Grow box with monitoring and remote control system

I'm Vivi and I live in Belgium. I actually don't green fingers and I don't really have a garden for myself although I'd love to (i'm living in a small apartment). I join this forum to learn more about plants and how they work because I'm working an automated hydroponic grow box which would help me and people like me to grow plants indoor more easily. Then, I'd love to receive your advice on how to take care some plants, as well as how to improve my grow box.image

So here is the thing: Agrome is a grow box which help to grow exotic, non-native plants and to increase their yield by remotely creating a controllable environment with a smartphone, or tablet, computer, or whatever connected to internet image). It is equipped with:

  • LEDs of various (very precise) light frequencies that plants need most: Blue (470nm), Royal Blue (447.5 nm), Red (627nm), Deep Red (655nm) and others. You can manage the proportion of each type of light to optimize the yield of each state of growth: from seedling to flowering.
  • a heater : to bring heat to some plants that need it
  • a hydroponic system with direct irrigation towards the roots.
  • various compartments for nutrients to inject the right nutrient at the right state of growing.
  • ventilation
  • various types of sensors which measure air and water’s temperature, humidity, plants’ size and height, water’s pH.
  • cameras which transfers real time images, and analyses photosynthesis of plant at the same time.
  • a mini-computer (raspberry pi), to which sensors and cameras are linked, commands the activities of the box.


I've tested it on basil and mint and it works great :

https://farm2.staticflickr.com/1595/24358191281_744030b38a.jpg

 




Because the growbox is well insulated, and easily controlled; you can create a special environment with specific temperature, lights and nutrients that fit your plant. And this can be done remotely through an online application. The computer will keep track of all the possible environmental changes and adjust the growbox to maintain the environment that you created. At the end of the day, you can see what happened to your plant and how it is performing.

The box’s growing surface measures L40xW40cm with 25cm, 40cm, and 1m+ in height, very modular.

https://farm2.staticflickr.com/1462/23982733309_d903c81e3d.jpg

 



https://farm2.staticflickr.com/1543/24350512125_3c81b3f4ac.jpg

 




What do you feel about it? What kind of plants would you grow in it?

What would you suggest to improve it?

How much would you pay for it if you're interested in buying one?

Thanks and looking forward to hear from you!

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  • Perhaps Nasa would have some answers for you as they grow plants in a completely unnatural environment. Me, I just stick plants in a pot or in my garden and sometimes throw on a bit of manure. I have no idea which coloured light they need when, as long as they get enough altogether, or which specific nutrients I should administer at which stage of growth, beyond nitrogen for leaves and tomato feed for flowers and fruit. I suspect most gardeners are similar and so the ultra sensitive control system would be an utter waste of money for us as we would not be able to benefit from it. Not as much fun as gardening either. Sorryimageimage

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 54,607

    The only people I can think of who would be interested in this technology would be the criminals who grow industrial quantities of cannabis, usually exploiting illegal Vietnamese immigrants to tend them.  They are usually discovered because of the 'gardeners' visiting the 'unoccupied' properties to feed and water the plants.

    Anyone who is actually interested in growing plants will acquire 'green fingers' by growing plants and observing the results of their actions.  No one is born with green fingers - you earn them image

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







  • treehugger80treehugger80 Posts: 1,828

    looks way too technical for me, and probably over the head of any beginner gardener, start with a sunny windowsill and work up from there!

  • Thanks for the feedback!

    So you think that it's too complicated and unnecessary to grow plants with such a system then?

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 54,607
    vivi1316 wrote (see)

    Thanks for the feedback!

    So you think that it's too complicated and unnecessary to grow plants with such a system then?

    I think so - for the individual at least. 

    It may be helpful for someone growing on an industrial scale who isn't really interested in plants - but for me the pleasure I get from watching the plants, and noticing things and adjusting the way I care for them is what makes me happy.  It's a bit like the relationship you have with a pet I suppose. 

    It may also work for places like hotels and offices where they need attractive plant displays but no member of staff is interested in caring for them.  But the containers would have to be made entirely of transparent material so that the plants are visible.

     

     

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







  • Thanks for your suggestions, Dovefromabove!

    Do you think that using the unnatural settings of the box to grow plants is a reason for some individuals do not want to use it? 

  • Singing GardenerSinging Gardener EssexPosts: 818

    OH was reading me an article from his technology magazine about something similar to this. It seemed to be being designed for commercial growing in countries where water is in short supply. They appeared to have concluded that they didn't even need a growing medium if the right nutrients etc. were pumped into the air. Plants were suspended with the roots absorbing everything from the air around them.

    It sounds rather too complicated for amateur growing though and I'm afraid I wasn't listening all that carefully....

  • yeah I see. It might sound too technical for you guys I guess. How about saying it this way? 

    This is a grow box that would help you to:

    • Grow plants all year round without depending on outdoor weather or seasons.
    • Grow plants that are incompatible with the local climate: exotic plants, plants which asks for specific weather conditions .
    • Create the optimal environment for the type of plant that you want to grow.
    • Monitor and control your plants remotely via a computer or smartphone. So that you can take care of them when you're on vacations or out of town.

    How do you feel about it?

  • I feel you are in danger of repeating yourself Vivi. image

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