Autonomous Plant Kit

Use a Raspberry Pi to make your Plant Kit fully autonomous!

Parts

Before getting started, make sure you have the following parts.

Any Raspberry Pi

Phidgets Plant Kit

Graphic LCD Phidget (Optional)

Setup

Step 1

Simply connect your Plant Kit to your Raspberry Pi.

If you haven't set up your Raspberry Pi with Phidgets yet, visit the Getting Started Kit tutorial.

Transfer Code

Transfer the code from your Plant Kit Project to your Raspberry Pi.

Start Program Automatically

Use cron and schedule your program to run automatically when the Raspberry Pi boots.

For more information on cron and running on boot, visit the Start Automatically project.

After saving your crontab file, you can unplug your Raspberry Pi from any monitors/keyboards, and it will keep your plant watered and healthy with no input!

Add Output (Optional)

Your program is now running autonomously on the Raspberry Pi, but what if you want to know what is happening? One option is to add the Graphic LCD Phidget and output some useful information to users!

Setup

Step 1

Add the Graphic LCD Phidget to any open port on your VINT Hub.

Write Code (Python)

Below is an example program for Python that displays the current light level and soil level as well as a bitmap of a plant.

If you are not familiar with the Graphic LCD, view the Device Tutorial for more information.

  
#Add Phidget library
from Phidget22.Phidget import *
from Phidget22.Devices.DigitalOutput import *
from Phidget22.Devices.VoltageRatioInput import *
from Phidget22.Devices.LightSensor import *
from Phidget22.Devices.LCD import *
#Required for sleep statement
import time


#Define bitmap
plant = [
0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 
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0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 
0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 
0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 
0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 
0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0, 0
]

#Create Object
soil = VoltageRatioInput()
pump = DigitalOutput()
light = LightSensor()
lcd = LCD()


#Address
pump.setHubPort(1)
pump.setIsHubPortDevice(True)

#Open
pump.openWaitForAttachment(1000)
soil.openWaitForAttachment(1000)
light.openWaitForAttachment(1000)
lcd.openWaitForAttachment(1000)

#Use your Phidgets
#Configure LCD
lcd.setBacklight(0.25)
lcd.writeBitmap(64, 0, 64, 64, plant)

while(True):
    lightString = "Light: " + str(light.getIlluminance()) + "lx"
    soilString = "Soil: " + str(soil.getVoltageRatio())
    lcd.writeText(LCDFont.FONT_5x8, 0, 22, lightString)
    lcd.writeText(LCDFont.FONT_5x8, 0, 32, soilString)
    lcd.flush()
    time.sleep(1.0)
  

Practice

  1. Try running your program for an extended period of time. What adjustments are needed?
  2. Try to display the date and time on the Graphic LCD.
  3. Use the red button from your Getting Started Kit as a pump override. When the button is pressed, your pump should run and water the plant.

Troubleshoot
  1. Make sure everything is plugged in properly to your computer
  2. Stop running other programs that are using your Phidgets before running a program.

If these do not solve your issue visit the Advanced Troubleshooting Page.

What are Phidgets?

Phidgets are programmable, modular USB devices, either sensors or controllers that you can connect together. Simply write code in your favorite language and solve real-world problems.

Learn more

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