Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from Oz.
I live in Western Australia and just recently we had a heat wave that smashed my avocado tree that has been happily providing me fruit for years now but is now dying from a 43 degree Celsius day.
We have had much hotter days, some around the 46 degree’s but in the past, I have had my retic turned on and thus not affected the tree.
Unfortunately I had been told to turn off my retic to the avocado tree as I was killing it with kindness due to overwatering and led to believe it was big and old enough now that it had found it’s own water source.
I have a removed my existing retic controller, programmed and then wired into a Sonoff 4 Pro my current solenoids which now control all watering of the avocado tree.
So, I want to know if the soil is too dry and hence automate my retic.
Any ideas taking into account I can power anything I use with solar and batteries??
EcoWitt (and I assume other weather stations) do a soil moisture sensor. Might be worth a look. And hello from the east...
That said, they may not go deep enough for a tree... Typically meant for pots
I use the ecowitt soil sensors in pots. They do work fairly well but as your neighbor to the east points out the probe is only about 3-4" deep. However if my knowledge of the avocado tree is correct (thank you wikipedia) don't they have a pretty shallow root system? Ecowitts might work just fine. I also have some experience with the Spruce sensors and found they dropped off the network frequently and were a pain to reset. One issue I've found with soil sensors is it is possible to position them in such a way that the water either collects underneath them or bypasses them, which means they are wildly inaccurate at first but settle into a more accurate reading after an hour or two. I might suggest several sensors placed strategically.
@sburke781's integration is rock solid and 100% local.
I'll be able to test this myself in the next month, just ordered my first EcoWitt soil moisture sensor
Do you have an avocado tree to test with?
There's one across the road...
Thank you, guys, for your suggestions.
The avocado tree does have very shallow roots that reach out to the length of the tree branches and a large tap root in the centre that I mistakenly though had found its own water source.
Regardless though, this is exactly what I was looking for.
R&D to follow now, will keep you apprised of my progress.
Thank you again
There's something mystical about discussing watering schemes for an avocado tree after coming in from round 2 with the snowblower.