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Sensor Networks

Terry personally programs his computerized irrigation controller, which is linked to irrigation solenoid stations throughout his nursery.

Since he grows in a soilless substrate, Terry has to be especially careful about leaching water and nutrients from the bottom of the container - and so he typically irrigates a single block at least three times a day, for short (3-6 minute) cycles, depending on the container size and plant species.

As you can imagine, this task is enough to give anyone a headache! So having reliable soil mositure sensors in various "indicator" species provides Terry with the knowledge that he either is maintaining adequate moisture in the root zone, or whether the tree is drying out over time.

Perhaps most importantly, knowing that he doesn't have to irrigate allows him to skip blocks, saving time and money. When the weather does get really hot and dry, this also allows Terry to make the best use of his water resources, maintaining optimal growth of his nursery trees.