 395 each. Are there any other ways that technology could benefit urban gardeners? Spotted by: Denise Kuperman



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