Your guide to the ultimate smart garden
Are you a budding garden enthusiast or a long-time horticulturist? Whatever your level of gardening experience, smart garden products could be the way forward. Whether it's finding out the nutrients in your soil, watering plants while you're away or linking up your entire garden to an app – we've rounded up the best in smart home garden gadgets.
We all live busy lives and whether it's a long work week, a trip away or you just forget – watering your garden sometimes gets missed. Smart sprinklers are the answer.
The Rachio smart sprinkler range helps you save water and monitors the weather so plants aren't over watered. It connects to an app so you can control the sprinkler from your smartphone or tablet, plus they're compatible with your Amazon Echo so you can even ask Alexa to water the plants for you.
Another option for a complete garden irrigation system is the GreenIQ range. These tap into weather reports to work out exactly how much it needs to water your plants. No more wasting water or money.
Plant and weather sensors
We know that temperature, rainfall and sun have huge impacts on your plants – the Netatmo Weather Station sends real time updates to your smartphone and monitors temperature, humidity and pressure.
Netamo don't just do smart weather for the outdoors, they do smart thermostats for inside too – so you can keep your garden and home just right.
For a more in-depth look at how healthy your plants are, there's the solar-powered soil sensor Edyn. This company launched on Kickstarter as a connected garden start-up but are now stocked worldwide. Edyn measures moisture, pH, temperature, light levels and nutrients – so you'll know your plants are getting exactly what they need.
Imagine if your lawn was mowed without you lifting a finger. Welcome to robotic lawn mowers. None of these are cheap, but if you have a lot of land and some cash to spend, you may want to take a look at Husqvarna's range of Automowers, GPS connected, three feet long robot mowers which can cut an area up to 1.25 acres.
Or there's the Honda Miimo – a futuristic looking little mower that has a maximum mowing time of 40 minutes and is waterproof; so even when it's raining, you can still get a trim-looking lawn!
Not all of us that love gardening have a garden. But not to fret – now you can have a smart herb garden indoors. With Click & Grow, you can grow plants, herbs and vegetables in a special container which would be ideal for the kitchen. The plants practically grow themselves with help from special lights and soil.
Lights and security
Smart lights are one of the easiest ways to start making your home smarter. And now you can illuminate your garden, patio or driveway.
Smart lights are worth considering for your garden – with tons of colours, different fittings, and many special features. The newest lights work with Amazon Echo too. Or if you're after a more secure option, how about installing a smart outdoor security camera? Not only can it distinguish between cars, people and animals and notify you directly on your smartphone, it has an integrated smart floodlight which switches on only when needed.
Solar umbrellas are remotely controlled and charged by the panels on the top. All parasols work slightly differently – some track the sun and move to make sure you stay in the shade all day without having to move your seat.
This one called the Sunflower from American company Shadecraft is more than a parasol. It plays music, has ambient lighting for when the sun goes down and even has a camera. Who knew you could get all that from an umbrella?
SmartPlant is an app that connects you with plant experts at the click of button. It geo-maps to your location to take into consideration climate and soil type. You take a photo of your plant and the experts will get back to you within 24 hours with what's wrong. It also works with Amazon Echo so you can ask Alexa what your plants need that day.
Now you have your garden in order it's time to make your home more energy efficient. Whether you want tips on how to lower your heating bills or you need a bit of guidance on energy-efficient appliances. We’re here to help
Is your home smart?
Now you're one step closer to a smart garden – have you thought about inside your home? Want more information on what tech is available to turn your house smart? Take a look at our smart home guide.