Unnecessary garden stuff we love



Here’s a gadget I like even better than the moss carpet, or the new thingie that you stick into the soil to analyze your plant needs and it reports them to your computer (more on that later). Garden surveillance!

Well, it’s not really meant to be spywear, but I can see the possibilities of this Timelapse Garden Video Camera. It can take up to 18,000 pictures, every 5 seconds up to every 24 hours, and withstands temperatures from 14° F to 122°. Using the one photo per hour setting, it can take pictures over 4 months.


Oh, the possibilities. You can document the growth of just about any plant and make a cool time lapse video. Or you can find out exactly what goes on in the garden when you’re gone. Who’s been snapping the buds off your hellebores? Or worse, stealing your tomatoes? It needs to happen from dawn to dusk though, at which point the camera switches off automatically. I found it via Neatorama and Hammacher Schlemmer, which is still a great place to find cool stuff.


Oh, and remember the Botanicalls plant sensor that will place a phone call when your plant needs water? Amy wrote about it a couple years back. Did you know that this thing lets your plant Twitter too? And it will have more followers than you do if this tweeting Pothos is any indication.

“Current Moisture: 64%.” “Current Moisture: 59%.” “Water me.” “Water me please.” “Urgent! Water me!” “Thank you for watering me.”

Yes. 3,197 people are following that.

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Elizabeth Licata

Elizabeth Licata has been a regular writer for  Garden Rant since 2007, after contributing a guest rant about the overuse of American flags in front gardens. She lives and gardens in Buffalo, N.Y., which, far from the frozen wasteland many assume it to be, is a lush paradise of gardens, historic architecture, galleries, museums, theaters, and fun. As editor of Buffalo Spree magazine,  Licata helps keep Western New Yorkers apprised about what is happening in their region. She is also a freelance writer and art curator, who’s been published in Fine Gardening, Horticulture, ArtNews, Art in America, the Village Voice, and many other publications. She does regularly radio segments for the local NPR affiliate, WBFO.

Licata is involved with Garden Walk Buffalo, the largest free garden tour in the US and possibly the world,and has written the text for a book about Garden Walk. She has also written and edited several art-related books. Contact Elizabeth: ealicata at yahoo.com


  1. Another worthless, expensive, gadget!

    I’m ordering one immediately!!!

    I’ve always wanted time-lapse photos of spring wildflowers! Bloodroot unwrapping; Toothwort unfolding; Green Dragon unwinding… maybe even an occasional critter wandering through, or birds at a feeder…


  2. “Cat is urinating on me again, red alert!” That thing has endless possibilities, and far more interesting twitter posts. BTW, does anyone find Twitter in the least bit interesting or useful?

  3. Hey Elizabeth,
    I’ll have to look into this one. I have tried and loved, the PlantSensor that you mentioned above. It “reads” your soil and analyzes site and watering problems. I use it for my clients and it has saved me a lot of headaches.

    I asked the manufacturer to send you guys one to try.

  4. Thanks Shirley! I actually have the Plant Sensor (thanks to you?) but they sent it to me when gardening season was over, and it is not yet time to try it (as you can see in my post above).

    Also, I have to install special mac software. But I want to try it!

  5. How do I convince my husband that the camera is not only cool, but necessary … ? And that more than one is even more necessary ?

  6. Elizabeth,
    What a cool tool! I was actually thinking the other day that I could sit and “watch” my garden grow. With your blessing, I’d like to mention on my Saturday Tool Time blog entry the fact the you found this neat gadget and like it!

  7. Last week, in “beekeeping class,” the lecturer said, “Well, if you could set up a camera and train it on your beehive, you’d see…”

    Well, there’s a camera that I could train on my bee hive!

  8. Probably:)

    But I’ve never been too happy with “out the window” shots (glass and screen is a problem).

    This would offer great flexibility; choose a ground view of Trillium blooming, switch to an overview of a patch of woodland turning from brown to green, then out to the prairie for midsummer coneflowers or fall Gentians…

    I think the biggest drawback might be a tendency to fill up an entire computer with movies REAL fast!

  9. Ok, this is cool — now I can have a minute by minute play of each tackle, pass, and punt of each plant in my yard! (as if I don’t have enough pictures 😉

    And how is that thingy you stick in the dirt and then your computer?

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