Consumer Technology

Published on November 18th, 2014 | by Joshua S Hill

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Blossom The Smart Sprinkler Hits Kickstarter, Saves Water

November 18th, 2014 by  

Over the years of writing for the Important Media Network (and its previous incarnation of Green Options), I have been instantly attracted to good consumer technology products that make the environment a priority. The Nest thermostat is a prime example of this, as are the various WiFi-controlled LED lights.

So when I heard about Blossom, I was immediately hooked. The first line of the press email I received reads:

Blossom is a first-of-its-kind smart sprinkler system that conserves water, significantly reduces water utility bills and gives users control from their smartphones or tablets.

As a rabid-green thumb and consumer technology-junkie, Blossom sounded fantastic, and the more I read, the better it got.

Blossom System

Founded by a team with experience at Skype, Nest, Microsoft, Linksys, and Vizio (amongst others), Blossom has just launched a Kickstarter campaign which intends to “scale manufacturing faster and begin shipping in volume sooner.” And as of writing, the campaign has already passed two-thirds of its target with 29 days to go (and as I sit here, that number just keeps getting higher and higher).

Blossom is the logical next step in consumer technology, smartphone apps, and environmental awareness. It automates your sprinklers based on real-time weather data, provides full control via an app, and claims to be able to lower your water bill by up to 30%.

The premise behind Blossom is remarkably simple, which is one of the hallmarks of good technology. As the developers note, “almost half of the water used for outdoor irrigation is wasted.” With this in mind, Blossom sets out to minimise water waste, and better distribute the water according to what your garden needs.

Water

“Most residential irrigation systems rely on archaic controllers that don’t take actual water needs, based on the local weather and vegetation, into account.”

Blossom, however, combines the information available from weather services to determine when is the best time to water, and uses the layout of your garden to determine what area needs more or less water.

“We know what it takes to build a reliable product that scales in the cloud and is cost effective,” noted Blossom founder Manrique Brenes.

“Blossom is the culmination of the expertise we, as the company’s founders, gained in related fields combined with our desire to create something impactful across multiple sectors. With Blossom, we’re not only making users’ lives easier, we’re helping them save money, conserve water and protect the environment for future generations.”

Blossom is set to be priced at $179, and the company believes that it can pay for itself in water cost savings in less than one year. It works with apps for iOS and Android, and boasts a simple installation process with none of the hassles of having to rewire your existing sprinkler system: “Simply remove the old controller, mount the Blossom controller, connect the existing valve wires, and download the Blossom app to be up and running in less than 15 minutes.”

BLOSSOM_APP_02

On top of an already robust system, Blossom connects using WiFi as well as the power of Powerline, which essentially turns an electrical outlet into an internet connection, “so you’ll constantly be connected to the data that makes your yard smarter.”

As a resident of Australia, I’m really excited to see what Blossom can do. Australia is set to see dryer summers and winters, which will minimise both the natural rainfall we get as well as the amount of water we can direct to our gardens. If Blossom can live up to its aims, then in many ways it could be the salvation of thousands of gardens around Australia — and no doubt the world.

So do us all a favour and head on over to Blossom’s Kickstarter campaign, select your reward level, and contribute to a new way of watering your garden.

Thanks go out to Justine Mrsich of Lages & Associates who contacted me about Blossom, and helped me with images and information about Blossom. 

Full Disclosure: This article was not sponsored in any way. I was just really enthusiastic about the product.


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About the Author

I'm a Christian, a nerd, a geek, and I believe that we're pretty quickly directing planet-Earth into hell in a handbasket! I also write for Fantasy Book Review (.co.uk), and can be found writing articles for a variety of other sites. Check me out at about.me for more.



  • Kiwiiano

    The major problem with garden watering is that the majority of domestic sprinklers dump water 10x or more faster that even average soil can absorb it. Surplus water starts “ponding”, forming little puddles where subsequent water droplets cause a turbulence that sorts soil particles and eventually create a clay crust that that will block absorption even more.
    The secret is to keep an eye on the water delivery and measure the amount of water being applied. Even several 2L ice cream containers scattered about the garden will give you an indication. Move the sprinklers as soon as you see small puddles forming. Sandy soils will take longer, clay soils will pond quickly, humus-rich loams perform best (in all ways).
    Look for sprinklers that spread a small volume of water over a large area, for e.g. impulse models perform well while vortex models are hopeless.

  • Kyle Field

    Neat, thanks for sharing 🙂

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