Small greenhouses can benefit from monitoring soil moisture, temperature and electrical conductivity with wireless moisture sensors. They are easy to install, easy to use and provide on demand data to act on soil conditions, a key factor on seed growth.

In this previous post I talked about taking the opportunity to monitor soil conditions in farming fields wirelessly.

I wanted to bring your attention to a smaller and easier to implement and understand case: greenhouses. Small greenhouses can also develop monitoring solutions by using wireless devices and use automation to their advantage.

Take a look at the following short video. It is just an explanation about how a battery-free and wireless moisture sensor tag works.

As you can see, it only requires an RFID reader and different sensor tags to start automating your greenhouse. RFID readers can of course be mobile (see an example from Motorola) so you can source the required data by walking along the location instead of a full automated solution.

When the reader is switched on it detects all RFID tags in its read range. There may be RFID tags and RFID sensor tags in the list. To monitor soil moisture the user selects the specific ID from the ID list and clicks on the “Moisture” button.

Once that’s done, the sensor measures the soil moisture and returns the value to the RFID reader. The video shows a simple application displaying moisture level in a 0-10 scale, but the value can be directly stored for future data mining and business intelligence solutions.

In summary, specific ID and sensor data are uniquely associated and transferred to a database. Moisture data can this way be associated to a specific soil area or even a specific plant, which gives the farmer the opportunity to treat each soil area or plant independently to guarantee their best conditions for growth.

Read more about the battery-free wireless moisture sensor tags here.