Top 5 Apps for Gardening and Hydroponics
We love our gardens, but also have a lot of other things going on and don’t always have time to meticulously tend them. No problem. Shannon McKee has sussed out some growing technology that can help you run your garden like a pro.
Technology has changed the way we do everything today. Why not have it change the way that we garden? There are some great applications for hydroponics and gardening that can take a lot of the hassle out of your favorite hobby.
These different applications can do everything from help diagnose what could be wrong with your crops to reminding you to add nutrients to your hydroponic system. Here’s a list of the top five growing-related apps that you should consider adding to your digital toolbox.
The name Perfect Hydroponics promises something big, and it delivers. If you aren’t dedicated to documenting information, this app is a godsend. Think of this app as your detailed grower’s notebook that allows for a wide range of information.
From documenting when a foliar spray is applied to recording data on your reservoir, all your information is available at the touch of a finger.
With this app, you can have information stored for six different gardens simultaneously. This technology is great if you like to try different experiments to see what provides better results, as you’ll be able to track the differences and results right in the app easily.
Perfect Hydroponics is only available on iTunes for $1.99. There are some similar apps available on Play Store for Android users, such as MyGarden.org, a free app.
GroLog is an application that’s similar in purpose to Perfect Hydroponics in that it acts as a log for your garden. With GroLog, you’re able to monitor the information that you want for several different garden systems. You can take note of things like room conditions, nutrient solutions, your lighting settings, and even take photos and notes to track your system’s progress.
One of the really cool things this app offers is the ability to set up a schedule for your garden where you can receive reminders for things that you need to do when you’ve scheduled them. You won't forget to water, fertilize, or any other task thanks to these reminders. This app is available on both iTunes and the Play Store for free.
MQ Greenthumb takes your iPhone or iPad and turns it into a light meter to help you determine if your plants are getting the perfect level of light they need to thrive. It also offers some great growing tips, resources, and information on common houseplants.
This app is currently only available for users that have Apple products and can be purchased from iTunes for $1.99. Android users can find some apps through the Play Store that offer to turn their phone into a light meter.
The Plant Doctor
One of the most frustrating things about gardening is dealing with plant health issues. Maybe there is a pest attacking the plant. Maybe there’s a disease ravaging your plants. Maybe the room your plant is in is too dark. It can sometimes be hard to tell what the problem is. That’s where The Plant Doctor application comes in.
As you answer a number of question prompts, the app helps pinpoint what’s going wrong in your garden. Once you have some answers, you’ll be able to devise a plan of action to combat whatever is diagnosed, thanks to the app’s recommendations on topics like water, heat, fertilizer, light, and humidity. Also check out the Fertilizer Calculator from the same publishers.
This is another iTunes app for Apple products and is available for $2.99. There are a number of applications on the Play Store for Android users that offer a similar service.
When to Plant
When to Plant is wonderful for outdoor growers, and could be useful for indoor growers as well. It offers a huge amount of information to help tailor make your planting plans for a wide variety of crops. Just enter in your zip code to find out the average frost dates for your specific area and cross-reference with the USDA Hardiness Zones.
You’ll also get information on the plants themselves, such as what soil types are best, sowing instructions, and harvesting. This iTunes only app is $1.99. There are some garden manager apps that are somewhat similar available on the Play Store.
Get Grow Tips at Your Fingertips with the Maximum Yield Modern Gardening app, available on Google Play and iTunes.
For 20 years, Maximum Yield magazine has been the go-to source for information on controlled-environment gardening for modern growers around the world. Its new app gives readers instant access to the latest issues, product reviews, and article postings.
Through the app, have your gardening questions answered, and read timeless articles on everything from grow lights, nutrients, CO2 enrichment, greenhouses, hydroponics, and more!
A Look Into the Future of Gardening Technology
Not strictly just an app, SmartBee Controllers is a grow system that combines an app with sensors that you can use for indoor and outdoor gardening. This system is completely modular, so you only need to purchase the sensors you’re using. Some of the functions of your grow system that you can use SmartBee for includes timers, temperature, CO2 levels, humidity, irrigation systems, and lighting.
This system allows you to customize and automate your grow system. Those interested in these systems can check out their website where they have a handy store locator to see if any local hydroponic shops are selling these items or can purchase them online. This kind of tech is sure to grow as it becomes more widely available.
These applications are exactly what you’ve been missing for your hydroponic systems or gardens. Never forget when to water. Know exactly when you should plant in your area. Identify any plant diseases that may have struck your crops. These apps will change the way you garden.
Written by Shannon McKee | Freelance Writer, Gardener
Shannon McKee lives in Ohio and has been a freelance writer for several years now, including on her blog, whyiwah.blogspot.com. Nicknamed by loved ones a garden hoarder over the past few years, she grows a wide variety of plants in her urban garden.