Width of planting beds

One question I asked Rory in an email was about scaling up the area the Farmbot could cover. See that 1.0 is now concentrating on initial set size for pre-orders, so I will wait for next version. One thing I’d like to mention (coming from manual market garden world) is that my beds are a maximum of 700mm wide by 50m. This is so I can straddle them and not compact the soil in the bed as I work. It also means that any amendments - compost, soil, mulch and any tilling are always within reach from the sides of the beds - and are able to be added with ease. A wide bed makes doing any of these things harder, and harvesting almost impossible unless you stand on the bed to get to the middle. So long, skinny beds with long skinny tracks would work just fine. Wish I had the engineering brain to make a contribution with!

I agree but I can go up to 1 meter (I’m not a metric guy. lol).
I’d like to tag onto this question. How tall can the robot go?
Can you grow corn and other tall crops??

I did see somewhere that there is consideration for taller crops happening for future FarmBot versions. I do much more growing at the shorter end of the spectrum - salad leaves and microgreens and have my eye on a hand harvester from Johnny’s Seeds. As I’m not as young as I used to be, the only thing that stops me from buying it is that it looks like it would kill my back working at the angle it does. I think it would be a perfect addition to the FarmBot, as it could use the rails for carriage. http://www.johnnyseeds.com/p-6617-42-greens-harvester.aspx

@MalmsburyMaven thanks for this post! The current kits can be sized to be narrower (you just have to optionally cut down the size of the main gantry beam and the driveshaft). And yes, we’re working on devices that can scale up to 12m in length. Beyond that and it becomes difficult to pull all the wiring and tubing. Though perhaps with different hardware it could be accomplished to scale up to 50m!


I’m having lots of ‘Minority Report-type’ visions of my future greenhouses…
You’ve probably already thought of this, but for long skinny beds - what would happen if the water was available to the Bot installed like a long piece of polypipe on the inside edge of a garden bed? As the Bot comes down the bed, it could tap into one of a number of one-way valves in the polypipe line that would let water flow in at the position the Bot is at? Kind of like having a drip line installed that the Bot accesses as it moves along. I’ll stop wondering out loud now and watch and wait…

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That’s a neat idea! I had a similar idea with using a trough of water along the bed that FarmBot could suck water from. It could even be a pipe with openings at certain locations. All possible with more testing :slight_smile:

Just registered an account to say that sounds like a very bad idea to me. Lots of complexity in a pipe with valves or a part to suck water up. By far the simplest way to accomplish hoseless water feeding is with a trough or open half-pipe raised above the level of the bed. Then a simple single pipe attaches to the robot. A gravity feed will automatically siphon the water to where its needed. Much simpler!

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