Taking Your Gardening Dollar

The EasyBloom Report, Part One

  Easybloom

Some of you may recall that I had a few things to say about the Black & Decker EasyBloom a while back. Do we really need little egadgets in the garden to tell us when to water or what to plant, that sort of thing.

Well, the people at Black & Decker read the post — and not just any people, but the actual guy who helped develop it — and offered to send me one. Next thing you know, I found one sitting on my porch.

I'm on the road a lot right now so it hasn't been easy to find time to play with this new toy.  But a couple days ago I did manage to get it out of its package, download the software, and plug it into my computer. I wasn't happpy about downloading any more software to my computer–you know how Windows is, all baggy and slow and easily confused–and honestly, I'm quite sure I'll uninstall it as soon as I'm finished playing with this gadget.

I also paid my $3/month to get full data from the EasyBloom–some things are free, but others require that you subscribe–and being the intrepid reporter that I am, the $3 seemed like a worthwhile investment to get the full picture.

So.  Create an account online, download software, pay $3, plug the gadget into the computer so they can start talking to each other, then, once it's all synched up, go outside and stick it in the ground.

That's as far as I've gotten. I'm back on an airplane–actually in Phoenix as you read this–so it'll sit outside until I get home this weekend and have a chance to take a reading, which is supposed to tell me something about sunlight, moisture, and soil conditions, and suggest plants for that spot based on the data it gathers along with my zip code.

Assuming the EasyBloom and I both make it through the week, I'll be back after the weekend with a full report!

Posted by on October 6, 2010 at 8:43 am, in the category Taking Your Gardening Dollar.
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25 Responses to “The EasyBloom Report, Part One”

  1. Joe Lamp'l says:

    Alright! Love this kind of reality reporting of garden gadgets. I have to admit, I haven’t tried this myself yet and I’m a garden gadget guy for sure. Looking forward to your update.

  2. Laura Bell says:

    I’ve considered this many times – conditions on my plot of land are changing with the growth & maturation of many trees. Have been wondering if it would be worth it simply for the data on sun hours. Then I’d know if it’s even worth it to plant certain things in the veggie garden next summer.

  3. MarkNDenver says:

    Leave it the B&D to create something for the garden – that esthetically looks bad. How much does this thing cost?
    I like the idea of checking out things in each micro climate in my garden. But I am waiting on the edge of my seat to read your follow up.
    Keep up the good work and rant away…
    MarkNDenver

  4. lifeshighway says:

    I am amused by the idea of the EasyBloom and if it didn’t tell you much in the way of actually helping garden a few of them would make a heck of a border.

  5. I’m with MarkNDenver… even if it was the best thing ever, why does it have to be so UGLY?

  6. Laura Bell says:

    Mark & Joseph : It’s probably not good to leave this gadget (with sensitive tech inside, no doubt) out in the weather for long. Perhaps they made it ugly purposely to make sure gardeners wouldn’t forget to remove it after a few days or so. Just a thought…

  7. Amy, I am happy you are willing to try this out in your own garden after your Rant appeared about the product. Shows why I like this blog. You people are open to experiment with new gadgets, and perhaps a new way to look at things. Why not?
    Congratulations.

  8. Gabby says:

    I know how busy you are. I could never do what you do. I am glad that you take the time to share all of this great information. I have learned alot from following your post and I have travel places on my computer because of you. I have enjoyed all of it. I hope that this new gadget will work to your satisfaction because I know that you do not have time to waste playing around with bad items. If, it does work, I know that you will share with us the good, bad and the ugly. I trust your advice. I can not wait to hear your report.

  9. Pam J. says:

    “Create an account online, download software, pay $3, plug the gadget into the computer so they can start talking to each other, then, once it’s all synched up, go outside and stick it in the ground.”
    This product seems, I’m sorry, just plain silly. I’m basically a fan of capitalism but stuff like this gives me pause.

  10. anne says:

    So maybe this gadget is really useful for someone who travels a lot, and can’t be out in their garden to observe first-hand what’s going on there. But I’m willing to bet Amy is about as aware as it’s possible to be about what’s going on in her garden, so it will really be interesting to read the follow-up, especially comparing what she thinks is going on in the garden with what the gadget says is really going on. I look forward to it!

  11. Benjamin says:

    Get hosta. Get arborvitae. Get mums. Home Depot: 550 West 17th Ave. Sincerely, Easy Bloom.

  12. Chris M. says:

    I am looking forward to your report on this gadget, Susan because it is the one thing I imagined I would like to have. I am not a gadget person but from my own experience the one thing that seems so hard to figure out is whether a certain location will grow what you want to plant. I’ve been growing stuff in a spot I assumed was ‘sunny’ and finally noticed the plants leaning toward the sun….so if I had known…etc.,

  13. Are we absolutely sure the USA has not been zapped with an electromagnetic terror pulse discombobulating any and all electronic gadgets, computers, and any brains on tiny chips? For the last two months I have been nothing but tortured by the electronics and software in autos, cameras, cars and computers. I can grow me some plants blindfolded, but perhaps I have me a black tech thumb.

    So the thought of “Create an account online, download software, pay $3, plug the gadget into the computer so they can start talking to each other, then, once it’s all synched up, go outside and stick it in the ground.” When “Windows is, all baggy and slow and easily confused–” just makes me want to retch.

    I’d rather be outside just gardening and letting my natural, genetically encoded observation sensors do the work they were made for.

  14. susan harris says:

    B&D sent me one of these, unasked, and it’s still sitting in the box, untried. All that hassle setting it up – ugh.

  15. I hope I still get invited to dinner parties. If they get all their questions answered with this “fake flower” spouting out plant this, plant that, my usefulness on earth will be through.

  16. I am really interested of garden gadget and I think I am going to purchase this to give it a try.

  17. Abby says:

    You lost me at “pay $3/month”.

  18. Henny Penny says:

    $3/month?

    How about the petunia test to determine how sunny an area is? Thrive=full sun, sit and do nothing = part sun, die = shade.

    Red that in a book. It was great advice!

  19. Henny Penny says:

    $3/month?

    How about the petunia test to determine how sunny an area is? Thrive=full sun, sit and do nothing = part sun, die = shade.

    Read that in a book. It was great advice!

  20. luise h. says:

    Love the petunia test,hihi

  21. Laurin says:

    et tu, garden rant?

    vomit.

    kudos, hugs, and marriage proposals to christopher c.

    some light reading in the meantime for those who have, perhaps, lost their freakin’ minds, hearts, and souls:

    “we are…in love with real, rambling, chaotic, dirty, bug-ridden gardens…suspicious of the horticultural industry…turned off by any activities that involve ‘landscaping’ with ‘plant materials’…flabbergasted at the idea of a ‘no maintenance garden’…

    to be lured in by a manufacturer’s freebie and give them free commercials…well, ain’t that america. pour some government-subsidized high fructose corn syrup (oops i mean “corn sugar”) on that and bottoms up at your next cocktail hour.

    there is a time and a place and a website or two for this kinda thing, but i never dreamed it would be here. i am so disappointed. :(

  22. susan harris says:

    Oh, Laurin, I wouldn’t worry about GardenRanters selling out for a crappy free gadget – the post above is hardly an endorsement. Yes, we occasionally get freebies but we’re ruthlessly honest about ‘em, and the people who send us those freebies often cringe at the result.

    And I’d marry Christopher C, too.

  23. Laurin says:

    geez..i dunno. corporate lobbyists do politicians the same way, and they have the same response. i’m just sayin’…with luv.

    have you hugged your manifesto today? ;)

    non-computerized, non-plastic flower power, yo.

  24. susan harris says:

    Yeah, the power of cheap, unwanted gadgets to corrupt is well known here in D.C.

  25. Laurin says:

    lol – we laugh, but we’ve gone from a republic to a corpornation with one giant leap for mankind by the supreme court.

    just be careful who’s doing the cultivating and who’s being cultivated around here, that’s all:

    http://tinyurl.com/37r6yvj

    “Ultimately, successful blogger outreach is just like any type of business networking. Be genuine and authentic. Know your messaging and differentiation. And most importantly, think about how you can help the blogger, rather than staying focused on what they can do for you.”

    aw, they really care about you!!

    love you guys. keep keepin’ it real and let the only dirt on our hands be soil!

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