Home Improvement

A Helpful Homeowner’s Guide to Smart Garden Features

Helpful Homeowner’s Guide to Smart Garden Features

Working in the garden can be a very fulfilling and relaxing hobby for homeowners.  Some may find enjoyment in growing vegetables and fruit while others delight in creating a pollinator friendly flower garden.  But gardening isn’t always easy.

In fact, many homeowners may find they are overwatering or underwatering their plants, using the wrong type of soil, or simply attempting to grow plants that are not meant to grow in their area.  Luckily, there are several key smart gardening tools to help.  Below are a few smart garden features that can assist you in planting and tending to the garden of your dreams.

Smart Lighting

Nothing sets off an outdoor garden at night more than a few well placed lights.  Luckily, there are a variety of different energy efficient smart outdoor lights to choose from.  The most popular and least expensive smart lights are solar powered lights.  Not only are solar powered outdoor lights an efficient way to illuminate your garden while reducing your electric bill, they can also help you sell your home.

Real estate agents have seen a rise in buyers interested in energy efficient techniques, and that includes landscaping and garden techniques that will save on the rising cost of energy.  Everything from large globe lights to tiny butterfly lights are available to homeowners either online or at a local hardware store.  Solar powered stake lights are easy to press into the ground in a sunny spot where they can absorb sunlight throughout the day.

If you are searching for stronger lights around your garden you can opt for solar powered spotlights.  These are perfect along the side of the house where your landscaping can be displayed at even the darkest time.  In ground solar spotlights are brighter than garden lights but are still easy to place.

The final type of garden lights that require only the sun’s energy are solar powered string lights and solar lanterns.  These are beautiful accent lights that can be placed around a seating area, a garden, or any outdoor feature you would like to illuminate.

For gardeners who are still interested in using electricity to power their outdoor light, an outdoor smart plug may be helpful.  Outdoor smart plugs allow you to remotely control any plug-in light, which means you can easily turn on and off the outdoor light and save on electricity.

Smart Sprinkler

You do what you can to conserve water, like using native drought tolerant plants in your garden, but sometimes even the most water conscious gardener needs to give their plants an extra shower.  For example, when first planting seeds or  Smart irrigation systems make timing the occasional shower easier and prevents excess watering and water waste.  One smart irrigation system called Spruce delivers water to your garden based on your local weather forecast.  It also takes moisture reading from the soil to determine when and if additional water is needed.

The irrigation system can be controlled from your phone or through Amazon Alexa.  Another system that is similar to Spruce is SkyDrop.  This irrigation system has an eight-zone smart irrigation system that syncs with local weather forecasts hourly.  The app can be “taught” during setup about the soil and plant types that you have in each zone as well as the gradient of your land, how much sun and shade each zone gets, and the type of sprinklers being used.  Skydrop limits water usage to when it is needed and keeps your plants thriving in even the most chaotic growing months.

Plant Sensors

Keeping a garden thriving throughout the year takes quite a bit of effort.  With everything from weeding to watering there always seems to be something to do.  It’s no wonder that when life gets busy, your garden is one of the first things around the house to be overlooked.  One way to keep tabs on your garden is a soil meter.  A soil meter generally has one or two probes and can read soil moisture levels and soil pH.

Pairing a soil meter with a smart system will provide you with actionable insights about your plants and your soil health.  For outdoor use, a durable soil meter such as the Netro Whisperer can use the sun’s energy to power its sensor so that it can detect soil moisture levels, ambient temperature, and sunlight exposure.  Since the sensor is Wi-Fi enabled it will connect to your phone and provide plant care notifications and reminders for important gardening tasks.

Smart Lawnmower and Weeder

A gardener’s worst nightmare is weeds.  These nuances are always popping up and no matter how many of them you pull they almost always come back.  Out of frustration, many gardeners turn to weed killing products that can destroy their soil and wreak havoc on their plants.  To clear out weeds you can turn to a solar-powered, weatherproof, weeding robot.  If your plants are tall enough to touch the front of the weed-eating robot’s shell it will turn away from the plant.  However, if the plant is low to the ground the weeder robot will remove weed.

Another aspect of a beautiful garden is a neatly manicured lawn.  The newest smart lawn mowers are robotic, battery powered, and smart.  These mowers will “learn” your lawn and quietly cut it without you having to do anything.  Smart lawn mowers have automatic sensors, adjustable blades, and create very little noise.  You can create a schedule for your smart lawn mower and for some you can activate cutting with Google Assistant and Alexa.

If you are interested in gardening but don’t know where to begin, it is best to start with a low-maintenance, drought tolerant garden that is filled with plants native to your area.  Not only will this garden be easy to maintain and beautiful to look at, it will also increase your curb appeal and increase your home’s marketability in the future when you choose to sell.

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