Monthly Archives: October 2014

Adding automation with Doris the Doser

We’ve been adding some new automation features for ourselves and our clients. This post will detail Lee’s experiences using the GroHaus system. We noticed that the system we used didn’t actually have a name, so we called ours Doris. Doris the Doser.

Meet Doris!


Doris is by far the simplest and most straightforward automation system that we’ve found so far. To set her up, we built our own custom cart, which was probably the most time consuming part of the process.

Custom cart by Boswyck Farms.

Custom cart by Boswyck Farms.

From there, it was just a question of running plumbing, calibrating the system, and setting our target EC and pH levels.

Setting up Doris' electronic insides.

Setting up Doris’ electronic insides.

Plumbing was run between the nutrient pumps and our stock tanks of General Hydroponics nutrients (Flora Duo parts A and B, along with pH Down), between nutrient pumps and the reservoir, and between the reservoir and the sample pot for testing.

Doris' new home at Project FIND!

Doris’ new home at Project FIND!

We installed Doris at our client Project FIND. Their systems are on a rooftop, so we needed to build a weatherproof enclosure to keep everything safe. We used a case that was originally designed to house outdoor computer systems, which has temperature sensors and cooling fans to keep the system at the right temperature in case of warm weather.

All in all, this was a great experience: learning new automation technologies, building custom houses for them, and using existing materials to amplify what we can do in different environments. If you have questions about automation, we’re always happy to help! Just email us.

Five Gallon Bucket Workshop: Monday, October 13th

We’re really excited for the return of our Five Gallon Bucket Workshop on Monday, October 13th. The workshop will run from 7 – 9 PM at our new space in Astoria. Come learn about the basics of hydroponics, and then get hands-on instruction to build your own drip system to take home!

We heard that some people have had an issue with the registration form. You can register by clicking this link. Drop ins also accepted — but remember, the cost of the class is $100 for people who pre-register, and $115 for drop ins. So registration makes sense!

See you on Monday.