Introduction: Make an Automatic Plant Light

This light helps your plants grow.

I got the idea from the Garduino, but nothing is taken from it. The schematic and the program are mine.

This plant light gives your plants 4 additional hours of light per day. When it gets dark, it turns on and after 4 hours of darkness, the light turns out. The light restarts when it detects light.

Step 1: Parts

You will need:

1x ATTiny26
1x 5V Wall adapter
3x Red LEDs
1x 30ohm resistor
1x 20 ohm resistor
1x 100kohm resistor
1x 50kohm resistor
1x power socket
1x power plug

wire
plant container

Step 2: The Pot

I used a plastic container and drilled two holes in the side. The wire goes inside those holes.
You should use some imagination and make one with the materials at hand.

Step 3: Electronics

You can't see it on the schematic, but the + of the adapter goes to Vcc and the - to GND.
The plug helps to make the light more mobile.

Step 4: Software

You should already know, how to upload a program. I've uploaded the .c and .hex files.

In the source, the 14400 (in seconds = 4 hours) tells after how many seconds it automatically turns off. You can change this number if you want.

Step 5: Putting It Together

I hot glued the board to the pot. The brown shielding on the top is to prevent the leds from turning themselves back off. That would lead to continuous blinking.

There's foam in the pot to provide a solid base for your plants. Maybe it's a better idea to use soil.

Step 6: Planting

Add some water into the pot. Try finding a plant, that loves a lot of light and put the seeds inside and leave it to grow.

Comments

author
chrwei made it!(author)2009-03-12

add a solar panel and a battery and ditch the wall-wart for extra awesomeness

author
awang8 made it!(author)2009-03-12

But then you'll need sun to shine on it and if the sun's shining on it then it's won't need growth lights... Not awesomeness... More like weirdness...

author
chrwei made it!(author)2009-03-13

uh, sun shines during the day, charges battery, sun goes down, lights run off battery.... never seen a solar landscaping light?

author
awang8 made it!(author)2009-03-17

The main purpose of this is to grow plants indoors. If you're taking it outdoors than it won't need growth lights because it's already exposed to the required spectrum for the required amout of time.

author
poiihy made it!(author)2015-06-01

No, the purpose of this is to give plants 4 extra hours of light.

author
chrwei made it!(author)2009-03-18

solar panels work inside too

author
awang8 made it!(author)2009-03-21

Uhh... No they don't.

author
pullinsb made it!(author)2009-03-26

Uhh... yes they do. Ever used a calculator with a solar panel on it? Most of the time a person will use them at their table/desk and not outside. Solar panels work inside because they turn light into electricity (hence the name photovoltaics). Of course the light would be more intense outside. Why not use this near a window, inside, where it gets the natural sunlight they crave and then your LEDs will give the extra 4hours. All in all, great i'ble.

author
nick_hunter made it!(author)2011-06-16

Indoor light also works on solar calculators.

author
DemonDomen made it!(author)2009-03-23

Actually, the purpose of this project is to add 4 additional hours of light. The plant gets the natural amount of light plus 4.

author
awang8 made it!(author)2009-03-23

But plants grow best with the natural amount of light. If you add more light it's not organic because the leafs are forcing the plant to take extra nutrients... Unneeded nutrients...

author
chrwei made it!(author)2009-04-06

but a tomato growing in December can't get the the correct amount of natural light

author
awang8 made it!(author)2009-04-07

Yes it can! It's summer in December!

author
DemonDomen made it!(author)2009-05-03

Australia?

author
awang8 made it!(author)2009-06-07

Yeah.

author
Derin made it!(author)2009-04-06

And if you grow a potato,then the plant will be a couch potato!

author
awang8 made it!(author)2009-04-07

Why not grow potatoes inside a couch-shaped container? Not a couch potato, a potato couch!

author
godfreyandthandi made it!(author)2009-03-14

just use some capacitors?

author
greeneggsandham made it!(author)2009-04-13

Not as good as batteries.

author
Akin+Yildiz made it!(author)2014-04-29

hello DemonDomen, very smart design. what if you used a better light source... check out my design! we can add automatic watering too...

https://www.instructables.com/id/LED-plant-light-ba...

love & peace

IMAG0348.jpgF09OVZOHU842FQX.jpg
author
ASCAS made it!(author)2011-08-22

You do know that there is a cheaper and easier way to to this. I made a circuit that only uses 4 components.
1 - LDR
1 - NPN Transistor
1 - Resistor
1 - LED

author
DemonDomen made it!(author)2011-09-13

Your LED would glow all night, but mine turns off after 4 hours of darkness.

author
ASCAS made it!(author)2011-09-14

oh so thats why you used a IC chip. You know that mosfets works good too :)))for a adjustable timer with a light sensor :))) other than that nice job :D

author
narendralkcrazy made it!(author)2011-09-12

like this...

author
drgnflyz made it!(author)2011-07-24

I am going to adapt this (along with the solar panel and battery) to give my chickens the extra 4 hours of light they need (inside their small coop) during the winter so that they will continue to lay eggs! Thank you for the instructable!

author
Zhelnot made it!(author)2010-08-05

can u show me the sketches?

author
albylovesscience made it!(author)2009-08-03

what are the plants growing ln

author
awang8 made it!(author)2009-06-07

I'll be using this for my hydroponics system i'm going to set up one day... One day... I'll be making some heavy modifications. Basically, it means I won't be using a microcontroller. I'll use one of those power timer thingys and that also saves the hassle of running your wall-wart 24/7.

author
kanikedude03 made it!(author)2009-04-23

can someone give me an example of the correct leds to use from mouser. They have so many different types of leds, and i'm not sure exactly what i need. Red LEDs is a bit general. haha

author
DemonDomen made it!(author)2009-05-01
author
Jon316 made it!(author)2009-04-26

the ATTiny26 dat your asking for is it a LM324 Quad Op Amp i saw dis one in radio shack and it looks like the one that is demonstrated in the pic

author
DemonDomen made it!(author)2009-05-01

No. The ATTiny26 is a microcontroller, the LM324 is an amplifier.

author
awang8 made it!(author)2009-03-06

Are you sure red LEDs are enough? I thought you're supposed to use a mixture of red, white, ultraviolet and infrared.

author
DemonDomen made it!(author)2009-03-08

Red is included in white. I agree on the UV and IR part, but I'd have to buy the leds.

author
awang8 made it!(author)2009-03-08

Oh wait, yeah. White has a mixture of all colours. Forgot.

Once someone told me you need green lights to grow plants. Totally disagree!

author
El+Chucko+Norris made it!(author)2009-03-09

green lights are the worst the color of the plants reflects green light so they would die in only green light. red is best

author
jamwaffles made it!(author)2009-03-12

Thanks for sorting this all out guys - i was going to ask if red LEDs were enough myself, but i've just read all this and now im sorted. cheers lads

author
awang8 made it!(author)2009-03-12

In conclusion, red, blue, ultraviolet and infrared make a perfect greenhouse growth light.

author
jamwaffles made it!(author)2009-03-13

w00t lol. is the infrared there for heat (whiche you dont get out of LEDs) or for the plant for some reason?

author
Derin made it!(author)2009-04-06

The IR here is not the heat type of IR,it is the light type.

author
jamwaffles made it!(author)2009-04-07

aah right. i knew my physics teacher is really a loony :P thanks for clearing that up

author
awang8 made it!(author)2009-03-17

Plant's absorb IR.

author
bdelanghe made it!(author)2009-03-12

Red LED's should work great to supplement a little extra light. A few blue LEDs wouldn't hurt seeing as plants absorb that part of the spectrum. Green lights will do nothing. And IR and UV will actually damage the plants.

author
awang8 made it!(author)2009-03-12

I disagree. Plants absorb UV and IR as well as blue and red. The sun naturally emits UV and IR and if it damages the plant then... Well... Your garden would be dead if that theory was true.

author
shamanwhitewolf made it!(author)2009-03-13

Since we're using LEDs, I wonder if we can use a potato to power the light, thus feeding its own growth (still requiring nutrients, of course). Citrus and others could work also.

Not mine, but an example of bio-power:
https://www.instructables.com/id/The-Bio-Battery---Power-for-the-future.-So-easy-a/

author
eyalww made it!(author)2009-03-12

SO COOL i'm so going to do this one... thanx!!!

author
headlessbubble made it!(author)2009-03-11

sweet I want to try this

author
merseyless made it!(author)2009-03-07

the simpler way to do this is with a transistor, light dependant resistor and a light emitting diode... but that doesn't have the added awesomeness of having to programme!

author
DemonDomen made it!(author)2009-03-08

If you want, I can send you the schematic I made a while ago. I uses two transistors, a photoresistor and leds. The reason I used an AVR is that it is a lot easier and I can add the possibility, that the led turns off after 4 hours.

author
zaketus made it!(author)2009-03-01

Is there a particular reason why you used red LEDs instead of for example white LEDs? Improvement idea: How about adding line or few of code to make it sense darkness instead of passing shadow? So when it senses "oh there's not much light" it'll keep measuring amount of light for 5-10s and if there is still dark -> turn on the leds. This way LEDs wont turn on for example when cat walks infront of the sensor. Anyway, great project.

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