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Perfect plants are just an Edyn garden sensor away

This solar-powered garden sensor wants you to have a smart garden.


Selena Larson


Posted on Jan 6, 2015   Updated on May 29, 2021, 8:11 pm CDT

One day soon, our homes and offices will all be connected by hardware and mobile applications. Even the most natural, green places will be unable to avoid being hooked up to the Internet—Edyn is proof positive.

Edyn is a solar-powered, garden-monitoring system that helps you grow the perfect plants. The two-part system includes a garden sensor and a water valve that tracks the nutrients and moisture in the soil and water when necessary. The devices connect to the cloud and an app through your home Wi-Fi network and data captured every minute will let you know whether your plants are getting enough nourishment.

A stainless steel rod extends from the solar-paneled top of the garden sensor, and plunges into the ground. At its tip, two steel rings measure the conductivity of the soil—the app charts how well electrons move through the soil and creates a curve that lets Edyn figure out the soil moisture and nutrition levels in a 250-square-foot area. Rechargeable batteries that can charge to full capacity in just three hours of direct sunlight can last weeks without sunshine, making Edyn work in even the wettest climates.

Selena Larson

The Edyn smartphone application alerts you when your plants need to be watered with a tap of the app, or if the rain has them covered. When setting up the system, the app asks which plants live in the garden, and Edyn will provide suggestions and alerts on how best to take care of them. For instance, it knows that lettuce will need more water than a cactus, or when a tomato plant is expected to sprout.

“We’re always checking the weather forecast when making the smart watering schedule, so we’ll always adapt to that,” Paul Cowgill, vice president of software engineering at Edyn, told the Daily Dot at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas on Saturday. “Based on our testing, any metropolis should work fine.”

Seattle included.

The application’s homescreen displays the amount of light, humidity, and nutrition each plant in your garden receives, and the app can track the lifecycle of plants. The graphs will also tell you if your plant is getting too much or too little water or sunshine. Eventually, Edyn will also implement social features, allowing you to share your plant data with friends and follow famous gardeners.

Edyn began as a Kickstarter project that raised almost $400,000, and is now available for purchase online. The Oakland, Calif.-based company will also begin selling its wares in Home Depot in the coming months, $99 for sensor, $59 for the valve.

The device works in any type of soil, from moist mulch to dry desert sand. The only thing it shouldn’t go in?

“It can’t be placed in lava,” Cowgill said.

Photo by Selena Larson

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*First Published: Jan 6, 2015, 10:25 pm CST