A beginner’s guide to using apps and gadgets to grow healthier plants

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Some people seems to have a “green thumb“-a natural affinity with houseplants that let them grow anywhere, anywhere. I’m not one of those people. The only way I can cultivate anything is by ignoring my natural instinct, break things down logically and follow a tight schedule. Men my planter live much longer thanks to technology it helps take the guesswork out of how much lightingnutrients and water my plants need.

Download light meter apps

Different types of houseplants thrive under different light levels, but if you are not sure whether your houseplant is receiving “light, indirect” lighting or “medium” lighting, a light meter will help. These gadgets tell you exactly how many footlights or lux your plant receives, and databases like this one can tell you how much they need. You could pay around $ 1,500 for a very accurate spectrophotometer or buy one on Amazon for ten dollarsbut for most of us, the best solution is to download one of many free light meter apps for your phone. Different apps have different features, so read up a bitor just give a bunch of the free ones a try.

Buy a cheap odometer

In the caveman era, people controlled the humidity of houseplant soil by sticking in it and saying, “yop, ieit’s damp, ”but it does not tell you what is happening below the surface in the all-important root ball, and it provides no information about your soil’s PH balance that you need to know to fertilize properly. For that you need a meter. There are a ton of them out there, though this Sonkir set is a good foundation that measures moisture and PH, includes a light meter, and gets excellent reviews online. And It sold for less than $ 25.

Use an automatic irrigation system

If you regularly over- or under-water your plantsYou should think of an automatic irrigation system to remove your fallible human hand from yours home horticulture. There are all kinds of automatic home irrigation solutions and many are surprisingly cheap. This USB or battery powered system from sPlant lets you set different irrigation plans for up to 10 houseplants, from a small sip to your ponytail, to full wet soil to your always thirsty Cyperus.

Buy an indoor weather monitor

So you have the earth PH, humidity, and light levels perfectly named, but you agree humidity and temperature? To be sure, you need a hygrometer and a thermometer (or a combination thereof) to check. I suggest you choose one of these Fischer Scientific — they are expensive, but can provide accurate enough readings for scientifically clean rooms and laboratories. Or you could go with this “home weather station” that connects with your phone and also measures the air quality and ambient sound if someone shouts at your plants instead of speaking to them in a soothing tone as they should. If you pair one of these with a humidifier or dehumidifier, you can ensure optimal indoor atmospheric moisture for your houseplants.

Use growth light if you want

The time has come to free our houseplants from the whimsical whims of the oppressive sun! Instead of relying on a distant sphere of fire, you can supply your plants with all their light, making you a god to them. There is plenty of information and debate online about the relative benefits of fluorescent vs. LED vs. natural light, warm vs. cool light and more, then I do not want to wade into that stormy sea, but here is one good, basic overview.

Invest in a hydroponic cultivation system

If you want to grow your plants hydroponically but have absolutely no idea what you are doing, you can buy whole hydroponic growth systems online for beautiful reasonable prices. This Vivosun growing tente.g, costs only $ 339 and provides adjustable LED lighting, a fan system, an air filtration system and more, all in a light-tight mylar tent. If you want a perfectly controlled, sealed environment so your plants can be their best selves, this is a good one possibility. (You can also use it to grow weeds, I think.)

Use time-lapse cameras to track growth

Your plant is not only found in space; it is found in time also, man. And nothing monitors your plant’s development from a hopeful seedling to a brown, underwater skull like a time-lapse camera. While your phone may provide time-lapse photography, this is not a good solution as you will need to check Twitter. Instead, consider a dedicated time-lapse camera to point at your plants. You can spend thousands on a camera system or buy something that is perfectly usable for less than 50 bucks. This comparison article from bestreviews.com is a place to start researching.

Use an electric predator to scare away pests

Motion-sensing electric owls are designed to prevent pests from messing with the plants in your garden, but there is no law that says you can not also set one up to protect your houseplants. This electric predator from Walmart looks like a big horned owl, and it will turn against any movement it detects and emit a surprising sound. You need one fake coyote and a fake goose, also. How else can you be of course?