Chapter 10

Building an Automated Garden

In This Chapter

arrow Building a moisture sensor probe

arrow Using power transistors

arrow Actuating a solenoid valve

arrow Building an irrigation system

How many plants do you have to kill before you decide you need a helping hand? I went through three or four before guilt took over. When my wife’s new miniature olive tree bit the dust, my creative tinkering hat went on. An Arduino is perfect for patiently — really patiently — waiting for something to happen and then responding quickly and reliably.

I whipped up this system to prevent more plants from going to the great compost heap in the sky. Even though my wife and I see the tree every day, we sometimes forget to water it. But my trusty Arduino is keeping the new olive tree happy.

Having your Arduino stand in for you as a plant minder can also be handy if you are going on an extended trip and won’t be around to make sure your plants don’t get too parched.

tip.eps You can download schematics and full-color parts placement ...

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