If you’ve ever entertained the idea of getting a bit green-fingered, but also want a bit of assistance from HomeKit, it would seem that your prayers are now answered with the introduction of SmallGarden by ēdn (pronounced ‘Eden’ we assume…). This device is essentially an updated smart & connected window box to grow small flowers, herbs or even fruit and vegetables in some cases, but with the addition of HomeKit support.
Selling on the company’s own website as well as making its debut appearance on Apple’s US Online Store, the SmallGarden can accommodate up to ten plants, each of which come pre-planted inside the company’s own ‘seedpods’, that then sit inside the separate housings. The plants are provided with lighting from a strip of LEDs from above which also serves as a handle to move your SmallGarden around.
The SeedPods already contain time-released nutrients designed specifically for the plants that are contained within them, so all you need to do is water them, although even that can be automatically controlled via the company’s own app, with a water tray that stores weeks worth of water.
The list of preprepared plants the company is quite extensive, with eight different herbs, which includes four varieties of Basil, as well as four types of lettuce, and three different flowers. The company will be expanding on this, but also provide unseeded SeedPods, so you can plant your own seeds if you wish.
As regards the smart side of things, specifically HomeKit, the accompanying app requires access to your Home data, and once granted, will need a WiFi connection.
UPDATE: We’ve heard back from ēdn, who have said “We are currently configured as a light accessory. We are currently working with Apple and plan to expose new sensor capabilities in the future.”
At present, there aren’t any specific details as to what services or sensors are exposed to HomeKit, but taking other outdoor soil sensors into account, as well as Xiaomi’s own soil monitors as a starting point, it’s quite possible that soil moisture, temperature, humidity and light levels are exposed, as well as having the ability to control the built-in lights.
Currently priced at US$199.00 on the Apple Store, it’s certainly not exactly cheap, although the SeedPods are reasonably priced, at US$25.00 for a pack of ten, the initial outlay could pay for itself over time if you use a lot of herbs or eat salads on a regular basis (which you should…)