Smart technology for outdoors! Watering, mowing the lawn, grilling or lighting: Do it yourself shows how you can make your garden smart and which networked products you need for it. The garden is a real Eldorado for all kinds of smart home items.
Spring is just around the corner. Now it’s time to make the garden fit for the most beautiful season – but not just with a shovel, broom or rake. Anyone who uses smart garden technology such as robotic mowers, clever sun protection or automatic irrigation systems can make their garden stay very comfortable. Because these devices can be easily controlled using a smartphone app. In addition, the practical helpers can inform you about weather trends and trigger the awning control at the same time. do it yourself shows you the current trends for your garden! We have also put together the most important products for the Smart Garden theme.
Always keep an eye on the weather
Why rely on the predictions on TV, Internet or radio? With your own weather station, you know exactly how the weather will be for you. Cool or hot, dry or wet.
Sun protection and automatic watering
Just stay in the sun chair! As soon as you are too blinded, or your plants threaten to dry up on the windowsill,
let the awning or roller blind lower via the app or automatically. With clever irrigation technology, you no longer need to struggle with a hose or watering can, and you save water.
Expert tip: the complete system
Gardena has launched the “smart system” so that you can enjoy full comfort in your garden. The clever complete system takes care of watering and lawn care fully automatically. Everything is controlled via an app on the smartphone or tablet. You can find out the details on using and installing the Gardena smart system from specialist retailers.
Smart Garden: How to control your garden
Smart garden technology doesn’t have to be complicated. Do it yourself shows you which products can do what and which basic functions you can expect.
- Control light in the garden
- What for? Intelligent lighting has long been an integral part of the smart home segment. Now it is also penetrating the smart garden. So that you don’t have to switch off all the lamps in the outdoor lighting individually before going to bed, the light can be controlled centrally thanks to integrated radio-controlled sockets or smartphone app.
- How does it work? The components of lighting systems for the garden are coordinated with one another. It is controlled via an internet browser or app.
- Which functions are offered? Lighting solutions for the garden are mostly open systems and can be coupled with indoor lighting. Examples include “Lightify” from Osram or the outdoor set from “Philips Hue”, which will be launched in 2018. The dimmable mini-spots of the “Lightify” series, which are compatible with the Alexa system, are available from just under 80 euros on Amazon. The weatherproof solar lantern Luci Lux promises up to twelve hours of lighting and is available for around 30 euros.
- What are the alternatives? Switching off all lights in the evening or automatically running night mode using your smartphone – that’s practical. As an alternative, there is the coupling with a timer – or the manual switching off of the lighting unit.
- Tips about the product: You can illuminate paths in your garden sensibly with a motion detector that can be switched on and off via smartphone. It becomes practical if you also connect the motion detector to the electric garage door. Simply switch on the motion detector with your mobile phone when you drive your car in front of the garage.
- Automatic watering
- What for? Smart watering in the garden: irrigate lawns or flower beds precisely and precisely at the right time instead of doing too much of a good thing with a hose and watering can. This is a clever way to save water and free time
- How does it work? The SensoTimer ST6 Duo eco! Ogic from Kärcher irrigates moisture-controlled and needs-based. Its sensors measure the soil moisture and transmit it to the SensoTimer by radio.
- Which functions are offered? Kärcher’s SensoTimer ST 6 DUO eco! Ogic is based on the water requirements of the plants. The removable control panel weighs a good 1 kilo and measures 11.9 x 23.4 x 14.8 centimeters. The set contains two wireless sensors (one per water outlet). Price: $ 180.00.
- What are the alternatives? If you want to control or monitor the irrigation of your garden with a sprinkler remotely (via smartphone or tablet PC app), the smart Blossom irrigation control system is available for the equivalent of 120 dollars. Blossom also helps to reduce water consumption, because local weather data is also incorporated into the app’s irrigation plan (irrigation is interrupted when it rains) – which can of course be created according to your own ideas. Gardena also has a comparable product for flexible and automatic watering. For the 2018 gardening season, the manufacturer is launching its “Smart Irrigation Control” system. Price: 200 euros.
- Tips about the product: With the SensoTimer ST 6 DUO eco! Ogic from Kärcher, up to two times can be set for automatic watering per day. The device can also be used to delay watering by 1 to 7 days. This means that manual watering is still possible at any time. Programming can also be interrupted for a day at the push of a button.
- Have the lawn mowed
- What for? A robotic lawnmower should mow the lawn automatically, effectively, reliably and without streaking – at least that’s what the manufacturers promise. He also takes care of his batteries himself.
- How does it work? As the name suggests, the robotic lawnmower mows completely automatically. This also applies to charging your battery. The charging station is anchored in the ground with screws and should be protected from rain and sun.
- Which functions are offered? The system status, charge and operating status of the two brand new robotic lawn mowers from different manufacturers can be queried via smartphone app. The smart robots can also be started and controlled from the sofa using an app, the mowing frequency can be adapted to the grass growth and also linked to the smart irrigation system. The robotic lawnmowers are constantly being developed.
- What are the alternatives? The Bosch Indego is already available for around $ 700. In contrast to most robotic lawn mowers, it follows parallel paths and thus automatically mows the lawn. It can be controlled via the app. Current devices like the Gardeno Sileno city should work almost silently and almost without human intervention. It is designed for smaller gardens in urban areas. Price: $ 1,000. Another robot lawn mower that performed well in the do-it-yourself test is the Robolinho from AL-KO, which produces a very fine cut. It is available in various versions starting at $ 1,100. The cheapest alternative: to mow the lawn yourself with a conventional mower.
- Tips on the product: so that the robotic lawnmower knows where to mow, delimit the area in question with a cable. The cable must be laid at least 30 centimeters away from house walls. So that the robotic lawnmower can find its way to the charging station on its own, you also need to lay a “guide cable” that leads directly to the charging station.
- Determine weather data
- What for? Know how the weather will be: If you install a smart weather station in the garden, you will receive the measured values and information about rain or sunshine via WLAN from the base station directly to your smartphone.
- How does it work? The radio combination sensor OC 3 from ELV measures wind speed, wind direction and the amount of precipitation. The measured values are sent wirelessly to the base station and from there to the smartphone via WLAN. Price: around $ 250.
- Which functions are offered? Together with the HomeMatic central unit (from 150 euros) and the OC 3 sensor from ELV, you can easily install a smart weather station for the garden. A wind alarm can be transmitted via the radio roller shutter actuator and the roller shutters can then be lowered. Price: around $ 250.
- What are the alternatives? One for (almost) everything: The DuoFern environmental sensor 9475 from Rademacher is a radio-capable sensor for controlling the building technology using weather data. It measures temperature, rain, wind strength, sun position, sun height and illuminance. It sends the data by radio to registered recipients. For example, the awning can be automatically moved to the sun protection position when the sun is strong from the south, or the blinds can be closed completely automatically when there is strong wind and rain. Price: around $ 250.
- Tips about the product: With Netatmo, the weather station for smartphones and tablets (supports iOS and Android), you can check in no time how cold or warm it is outside, how much precipitation is falling or has fallen (in the picture: the Rain gauge around $ 60). The station (one indoor and one outdoor module) costs $ 169.
- Sun protection
- What for? Let sun and shade in the garden: If the sun is too hot, an awning or roller blind can help. In the smart garden, they can be conveniently controlled via the app on the smartphone or tablet or with the remote control.
- How does it work? You can extend the sun protection conveniently and fully automatically with the roller shutter control. This works even with existing motors in the roller blind etc. The whole thing can then be controlled via the app. Control the blinds, awnings and roller blinds conveniently using the app or remote control! You can also set automatic times when the sun protection is activated. There are also retrofit systems for existing sun protection.
- Which functions are offered? Automatic sun protection elements are compatible with many smart home systems. There are brightness sensors, for example, from the manufacturer Somfy (“Smart Home Basic Kit Sun” for 233 dollars), which can be coupled with tubular motors and automatically open and close the roller shutters. There are comparable elements (controls, transmitters and drives) from Schellenberg, for example.
- What are the alternatives? With the radio shutter actuator from ELV (works in the Homematic Smart Home system), a complete new installation can be avoided. Because it makes simple roller blinds smart: The actuator can be combined with an existing control. Only the existing flush-mounted box needs to be replaced. The actuator is then registered at the HomeMatic central unit (price: from 150 dollars). The roller blind can be controlled directly from via smartphone or tablet and the corresponding app. Price: from $ 45.
Grilling by app
- What for? Smart grilling fun via app: A suitably prepared grill provides its own WiFi network. The grill temperature can then be conveniently set using a smartphone and tablet app.
- How does it work? The Davy Crockett Pellet Grill with WiFi offers temperature sensors that monitor the grill temperature. If this falls below a desired value, the Crockett automatically pours new wood pellets into the combustion chamber.
- Which functions are offered? A piercing thermometer also monitors the core temperature of the grilled food. Push messages to the smartphone inform, for example, when the meat has reached a perfect degree of cooking. The app is available free of charge for iOS and Android. Price: around $ 750.
- What are the alternatives? The Activegrill from the Austrian IT company Infotronik Touchscreen Systems is the first charcoal grill on the market that can be controlled completely digitally. It’s that simple: load the wood, put in coal, switch it on: after only 15 minutes the Activegrill reaches a temperature of 300 degrees Celsius – an integrated fan ensures that the temperature inside the grill is automatically maintained. The grill can be controlled via smartphone. The catch is the proud price of $ 5,800!
- Tips about the product: All barbecues agree on the core temperature! Because it decides how cooked the meat is. The Oregon Scientific Bluetooth barbecue thermometer should reliably measure the temperature and inform the smartphone or tablet via Bluetooth radio as soon as the desired cooking state is reached (from 60 dollars).