New eBook and AudioBook available

I’ve created a new eBook and AudioBook titled, “Green Nanny’s Guide to Indoor Controlled Environment Agriculture Cannabis IoT and Control Systems.” It’s now available for purchase.

This is the first of what I hope is many technology guides aimed at the cannabis industry. It’s not a huge book. It’s just under 50 pages and the AudioBook is just under 1.5 hours. However, it does fulfill a need.

This book was written to help technology professionals who are interested in a high-level view of how technology is applied to the cannabis cultivation process. This presentation gives a quick overview of the book with a summary of each chapter.

Here’s a short video that covers the basics:

Book introduction

This is a no fluff overview of the IoT sensors, controls systems, and basic concepts that relate to growing cannabis in a controlled environment agriculture indoor facility – normally known as a “grow.” This guide is designed for technical specialists who may be familiar with traditional IoT and control systems, but wish to know more about the products and systems used in the cannabis industry. This is a non-opinionated reference. Each chapter of this short book covers a different topic in enough detail to give the reader the basic understanding of the concept, how the concept fits into the growth and flowering cycle of cannabis, examples of the technology, and even examples of brands and products.

This book is not a guide for growing cannabis. It is not an opinionated approach to building the architecture needed to create a successful indoor grow. This book’s goal is to quickly familiarize the reader with the technology, give the reader a basic sense of how to apply the technology, and suggest specific vendors and products that supply the technology, but I leave it to the reader to take deeper dives into opinionated approaches to building information systems for cannabis.

Chapter 1 : 3D microclimate mapping

3D microclimate mapping is a process of using modern technology to measure the environment in which cannabis plants are grown. This data is then used to create a 3D map of the environment, which can be used to analyze the temperature, humidity, light, and other variables of the space. This information can be used to identify and address any areas of the grow space that may have suboptimal conditions for plant growth, and to optimize irrigation and fertilization practices. There are several products, systems, and vendors that can help indoor cannabis gardeners to create 3D microclimate maps of their grow spaces.

Chapter 2: Canopy Management

Canopy management is an important aspect of indoor cannabis cultivation that helps to optimize the growth and yield of the plants while also improving the overall quality of the cannabis being produced. There are several technologies that can help indoor cannabis growers with canopy management, such as LED grow lights, climate control systems, nutrient delivery systems, automated watering systems, and pruning and training tools. There are also many products, systems, and vendors that can help indoor cannabis gardeners with canopy management.

Chapter 3: CO and CO2

Carbon dioxide (CO2) and carbon monoxide (CO) are both important elements for indoor cannabis growers to control in order to ensure optimal plant growth and safety. Various technologies exist to help growers control CO2 levels, such as CO2 generators, tanks and regulators, CO2 sensors, and carbon dioxide enrichment systems. For managing CO buildup, technologies such as carbon monoxide detectors, ventilation systems, air purifiers, and gas-fired heating and lighting systems can be used. It is important for growers to carefully research and consider the various options before making a decision.

Chapter 4: Crop Logistic Systems

A crop logistics system is a system that manages the flow of materials, information, and other resources within an indoor cannabis facility. It can help to streamline operations, ensure quality control, reduce costs, and minimize environmental impact. To implement a crop logistics system, technologists should understand the cannabis cultivation process, regulatory requirements, data management, material handling, facility design, and project management. Popular crop logistics systems on the market include BioTrackTHC, Leaf, Flowhub, and Cultivo. The best system for a particular facility will depend on its specific needs and budget.

Chapter 5: Cultivation data tracking by room, harvest, and strain

Indoor cannabis growers often need to track cultivation data by room, harvest, and strain in order to identify issues, understand trends and patterns, and understand the unique characteristics of each strain. There are a variety of technologies and products available to help growers track this data, such as cultivation software, sensors and monitoring systems, smart devices, and manual data tracking. Popular products and vendors include Trellis, Leafly, CannaFarm, and GreenBroz.

Chapter 6: Digital grow journals and calendars

Digital grow journals and calendars are useful tools for indoor cannabis growers to track the progress of their plants and optimize the growing conditions for maximum yield and potency. There are a number of products and vendors that offer digital grow journals and calendars specifically designed for indoor cannabis growers, such as GrowBuddy, CannaCal, GrowPlanner, and GrowDiaries.

Chapter 7: DLI sensors

DLI sensors are devices used by indoor cannabis growers to measure and record the amount of light that a plant receives on a daily basis. They are used to ensure that plants receive the optimal amount of light for growth and development, optimize the use of lighting systems, identify potential issues with the grow space, and understand how different lighting conditions impact plant growth. Technologists should understand how to install, calibrate, use, and maintain DLI sensors, and there are a variety of vendors and products available on the market.

Chapter 8: Environmental sensors for temperature, relative humidity (RH), and VPD

Environmental sensors for temperature, relative humidity, and VPD are important tools for monitoring and controlling the growing environment in indoor cannabis facilities. These sensors help growers optimize plant growth and yield by providing real-time data on key environmental parameters, enabling them to make informed decisions about how to manage the growing environment. Technologists need to understand how to properly install, calibrate, and maintain these sensors, and there are a variety of vendors and products on the market to choose from.

Chapter 9: Integrated pest management systems

Integrated pest management (IPM) is a sustainable approach to pest control that combines various techniques to reduce the use of pesticides and minimize their potential negative impacts on human health and the environment. Technologists responsible for integrating an IPM program into an indoor cannabis grow facility should understand the various strategies, common pests, potential impacts, principles of pest management, regulations, and the importance of proper training and education. There are many vendors and products available on the market for indoor cannabis IPM systems, and it is important to carefully research and compare different vendors and products to find the best fit.

Chapter 10: LUX Monitoring

LUX monitoring is a tool used to measure the amount of light in an indoor cannabis grow facility and ensure that the plants are receiving the optimal amount of light for growth. It is different from DLI sensors, which measure the amount of photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) that is received by the plants. Technologists need to understand how to measure LUX, the optimal LUX levels for different stages of plant growth, and the various factors that can affect LUX levels in order to effectively integrate it into an indoor cannabis grow facility.

Chapter 11: PAR Monitors

PAR monitors are important tools for indoor cannabis grow facilities, as they measure the amount of Photosynthetically Active Radiation (PAR) present in the environment. Technologists need to understand how PAR monitors work, the importance of PAR in plant growth, the optimal range of PAR for cannabis plants, how to interpret PAR monitor readings, and how to troubleshoot and maintain PAR monitors in order to effectively integrate them into a cannabis indoor grow facility.

Chapter 12: Plant tag importing and tracking

Indoor cannabis grow facilities often need to implement plant tag importing and tracking for a variety of reasons, including compliance with regulations and laws, improving efficiency and profitability, and ensuring the safety and quality of their products. Technologists responsible for integrating the process into a cannabis indoor grow facility need to understand regulatory requirements, data management, tracking systems, integration with other systems, and security. Popular vendors and products on the market for indoor cannabis plant tag importing and tracking include BioTrackTHC, METRC, LeafData Systems, Flowhub, and MJ Freeway.

Chapter 13: Pipe and Tank sensors for EC, pH & temperature

Pipe and tank sensors for EC, pH, and temperature are important tools for indoor cannabis grow facilities, as they can help to improve the quality, efficiency, and compliance of their operations, as well as ensure the safety of their products. Technologists who are responsible for integrating these sensors will need to understand sensor technology, data management, integration with other systems, alarms and alerts, and maintenance. Popular vendors and products on the market include HANNA Instruments, SensorPush, Bluelab, Nutrient Technologies, and Yara.

Chapter 14: Strain or harvest batch recipes

Strain or harvest batch recipes provide a consistent and reliable way for indoor cannabis grow facilities to produce high-quality cannabis. Various technologies, such as seed-to-sale tracking software, automated grow systems, and data management and analysis tools, can be used to track and apply strain or harvest batch recipes in an indoor cannabis grow facility. Popular vendors and products on the market for indoor cannabis strain or harvest batch recipe technologies include BioTrackTHC, Leafly, Trellis, and GroGuru.

Chapter 15: Substrate sensors for water content (WC), EC, and temperature

Substrate sensors are used in indoor cannabis grow facilities to measure water content, electrical conductivity, and temperature in order to maintain optimal growing conditions for plants. Technologists need to understand how to properly calibrate, install, collect and analyze data from, maintain, and safely use these sensors. Popular vendors and products on the market for these sensors include Decagon Devices, Sentek Technologies, Campbell Scientific, Delta-T Devices, and METER Group.

You can purchase the book here:

Published by Shawn Deggans

I’m a solution architect with a focus on event-based data platforms using Microsoft Azure Cloud and Open Source technologies. I’ve been developing solutions using web and cloud technologies for over twenty years. Recently, I’ve set my focus on the Controlled-Environment Agriculture (CEA) domain, and I’m building partnerships with individuals and organizations interested in using my skill set to deliver their desired business outcomes. My goals as a consultant and technologist are to help teams better align their technology efforts with business outcomes in a way that is clear and observable through collaborative Domain-Driven Design workshops and DevOps practices. I help deliver solutions that are tailored for the needs of the organizations I serve with a focus on Internet of Things, machine learning, and analytics on Azure Cloud and open source technologies.

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