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This smart automated grow box makes it easy to grow your own pot.
Growing your own weed has some seedy associations: the rumored cannabis patch behind the local high school, the spacy dude with a basement full of hydroponic herb, or maybe just an illicit plant or two hidden in an otherwise-ordinary garden.
From the app, you can watch step-by-step instruction videos or check on your plants via a live webcam. The app also lets you monitor and alter grow conditions like air temperature, water temperature, pH, humidity, water level, and plant height. It even provides grow recipes, lets you find recipes created by other growers, or create your own. The whole process is precise and automatic, which means you can be as hands-on (or off) as you’d like.
It’s not the first time we’ve seen a smart automated grow box, but Leaf’s specialized focus on growing weed is what makes it unique. The device will be available for purchase this fall, and Leaf promises their first grow boxes will be heavily discounted for those who pre-register. There’s no price tag assigned yet, but founder Yoni Ofir says to expect something in the $2,000 range. Still, the company claims its grow boxes will prove a big money-saver when compared with other methods of obtaining medical marijuana.
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Updated April 20, 2017
But with more states and lobbyist groups pushing for medical or recreational marijuana use, a startup called Leaf is trying to capitalize on the craze with smart, fridge-like grow boxes specifically made for growing marijuana at home.
However, this technology comes at a cost. The device will retail for $1,499, which makes it much more expensive than simply growing your plant in the ground. However, the company says that the machine will technically pay for itself after just a few months, as the “retail value” of 4-5 ounces (one growth cycle) is around $1,200.
Marijuana is a sticky subject. Twenty-three states (and D.C) have legalized some form of medical use, but possession, growth and distribution are still illegal in the majority of the United States.
The system will also react to these measurements, meaning that if it senses that your plants are low on nutrients it can dispense more, or if it needs more light it can automatically brighten the environment. Users can also control these variables manually, effectively creating their own grow “recipes.”
Additionally, each grow will cost about $150 in nutrient cartridges and carbon filter refills. However, co-founder and CEO Yoni Ofir said that eventually the company hopes to drop the price of the actual device and generate its primary revenue from refills (à la Keurig).
Today, the company is opening up preorders of its device. Leaf will be available to users with a medicinal card in any of the 23 states that allow medical marijuana, as well as in the four states where marijuana is currently legal.
However, Leaf is much more than just a mini grow house. The system will monitor everything that your plants need to grow, including light, ventilation, nutrient levels and pH of the soil.
However, as is the case with most new industries, slow regulation hasn’t stopped innovation.
Leaf, a TechCrunch Disrupt SF 2015 Battlefield company, is leading the revolution with its automated “Plug N’ Plant” home growing system. Leaf’s device is a 4′ x 2′ box that will fit two plants, which will yield between 4-5 ounces of weed.
This is all controlled from Leaf’s iPhone app, which will also serve as a social network for users to exchange recipes and share videos of their plants.