Not all geeks sit behind a computer, there are more than a few gardeners who love a great garden gadget and some of the new, trendy items that have come out recently really are worth the money, making burdensome tasks easier, adding some fun or helping your garden to thrive.
1. ColdSnap! Frost Alarm
With fall and winter just around the corner, you won’t want to get caught off guard by a sudden drop in temperature, especially if you’re in an area of the country subject to extremes. This gardening app really is a must have, as it will notify you when there’s a danger of low temperatures, outside the average range, to give you time to cover up and protect those precious plants, and take other measures to keep them safe from the cold. The app can monitor up to four locations and includes global forecast data too. The app doesn’t just help users prepare for the cold, it also signals you with high extremes as well and can be customized so that you can choose where to source weather data from.
2. Brinno GardenWatchCam
You can have so much fun with this gadget, and learn a lot in the process, literally watching your garden grow, or discovering just which creatures are causing problems with your plants or flowers. The Brinno GardenWatchCam is a 1.3-megapixel time-lapse digital camera that you can set to capture images at intervals from one minute to every 24 hours. The lens adjusts from 20 inches for close ups, so you can shoot that flower as it blooms, to infinity. It runs off of four AA batteries, which are included, so you don’t have to worry about a power source. Just place it in your garden and the watch your garden grow.
3. Little Burro Wheel Barrow Organizer
A wheelbarrow is a must for any gardener, as an indispensable tool that can haul everything from organic matter to plants, fertilizer and more. The problem comes when everything gets all piled up together in the middle. How many times have you moved a bag of topsoil and some flowers, only to have the bag tip over and crush your beautiful little plants? Now, there’s no reason for that to ever happen again. It can carry two long handled tools and also has compartments for smaller tools like a 5-pound bucket and plants, along with a covered compartment for your cell phone, keys or wallet so you don’t have to worry about losing them, or ending up with a water-damaged device. It will also cut down the number of trips you have to make to your garden shed or garage, making life a bit easier. And, though it’s lightweight, it will hold up to 80 pounds.
4. Parrot Flower Power Plant Monitor
If you have trouble keeping your plants alive and want to be totally tuned in to what they need for the best chance at survival, investing in the Parrot Flower Power is well worth the cost. This potential life saver has a wireless sensor that monitors a plant’s moisture, temperature, light, and fertilizer levels, and then relays that information to your smartphone or other devices via Bluetooth technology. It will automatically warn you if you have soil nutrition or light problems and automatically irrigate various plant species. It monitors and waters a single plant, making it ideal for a mini-indoor garden. The app also offers some fun gardening and botanical facts too.
5. Fertilizer Calculator
Science geeks will love this one, and it will only set you back $2.99 at the iTunes store. Compatible with iOS, the app will help you to become more precise when it comes to calculations like how many square feet a bag of fertilizer will cover in your garden. You can also find the answer to garden issues like why your plant’s leaves turned yellow, and which nutrients you can use to solve the problem.
6. Pop-Up Plant Covers
These handy plant covers by Gardener’s Supply Company are made with polyethylene fabric and have a mesh top, creating a kind of mini-greenhouse that will help protect your plants against cold temperatures and the wind. The company’s line of plant covers was recently expanded to include the Pop Up Cuke and Squash Accelerator, which is 16″ tall and has a 16″ diameter, enabling plants to grow 25 percent faster. Warm air can escape through the mesh to prevent overheating. The mesh top will also unzip when you want to provide your plant with direct sunlight, or need added ventilation.
7. Green IQ Smart Garden Hub
This one is a bit of a project, but it offers big rewards. The Green IQ Smart Garden Hub is going to save you lots of hard earned cash while helping to save our planet as well. It can control and optimize a home’s entire lighting and irrigation system, evaluating complex real-time weather conditions and forecasts to save tons of water. According to the manufacturer, the system can cut your gardening water bills by 50 percent, which means it should more than pay for itself fairly quickly, depending on how much water you typically use. When you have the ability to control watering, especially in water-starved drought areas where water is scarce, that’s a huge, potential game-changer for your water bill and the environment. You may have noticed your neighbors’ “sophisticated” irrigation systems that water plants on a preprogrammed schedule – the flaws of those supposed high-tech systems are on full display when you see those sprinklers blasting out water on a rainy morning.
8. A Large Burn Cage
Burning leaves or branches in a 55-gallon drum like so many do, or even worse, out in the open, poses a huge hazard. Those flying sparks and burning leaves are dangerous, and can easily be carried off when a sudden gust of wind hits, starting a fire. That’s why you really need a burn cage, and a large one is best, like the BurnCage XL. It’s well worth investing in one due to the potential cost of fire damage a normal drum may cause. It has a perforated stainless steel incinerator that contains burning embers and maximizes airflow for a hotter fire, with burn temperatures reaching as high as 1600 degrees Fahrenheit. The stainless steel won’t rust or corrode, so you don’t have to worry about it becoming an eyesore later, unlike that rusted-out drum, or that burn spot you have by starting fires on the ground. Plus, it’s easy to put together, and easily folds up, so you can store it when it’s not in use.
9. Netatmo Weather Station
It’s important to monitor your garden’s environment whether it’s an indoor or outdoor garden. The Netatmo Weather Station is a personal weather station that stands above the rest, as it allows you to monitor an indoor environment as well as the weather outside. It can provide the local Air Quality Index report in real time as well as measure indoor CO2 concentration and links to your smartphone so that you can keep track and take measures to provide what your plants and garden needs.
10. Hozelock Auto Reel With 131-Foot Hose
What’s more annoying than running out of the hose when you’re out there trying to water your garden? Admittedly, we can think of a few things, but this hose is sure to at least eliminate that problem as it may be the longest garden hose in the world. It has a 131-foot house, which means, no matter what size your garden is, it is likely the hose will FINALLY cover it all. Really, if your garden is big enough that it calls for a hose of this size, you pretty much have you own small country. It has a 180 pivot and can be removed from the wall bracket and easily stored away for the winter. It’s not cheap, but it is worth it.
11. ScareCrow Animal Repellant
If you live in an area where wildlife roam, or dog owners tend to let their furry friends run around the neighborhood, you need the ScareCrow to prevent the extensive damage that animals can cause. While it’s important to be humane with any type of deterrent device you use, you also need it to be effective. This fantastic gadget first attempts to scare an animal away that it detects using motion and heat sensors, by giving off a burst of loud sound. If the animal doesn’t run off, it will then target it with a three-second burst of water. It’s harmless, but it’s definitely enough to get them out of there. The ScareCrow is a compassionate yet very firm, and effective way to keep everything from squirrels and raccoons to dogs and deer away from your precious plants.
For most gardeners, placing the plants in the ground is the easy part, it’s the maintenance that follows that trips them up. This device can make that a lot easier by taking much of the guesswork out of the equation. The PlantLink monitors your soil to let you know when it needs water. You’ll just enter the type of plants you have into your smartphone, and PlantLink will take care of it by alerting you when those vegetables or flowers are getting thirsty. It can be used on indoor as well as outdoor plants and stays connected to your mobile device at a range of up to 300 feet.
13. Garden Plan Pro iPad
In the planning stages and having difficulty plotting out your plot? This app serves as a visual plan to help you layout out your patches before you even pick up a shovel. It features flexible drawing tools and an extensive database of plants and varieties to make it easy to design the perfect garden layout, rearrange plants and track their progress. It also offers weather station data and provides advice on which plants are best for your region, with information on over 140 various species of vegetables and flowers. As you add crops, it will automatically space them correctly, as well as reveal crop rotation advice for subsequent plans. You can also plan succession sowing month-by-month, in order to get the most from your plot. At $7.99 at the iTunes store,this one is more than worth the cost.
14. Sun Seeker
This app for both Android and iPhone users is ideal for gardeners. If you’re a gardener and a photographer, it’s an absolute must. It uses GPS and magnetometer to locate the correct solar position and path for your current location. You can use the Sun Seeker to determine how much sun exposure there is in various parts of your yard, how many hours of sunshine a particular spot will get from season to season, and much more. Photographers like it for planning those optimal light conditions. The Sun Seeker sells for $14.99 on iTunes and $7.49 on Google Play.
If you’re a gardener who is looking to fine-tune your skills, you need this gadget. The VegieBee imitates the high-frequency vibrations of the wings of a bee during pollination. The vibrations release pollen onto a spoon, and then you can use it to pollinate other plants by hand. It’s said to result in a 30 percent increase in crop yield, making it worth every penny.