Green tech gardening firm launches solar powered watering system

A green tech company is looking for funds to expand its range of smart greenhouses.

Harvst launched a Kickstarter to help create a solar powered greenhouse and polytunnel irrigation system.

They say their product, WaterMate, can run anywhere in the garden and pumps water from a water tank, which means no tap is required. It offers two separate watering areas, ideal for plants with different watering needs or schedules in the same location.

The Harvst team has developed two models, one for smaller greenhouses and one for larger greenhouses and polytunnels; WaterMate Mini is £ 199 and WaterMate Pro is £ 299. Although they are available at a discount through the Kickstarter.

Harvst, based in Cardigan, West Wales, is a green tech smart greenhouse company co-founded by Chris Tanner and Rik Sellwood, both passionate hobby gardeners with successful innovation and technology backgrounds.

The couple, who live in the village of Ferwig in West Wales, came together last year during the Covid pandemic to bring the Harvst concept to life.

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With the business, they are aimed at enthusiastic gardeners who want to take a break from watering or who need their vacation.

Mr. Tanner, director of the company, said, “We are delighted with the early progress on this campaign, which combines nearly two years of hard work and development. WaterMate has been tested and proven and is now ready to help gardeners automatically water their plants as needed to save gardeners time and reduce water requirements. “

The business started with a range of smart, self-watering, air-conditioned mini greenhouses.

Mr. Sellwood said, “While many of us have the advantage of having access to a garden or other land locally, we wanted to create an easier way to grow for those with limited space and time. The Harvst systems help people grow more. “

The Yard and The Terrace, both priced at £ 680, and The Garden (£ 850) sit directly on the floor or bolt onto a properly sized raised bed. The company says the aluminum frames can withstand strong winds and all types of weather.

These Harvst kits are sold as “intelligent” and are connected to the mains either via a 240 V cable or via a solar panel. The control system and built-in irrigation unit keep track of all environmental conditions inside and send information to a web-based app that can be accessed on the user’s phone or computer.

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The technology means that when plants need water they can be watered through sprinklers and sprinklers attached to a dedicated hose, rain barrel, or rain collection fitting pump. When it gets too hot, the roof opens.

Heating and lighting units can be added so that heating goes on when it is cold and light on the mains power product when it is dark.

The online Harvst app allows owners to manage and monitor their box and add it to a “grow journal” detailing what they have planted and picked. The app prompts users to take appropriate action to help plants grow better, depending on the type of plant and its stage of growth.

Users share this data anonymously with Harvst, with the ultimate goal of creating a broader Harvst community that provides useful tips and information, as well as recommendations for the best watering and temperature settings based on what, where and when to grow.

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