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Thread: Grow box with monitoring and remote control system

  1. #1
    vivi1316's Avatar
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    Lightbulb Grow box with monitoring and remote control system

    Hi everyone,

    My friends and I are working on a grow box that you can command remotely with an app. Originally, we created the box for all type of plants. We are now wondering if we go further with special plants. As you guys are expert in carnivorous plants, we’d love to hear your precious opinions on our work so that we can improve it.


    So here is the thing:
    Agrome is a grow box which help to grow exotic, non-native plants and to increase their yield by remotely creating a controllable environment with a smartphone, or tablet, computer, or whatever connected to internet ). It is equipped with:
    • LEDs of various (very precise) light frequencies that plants need most: Blue (470nm), Royal Blue (447.5 nm), Red (627nm), Deep Red (655nm) and others. You can manage the proportion of each type of light to optimize the yield of each state of growth: from seedling to flowering.
    • a heater : to bring heat to some type of plants
    • a hydroponic system with direct irrigation towards the roots.
    • various compartments for nutrients to inject the right nutrient at the right state of growing.
    • ventilation
    • various types of sensors which measure air and water’s temperature, humidity, plants’ size and height, water’s pH.
    • cameras which transfers real time images, and analyses photosynthesis of plant at the same time.
    • a mini-computer (raspberry pi), to which sensors and cameras are linked, commands the activities of the box.


    We have tested it on basil and mint and it works great :



    Because the growbox is well insulated, and easily controlled; you can create a special environment with specific temperature, lights and nutrients that fit your plant. And this can be done remotely through an online application. The computer will keep track of all the possible environmental changes and adjust the growbox to maintain the environment that you created. At the end of the day, you can see what happened to your plant and how it is performing.

    The box’s growing surface measures L40xW40cm with 25cm, 40cm, and 1m+ in height, perfectly modular.




    What do you feel about it? What kind of carnivorous plants we can grow in there?

    What would you suggest to improve it?

    How much would you pay for it if you're interested in buying one?

    Thanks and looking forward to hearing from you guys!
    Last edited by vivi1316; 01-24-2016 at 10:49 PM.

  2. #2
    Benurmanii's Avatar
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    What I'd like to see is some way to control the temps at various points during the day, specifically cooling the temps significantly at night. I'm sure plenty of Nepenthes growers would like a tall box to grow ultra-highland Nepenthes in. That being said, a way to control humidity would be nice too, but I figure it wouldn't be too difficult to modify the box to be hooked up to your already existing misting system and hygrostat.

    For carnivorous plant growers, I've noticed cooling is a much bigger issue than heating (which I suppose is obvious, as cooling requires more energy, and can often mean less humidity). If you could find a way to get the box to be cold and humid, then many would finally be able to grow plants that need cool temps yet are extremely picky about exactly how cold and when (such as D. glanduligera and D. arcturi).

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    Lotsa blue bluemax's Avatar
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    Very impressive! I agree with Benurmanii that cooling is likely to be a useful function in such a growth chamber. If you could make it possible for someone to grow some of the rare and expensive highland Nepenthes that would seem to be a market for those who have the price but not the conditions. I gather you are providing strong enough LEDs to match the intensity of full sun? It might be useful to consider CO2 injection as this would add a dimension of growth ability that might surpass natural conditions. 'Just my two cents worth. Anyway - congratulations on what you have accomplished!
    - Mark

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    nimbulan's Avatar
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    I'd been thinking about trying a system like this just for automatic watering. A fully climate-controlled environment would be fantastic. I'm not sure how many carnivorous plants could be grown hydroponically though. Some larger sizes (horizontally and vertically) would be useful, especially with Nepenthes since some plants can be fairly large.

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    BS Bulldozer SubRosa's Avatar
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    While your mix of LEDs might maximize growth, I would suggest adding enough white LEDs to give a somewhat natural appearance to the plants. It might not matter for edibles, but people grow ornamental plants (including CP's) largely for appearance, and the appearance of plants under only red and blue is bizarre.
    Judge not lest ye be judged creates a cesspool. Judge others and prepare to be judged by them.
    Just know when to keep the verdict to yourself.

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    nimbulan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SubRosa View Post
    While your mix of LEDs might maximize growth, I would suggest adding enough white LEDs to give a somewhat natural appearance to the plants. It might not matter for edibles, but people grow ornamental plants (including CP's) largely for appearance, and the appearance of plants under only red and blue is bizarre.
    I would second this as well. Some people don't mind it, but a lot of us like to look at our plants. In addition, I've been told it's harder to inspect the health of CPs under red/blue lighting.

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    Av8tor1's Avatar
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    Cooling, not heating is usually the difficult part where Cp's are concerned...
    Also, avoid technology for the sake of technology... critical system redundancy that doesn't depend on remote user intervention is simpler and more reliable long term.

    and +1 on white LED use.

    Just my 2 cents

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    vivi1316's Avatar
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    Wow that's very interesting to hear! Thank you all!

    Actually we can program the box to have day and night time (start and stop the lighting at a certain time, with full or dim lighting to imitate the sun).

    For the white LED, we've thought about putting them for sure. The white light could be activated when you open the box to look at it, or when you watch it/take a picture through the app. You should be able to put the white light manually whenever you want to

    We haven't thought about a cooling system yet. That's would be expensive to bring to the box as a feature. But if someone is ready to pay for it, why not?
    The humidity sensors should work as a hygrostat. Indeed a misting system would be necessary. :thumpup:

    As almost everyone has a computer and/or a smartphone, we would use that screen to replace traditional attached-to-the-box LCD screen to control the box In addition, the remote control allows people to take care of there plants when they are on vacations, or out of town. And users can profit upgrades to the latest technology by using an online app. Do you really prefer that the control screen is on the box?

    What would be the ideal size for you if you had a box like this at your home?
    I'd love to hear your precious opinions on my project Grow box with monitoring and remote control system

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