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May 14, 2017 AT 6:00 am

Common Garden Develops Open Source Farming Techniques

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Via Make:

Common Garden is a revolution in the food industry, bringing in sensors, data, automation, and artificial intelligence. With a focus on precision, cost-effectiveness, and an open source community, Common Garden is helping farmers sense, encode, and replicate the ideal conditions to grow plants.

After communication with trade growers, Hartnell developed sensors that allowed farmers to control temperature, humidity, carbon dioxide, light, nutrient concentration, and nutrient pH. These various components are not recorded separately, which is already happening in the agricultural field, but rather together, for full programmatic control.

These controlled environments do two things that are essential for creating a smaller environmental impact: remove herbicides and use fewer pesticides. Not only are you creating organic, nutritious food, it is produced in local areas and can be grown year round. Full control systems have always been around, but most of them are expensive and confusing to figure out. By creating an open source tool, Common Garden has removed the concern about cost and simplified the data analysis so that anyone can use their tool.

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