The code that runs our IKEA VÄXER Internet of Seeds
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Internet of Seeds

Plants side

This is the code that runs our Internet of Seeds project, that consists of an IKEA VÄXER hydroponics system equipped with a Raspberry Pi Zero and camera, Flotilla dock, and weather, light, colour and motion modules.

Read more about how we set it up here on our blog.


You'll need to install the python-picamera, pandas, tweepy, sparkblocks and flotilla libraries.

sudo apt-get install python-picamera python-pandas
sudo pip install tweepy
sudo pip install py-sparkblocks
git clone
cd flotilla-python/library
sudo python install

We've used Roboto as the font for our timestamping and sensor data overlay. You'll also need Arial Unicode MS for the sparklines

To use tweepy to tweet, you'll need to set up a new app on the Twitter developer site. It's free to do. You'll then need to add your own consumer and access keys and secrets in a config.json file. See config.example.json as an example.

The paths in the shell scripts assume that this repo is in your home directory.

We'd also suggest using a large micro SD card, preferably 64GB, since you'll be capturing a lot of images.

Using the scripts

We chose to use cron to run the two Python scripts via a couple of shell scripts.

You can do the following to run the image capture/data logging script every 10 minutes and the tweeting script 4 times daily, at 00:05, 06:05, 12:05 and 18:05.

After typing crontab -e, add the following lines to the bottom.

*/10 * * * * sh /home/pi/internet-of-seeds/ >> /home/pi/internet-of-seeds/data/cron.log
05 00,06,12,18 * * * /home/pi/internet-of-seeds/ >> /home/pi/internet-of-seeds/data/cron.log

This also logs all of the standard output to a file named cron.log in the data directory.