Engineering, Gardening

Backyard Gardening #9: 2019 July Week #4 | #Harvest

Progress

Made a video of the backyard garden for the first time as a story.

SmartGarden Progress

Just out of curiosity, measured the resistance of eggplants and tomato plants. When it is between the edge of a egg plant leaf and stem, the resistance value is about 2MOhm.

Old leaf doesn’t have moisture and it looks like the equivalent resistance of the old leaf is very high (i.e. open circuit). Small and young leaf have less resistance. Depending on the nutrition of the plant, the resistance seems to change.

I can use the tomato as a current limiting resistor to turn on a LED.

Engineering, Gardening

Backyard Gardening #8: 2019 July Week #3 | #SmartGarden #Recycle

Weekly Progress

Tomato started growing more as the temperature in Oregon started going up.

There are six eggplants and each plant now has a bunch of flowers. At the same time, they attract snails 😛


New Crops

Green onions. Bought green onions at a grocery store and kept them in a glass of water. Changed water every morning for two weeks and each has enough roots now. So, it was time to plant them outside.


Harvest

Eggplants

Eggplants

SmartGarden Progress

SmartGarden device now is equipped with GPS sensor (Amazon Link) to keep track of real time information – GPS coordinates can be recorded as well. As the device has an USB charger block to power the Arduino microcontroller (Amazon Link) and other sensors, this became a portable device to check out brightness from the light sensor (Amazon Link).

The picture below shows the Analog Three-way meter and my own SmartGarden device.

LCD display shows Time and converted voltage by Light Sensor
SmartGarden Device with bell peppers
Park Tour, Travel

Explore a New Park #25: Colonel Summers Park, Portland Oregon

Introduction

Again, on a Friday night after work, when we had no plan, why not watch a free movie and eat popcorn with other people in a park. This is a very friendly and safe place to hang around thanks to the City of Portland. On this day (7/12), they had this Movies in the Park event at Colonel Summers Park in East downtown Portland.

How to get there?

It takes about 8 mins drive from downtown Portland. The traffic towards a bridge across Willamette River can get heavy depending on time of a day.

Google Map: https://goo.gl/maps/WiopaLbcutJnHqWj6

How was the park?

Food and Drink

Free Popcorn, Boba tea, and Mexican food from food carts. Public Restroom (Portland Loo) is available.

Free Popcorn
Boba Tea

Park Features

Splash Pad
Baseball field

soccer

Tennis courts

Playground

Movies in the Park

Movie started around 9:30. The movie was Black Panther.

The list of Movies 2019: https://www.portlandoregon.gov/parks/69554

Movie

Extra

There was a community garden next to the park. It is well maintained by a few people.

Engineering, Gardening

Backyard Gardening #7: Light Sensor | #DIY and #Arduino

Introduction

Previously, the smart gardening device was built as an alternative method to the analog three-way meter (amazon link) shown in the picture below.

Programming

Using Arduino Software on Windows OS.

The arduino module used in this project is Arduino Micro (Amazon Link).

The data of light sensor output to Arduino are voltage values. In general, when it is brighter, the resistance value of the light sensor becomes smaller. As an example, about 100 Ohm in the sun light and ~ 10M Ohm in darkness.

Arduino microcontroller is programmed so that the log from Arduino produces the voltage value at a node of the light sensor every second. This indicates the brightness captured by the sensor. The data will be shown on the Arduino console and 4-line LCD.

Testing

With LED Desk Lamp, Arduino and Light Sensor (Amazon Link).

LED Desk Lamp has 4 light brightness levels

Video

As the desk lamp gets brighter, the voltage value goes down. This means that the resistance of the light sensor goes down.

Next

Test this prototype outside and compare the results with the analog meter.

Park Tour, Travel

Explore a New Park #23: Smith Rock Park | #hiking

Introduction

How to get there?

Driving from Portland to Smith Rock Park is about 3 hours depending on traffic in Portland area.

Parking?

$5 for day use. $30 for a year and $50 for 2 years.

Food, Drink, and Bathrooms?

We need to bring outside food and drink. The park recommends to bring extra water.

Toilets are available at the parking area and a couple of spots inside the park.

Flowers and Animals?

How was the hike?

Rock-climbers against the rock wall !!!

Monkey Face Rock. Three people were climbing up.

If you like this post, here are a couple of similar posts.

Gardening

Backyard Gardening #6: 2019 July Week 2 | #eggplants

Introduction

What’s new?

Eggplants started growing faster.

Watermelon is still very slow as its roots need to expand more.

We’ve installed a tomato cage as it is growing big now. The tomato cage also helps grow upwards rather than left and right side.

Eggplant attracted a couple of snails 🙂

Any harvest this week?

Eggplants and blueberries.

Coming up

Start cooking straight from garden.

Park Tour, Travel

Explore a New Park #22: Brooklyn City Park, Portland OR | #MoviesInthePark

Introduction

Every summer in Portland Oregon, Portland Parks and Recreation by the City of Portland offer free movie and live music concerts with local music bands. This is a very friendly event and kids would love it.

The list of movies in 2019 summer is listed here: https://www.portlandoregon.gov/parks/69554

Some movies listed here have different languages as audio and English as subtitles, so you would want to double-check if you are interested.

This post is sharing experience on Friday, July 5th 2019 with Fantastic Beasts for the movie and the Old Yellers for the music.

Park View with people and outside movie theater setup

Park and Event Highlight Picture

Where Is the Parking?

Street Parking is free in the neighborhood.

Google Map: https://goo.gl/maps/ZVjR1zPNjZQUXNt89

Brooklyn Park: https://www.portlandoregon.gov/parks/finder/index.cfm?action=ViewPark&PropertyID=67

Who offer the free movies?

Portland Parks & Recreation by City of Portland. This event was well managed and trash cans and toilets were there. Here is the list of coming up events for the movies in the park.

https://www.portlandoregon.gov/parks/69554

What shall we do before the movie start?

The movie starts after dusk (it started around 9:30pm). Free concert starts around 6:30pm.

kids playground, basketball courts and baseball field are there.

Food and Drink?

Free popcorn and food carts are available. Everybody is welcome to bring any outside food.

How was the movie?

The movie was Fantastic Beasts: Crimes Of Grindelwald from 2018. The movie was a little more than 2 hours (2 hr and 13 min). This is the second movie of the “Fantastic Beasts” series. The content is about what happened before Harry Potter. Young Dumbledore was in the movie.

They played the DVD version. The movie started after 9:30 and finished around 11:30. It got very cold. Extra blankets would help.

If you like this post, here is archive. https://easy2understand4everyone.com/park-tour/

Park Tour, Travel

Explore a New Park #21: Fort Vancouver, Vancouver WA | July 4th Fireworks

Introduction | Fort Vancouver is a National Historical Park and they hold a July 4th Fireworks event. This is one of the biggest fireworks at West Coast. They play music while launch fireworks. They start fireworks after 10pm, which is later than other firework places. So, it is a good idea to bring warm cloths to wait for fireworks.

Park Features:

Highlight Picture

Photo-Story:

How to find parking spot?

Parking is free on July 4th on street. There would be traffic jam after fireworks, so if possible, I’d recommend to park where you could exit from crowd easily. For example, closer to entrance to highway.

There were a couple of people checking car traffic on Evergreen Blvd. You could park on Reserve St or before the bridge. You need to take a walk to the park.

Food and Gift Shops?

Yes, at Visitor Center and Food Cart. You can bring outside food. There was a bag check at the park entrance.

What to do before fireworks start after 10pm?

Art Museum

The front door to enter the museum after the ticket office was unique. The museum ticket was free on July 4th.

Miniature of Fort Vancouver

When do the fireworks start?

Fireworks started around 10:05pm. It was already cold, so good to bring blankets.

Starting Fireworks
July 4th Signature Firework
There was a fire near the highway after the fireworks. Firefighters were able to stop the fire. Great Job!

Park Tour, Travel

Explore a New Park #20: the Oregon Garden, Silverton OR | July 3rd Fireworks

Introduction | Every year, the Oregon Garden offers fireworks and live music one day before Independence day (July 4th) in Silverton Oregon, United States.

Park Features:

Highlight Picture

Photo-story