OK, this isn’t a normal Catalina post about programming and how to integrate things. This is one of our side projects in gardening. One of the things that we are very passionate about is local farming and trying to figure out how to create economical farming that produces high nutritional value food, reduce water usage (we are in Southern California), and get food to people who need it.
I used Sketchup to design a simple rain gutter garden (Inspired by Larry Hall and the great folks at the Rain Gutter Grow System Page on Facebook Link to Group Page)
If you want the file I did to create this model, you can download it here: Link for Sketchup file for rain gutter garden
If you don’t know what Sketchup is, you should. It is a great 3D tool that helps you design and explain ideas and designs to others with a simple to use interface. You can see more here Sketchup Website.
Here is the actual system in action:
I finally put the sensor platform out in the garden. I am streaming it currently on io.adafruit here: https://io.adafruit.com/bwharton/garden
NOTE: I will be moving this stream next week to Azure. but for now, I am using MQTT to send data to adafruit’s solution.
You can see the box that I got. It is a bit overkill. I also got a “power stake” so that I can easily run power to both a pump and the sensor platform. The box is very very big. I imagine that I will get a smaller one for future versions that I will use in marine environments. Continue reading “PH/Temp meter now in the garden”
We did a much needed upgrade to our hydroponics tower systems. We replaced the rain gutter (used as a way to catch and return water to the reservoir) with a 8′ long and 5″x 5″ square PVC fence post. This new setup is much sturdier and holds the towers exactly the way we want them (towers wont swing or turn like they did in the flimsy rain gutter).
One of our tower structures is 6′ long. So, we cut the fence post to fit at 6′. We wanted to fit 7 towers in this space, so we cut 7 evenly spaced 4.125″ square holes on one side of the post. Applied caulk to the end-caps and placed one on each end. Then on the “bottom” of the post, drilled a 1/2″ hole to caulk a drain pipe to dangle into the reservoir for drainage.
Now that we have this tower structure done, next step is to do our larger tower structure.
Below are some simple plans on how we build our tower structures for our back-yard hydroponics. We have 2 of these. This is the smaller one.
- The structure is constructed of 2×4 lumber
- It uses a 6′ fence post for hanging the towers from
- We also are using a plastic tub (purchased from Target) for the water reservoir
- The towers drain into a vinyl rain gutter which has a downspout in the middle, over the reservoir
- We are using 2” flexible tubing that carries the water pushed from the pump, up the structure and is then zip-tied under the length of the 6’ fence post. Note, you will need to make sure that the end (not attached to the pump) is crimped closed Link to tubing on Amazon
- Use an ice pick to poke a hole in the ½” tubing to where you want your ¼” tube to drip down into your towers