In a bid to make it easier for gardeners to grow their own food sustainably and to optimize their garden yields, a startup has developed a wireless probe for monitoring the conditions in the soil.
Soil IQ’s solar-powered probe can take instant measurements of soil pH, moisture, temperature, soil nutrient content, and more, and stream it wirelessly to the cloud, enabling users to “tune in” to their garden’s conditions via a smartphone app.
“Founded by a Princeton grad and soil scientist who has worked with hundreds of Kenyan farmers to increase crop yields, Soil IQ’s mission is to help people to grow food more sustainably.” – TechCrunch
Not only can the probe inform the users of current conditions, but it can also log the data over long periods and provide analytics that can help gardeners and small farmers optimize their watering, fertilizing, and selection of seeds. The Soil IQ probe, which isn’t just for soil-based gardens, but will also be able to monitor hydroponics systems, can send users alerts via Twitter or SMS when their crops are in need of water or nutrients.
“Our proprietary platform and algorithm makes crop-specific recommendations to farmers and gardeners to improve yield and reduce waste. We are building a massive dataset of the optimal conditions (soil, temperature, rainfall etc) to grow the world’s favorite crops. Soil IQ sensors integrate with automated watering and fertilization systems to fully automate food production.” – Soil IQ
According to the company’s profile on Angel List, Soil IQ will also enable the buying, selling, or trading of the user’s crops (as well as sharing their data if they wish) with others.
Soil IQ has not launched yet, but is expected to retail for about $50, and those interested in the technology can sign up on their website to be notified about updates to the project.
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