Scratch-build Garden Nursery Uses Arduino Monitoring

Starting your garden indoors helps to ensure large yields. This is because the plants get a head start before it’s warm enough for them to be put in the ground. But the process involves a fair amount of labor, ensuring that the lights are turned on and off at the right times each day, and that the temperature for germination and growth, as well as humidity, hit a certain target. It’s obvious that a bit of automation would be nice, and this Arduino-based garden nursery does just that. One of the things that sets this project apart is that it shows you how to go from an empty room to the bounty of plant starters seen here.

For the most part the equipment is what you’d expect, seed trays and covers, tray warming mats, and fluorescent light fixtures. the whole thing is given a small footprint thanks to an adjustable shelving unit. The Arduino is used in conjunction with a Sprout Board to add connectivity for switching the lights and warming mats. This is just a matter of driving a relay to switch mains voltage and can take any number of forms, including this home automation project we saw the other day.

[Thanks Tom]

17 thoughts on “Scratch-build Garden Nursery Uses Arduino Monitoring

    1. Love the comments. Just to clarify, I grow between 50 and 75 tomato plants per year and donate them to needy families and organizations to help people out. I live in Utah and it’s not a place to grow alternative crops even if I had an interest. Indoor yields and jump starting plants each year is absolutely an interest and having that independence is a fun and rewarding hobby.

      Jared Bouck

  1. I’m sure this is only room for the growing seedlings. to the quantity of cuttings can be seen, there is still a large growth chamber. this is not a culture for their own use but a grower of weed. since this thing for large plants is not suitable.

  2. Believe it or not some people are still interested in growing legal (I know weed isn’t illegal everywhere and admittedly I would if I could) plants and starting from seed indoor is a cheaper way to grow. Fluorescent lights wouldn’t grow a very happy looking mature plant either (weed or tomatoes)since they are pretty demanding, high energy plants.

    Granted it’s June now; this would have been relevant in Jan. or Feb. my plants are already in soil. I started mine in front of a window and they did fine, if a little stretched out.

  3. Nice idea and compact. Thinking about doing this next year after bad luck in simply putting a tray on the window and hoping seeds would sprout (even with a cover and heat mat). I think with the sun moving overhead, it tends to cause seedlings to fall over. Better to have a light source at top all the time.

    1. I rotated my trays each day (sometimes two or three times a day once they were taller)
      to counteract phototropism. Small grow light is definitely better. With the price of metal halide and high pressure sodium lamps (especially the ballasts and kWh)

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