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Water house plants automatically
Water house plants automatically
Video: Water house plants automatically
Video: Indoor Plant Watering System Review - DIY Automatic Drip Irrigation Kit - Water Plants On Vacation 2023, February
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Watering house plants automatically via app - sounds like a permanent solution for brown thumbs and is practical on vacation. Is the technology really ready to allow flowers to be watered using the app? We present irrigation systems that supply your house plants (almost) independently.

Table of contents Table of contents Watering house plants automatically: 4 clever solutions

  • Five automatic irrigation systems compared
  • Other gadgets for houseplants
  • Problems of smart irrigation systems
  • This is what the future looks like
  • Simple solutions without electricity and smartphone

Table of contents Table of contents Watering house plants automatically: 4 clever solutions

  • Five automatic irrigation systems compared
  • Other gadgets for houseplants
  • Problems of smart irrigation systems
  • This is what the future looks like
  • Simple solutions without electricity and smartphone

If you want to convert your home into a smart home step by step and want to control everything comfortably with your smartphone, you would like to hang up the watering can forever.

Smart irrigation systems are automatic systems that are also equipped with a WLAN interface. The home network recognizes the smart gadgets and systems and integrates them. You then access the data via the app and can monitor the status, trigger watering processes, plan irrigation intervals or cut off the plants from the water supply. Ideally, completely smart systems have a sensor that measures the moisture and adapts it if necessary. Unfortunately, such a desired product is not (yet) on the market. However, it will only be a matter of time before upgrading takes place here.

Automatic systems that work without an app, but instead use a timer, offer more sophisticated alternatives.

Irrigation

automatic

Executions features Products
Smart System with intelligent

Irrigation control

according to individual needs

WiFi connection

costly, little

Selection smart

irrigation

adjustable via app

Parrot Pot

Automatically Irrigation systems with

Pump, some are with one

App controllable

via timer

or temperature sensor

adjustable, moderate price

Gardena City Gardening, Blumat, Lazy leaf

Five automatic irrigation systems compared

The Parrot Pot is the only one that works really smart, because it measures the sun's rays, temperature, fertilizer content and soil moisture and adjusts its function to the plant requirements after a few watering cycles.

With the Parrot Flower Power app you have access to the data via smartphone and can make some settings. The app also provides access to a plant database. Here you can find out about the needs of your plants - provided you know the botanical name. Because with the German names you unfortunately cannot get any further.

Amazon Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars.

Price: approx. 60 euros

Parrot Pot
Parrot Pot

The attachment made of a water-permeable ceramic cone with a plastic thread fits on a standard PET bottle. The bottle is filled with water, the cap is screwed on and the bottle is then placed upside down in the pot with the cone down. Aquasolo is available in three versions that allow either 70, 200 or 300 milliliters of water to pass through each day. The houseplants practically water themselves.

Tip: Test the system in peace beforehand, because the larger the bottle, the higher the risk that the bottle will tip over.

Amazon Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars.

Price: approx. 25 euros

Aquasolo 10420 Bewässerungskegel
Aquasolo 10420 Bewässerungskegel

The Blumat system uses the capillary forces of the potting soil to water the houseplants. This is because they ensure that water is constantly drawn in. The system consists of a hose connected to a clay cone. The end of the hose sucks the water out of a reservoir. The greater the water requirement of a plant, the more irrigation cones you can use.

Using Blumat is not that easy. Users must carefully ensure that there is no air bubble in the hose. This would interrupt the capillary suction and cut off the water supply. The small diameter of the hoses means that the reservoir is placed a maximum of 20 centimeters below the clay cone. Otherwise, not enough water runs to the clay cone or the supply is completely interrupted. The reservoir should not be set up above the clay cone, otherwise the water may flow in actively and the plant will be flooded.

Amazon Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars.

Price: approx. 18.00 euros

BLUMAT Wasserspender für Zimmerpflanzen (6 Stück)
BLUMAT Wasserspender für Zimmerpflanzen (6 Stück)

The Gardena system works with a small submersible pump and a timer. Users determine the flow rates and the duration of the supply. Up to 36 plants can be supplied with holiday irrigation. The water supply takes place via a hose system that regulates the different flow rates via a distributor. There are three options to choose from: 15, 30 or 60 milliliters per minute. Each distributor allows a maximum of 12 plants to be watered. For the system to work optimally, the plants are best grouped according to water requirements.

The advantage of the Gardena City Gardening System is that you can use any water reservoir, as the submersible pump in combination with the timer controls the water supply automatically. Unwanted oversupply is practically impossible. As a guideline, it can be said that about 15 small and medium-sized plants manage with a 10 liter supply over 14 days - provided the temperatures in the apartment are between 18 and 25 degrees.

The shortness of the hose of 3 meters and the maximum possible delivery head of 1.80 meters can be felt as a disadvantage, which significantly restrict the location of the water reservoir and distributor. So you should set up all plants in your absence as centrally as possible so that the automatic irrigation system can be fully utilized.

Amazon Rating: 3 out of 5 stars.

Price: approx. 80 euros

Other gadgets for houseplants

  • The Royal Gardening Plant Keeper is a helpful gadget that, as a plant keeper, monitors the condition of a plant in terms of exposure, temperature, moisture and nutrient supply. It also offers users an extensive database of over 5, 000 plants. There you will find all the necessary information about the plants and can specify the supply of water appropriately.
  • The apps PlantSnap and Picture this (for iPhone and Android) and Garden Flower (iPhone) help to identify plants. Because what use is an automatic irrigation system if the user is not aware of the plant requirements? If you do not know which plant you actually have on the window sill, you can get information here and then use the information in the plant monitor.
Royal Gardineer Gießanzeiger: 4in1-Pflanzensensor SUN-141 mit Bluetooth und App-Kontrolle, 4er-Set
Royal Gardineer Gießanzeiger: 4in1-Pflanzensensor SUN-141 mit Bluetooth und App-Kontrolle, 4er-Set

Problems of smart irrigation systems

The biggest - and so far unresolved - challenge is that there is a large variety of plants with very different needs. Some plants shrivel up when the water supply is too high - they literally drown. For example cacti, succulents or orchids. Other plants in turn need a comparatively large amount of water. Arrow root (Calathea), violin fig (Ficus lyrata) or coconut palms, for example, like evenly moist soil. If they are neglected, they will suffer irreparable damage.

And then there are plants with a medium water requirement - it is difficult to program. In addition, each plant has more or less “thirst” depending on the tanning, temperature, pH value, fertilizer and aeration. Last but not least, it depends on the growing season in which a plant is currently. In the main growing season, the plant needs a lot more water to develop new leaves, flowers or fruits. In the winter months, a rest phase is planned for most plants. Then the water requirement is low.

In short: A system that works smartly and reliably with all plants in view of these challenges can basically only be operated by a plant professional who knows all these details.

Since an average private user usually lacks the necessary specialist knowledge of the requirements of individual plants, the current smart systems are designed relatively simply. Therefore, users shouldn't expect too much from them. At best, some smart auxiliary products can tell when the soil in the pot is moist and when it is dry. The system does not know whether the plant rooted in it has to be predominantly moist or predominantly dry.

For this reason, currently available gadgets and automatic irrigation solutions are designed to supply water regardless of plant requirements when a defined time or other predetermined event is reached. With the app you can use the currently available irrigation solutions to check whether there is still enough irrigation water available, but not whether the plant is sufficiently watered. This is only possible if you also use a smart gadget that measures the moisture in the plant ball. It is then your job to link the two pieces of information together and draw your conclusions from them.

This is what the future looks like

However, the development of smart irrigation systems continues. In the meantime, solutions for urban space are in the starting blocks, which should enable a mini vegetable garden in practically any environment. GreenBox offers a garden with integrated lighting, irrigation and fertilization. The whole thing can be monitored via an app. Intervention should no longer be necessary, because the system literally grows the plants fully automatically. You only have to harvest.

PlantCube works similarly, but on a larger scale. It is a self-contained system in which herbs and salads are produced fully automatically. You only need to add water to the system.

Although the technicians are working to raise the plants without a substrate, which reduces water consumption and largely eliminates pathogens, plants will not be able to survive without water even in a thousand years. In this regard, nature cannot be tricked by smart systems.

Simple solutions without electricity and smartphone

In addition to the trendy, but often still limited, irrigation systems with app, the mechanical ones should not be forgotten. These work without electricity and smartphone. This includes:

  • Irrigation set with bottle and spikes
  • Self-watering pot with water reservoirs
  • Irrigation probes with containers
  • Hydrum irrigation hose
  • Irrigation balls as water dispensers
  • Self-irrigation wick

All irrigation systems have in common that they access a water reservoir and the plant regulates the water supply through the natural suction itself. The laws of biology and biophysics are used here, which works better for some systems and less well for others. It is important that the water flow is of the right size and that neither too much nor too little liquid is released to the plant.

Alina Günder

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