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.
add a solar panel and a battery and ditch the wall-wart for extra awesomeness
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...
uh, sun shines during the day, charges battery, sun goes down, lights run off battery.... never seen a solar landscaping light?
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.
<p>No, the purpose of this is to give plants 4 extra hours of light.</p>
solar panels work inside too
Uhh... No they don't.
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.
Indoor light also works on solar calculators.
Actually, the purpose of this project is to add 4 additional hours of light. The plant gets the natural amount of light plus 4.
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...
but a tomato growing in December can't get the the correct amount of natural light
Yes it can! It's summer in December!
And if you grow a potato,then the plant will be a couch potato!
Why not grow potatoes inside a couch-shaped container? Not a couch potato, a potato couch!
just use some capacitors?
Not as good as batteries.
<p>hello DemonDomen, very smart design. what if you used a better light source... check out my design! we can add automatic watering too...</p><p><a href="http://www.instructables.com/id/LED-plant-light-battery-powered/" rel="nofollow">http://www.instructables.com/id/LED-plant-light-ba...</a></p><p>love &amp; peace</p>
You do know that there is a cheaper and easier way to to this. I made a circuit that only uses 4 components.<br>1 - LDR<br>1 - NPN Transistor<br>1 - Resistor<br>1 - LED
Your LED would glow all night, but mine turns off after 4 hours of darkness.
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
like this...
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!
can u show me the sketches?
what are the plants growing ln
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.
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
Get one of those: <a rel="nofollow" href="http://de.mouser.com/Search/Refine.aspx?N=254249+4294631172+4294739373+4294722442&amp;Ns=Pricing|0">http://de.mouser.com/Search/Refine.aspx?N=254249+4294631172+4294739373+4294722442&amp;Ns=Pricing|0</a><br/><br/>Pick some cheap ones and they should look something like this:<br/><a rel="nofollow" href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:LEDs_8_5_3mm.JPG">http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:LEDs_8_5_3mm.JPG</a><br/>
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
No. The ATTiny26 is a microcontroller, the LM324 is an amplifier.
Are you sure red LEDs are enough? I thought you're supposed to use a mixture of red, white, ultraviolet and infrared.
Red is included in white. I agree on the UV and IR part, but I'd have to buy the leds.
Oh wait, yeah. White has a mixture of all colours. Forgot.<br/><br/>Once someone told me you need <em>green</em> lights to grow plants. Totally disagree!<br/>
green lights are the worst the color of the plants reflects green light so they would die in only green light. red is best
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
In conclusion, red, blue, ultraviolet and infrared make a perfect greenhouse growth light.
w00t lol. is the infrared there for heat (whiche you dont get out of LEDs) or for the plant for some reason?
The IR here is not the heat type of IR,it is the light type.
aah right. i knew my physics teacher is really a loony :P thanks for clearing that up
Plant's absorb IR.
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.
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.
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.<br/><br/>Not mine, but an example of bio-power:<br/><a href="http://www.instructables.com/id/The-Bio-Battery---Power-for-the-future.-So-easy-a/">http://www.instructables.com/id/The-Bio-Battery---Power-for-the-future.-So-easy-a/</a><br/>
SO COOL i'm so going to do this one... thanx!!!
sweet I want to try this
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!
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.
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.

About This Instructable


170 favorites


More by DemonDomen: Simple electronic dice DIY Digital Thermometer EPROM reader
Add instructable to: