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Author Topic: First plant sound (an orchid leaf)  (Read 980 times)

Offline pelgrim

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First plant sound (an orchid leaf)
« on: May 27, 2016, 12:41:11 PM »
After 3 days of battle with linux (the solution is so simple once you know it)
and using my skin as a plant, got everything to work.

And to conclude the day, my first "victim" was an ochid (Phalaenopsis)
Put the pads on start and end of a leaf, cranked up the potentiometer and wow,
that plant really has more music in it then I have !

That lasted for about 10 - 20 seconds, after that I guess I used up all the available electrons out of that leaf (or plant).
But I'm so happy, I finally have the result I was after, it's a perfect way to conclude the day !

Offline sam

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Re: First plant sound (an orchid leaf)
« Reply #1 on: May 28, 2016, 05:00:34 PM »
I am so glad that it worked!

Orchids are ... quite dynamic organisms.  I am certain that the reactions which you get from the Orchid will be unique.

Sounds like you had the Threshold knob turned too high, when freshly attached to a plant the Sprout will usually detect active data for a few seconds and then sometimes the signal will 'flatline'.  I suggest patience with the plant, while the voltage of the Sprout and the currents which we are detecting should be un-noticeable to the plant - the big sticky trodes are quite noticeable!

I like to say that it 'takes a few minutes for the plant to get used to be connected', and in my experience this is true.  After working with a plant over a series of sessions, I have seen the plant 'get used to' the trodes and provide active signal right away.  Also leaving the trodes on the plant leaf for a few hours/days is a good way for the plant to 'forget' that they are there.  I mean, if I stuck some sticky trodes on you, you'd probably be mad and not talk to me for a bit!

As a note, we are not 'extracting' power/energy/electrons from the plant, we are applying a very small voltage and then measuring fluctuations in that current.  It's kinda like how much power the plant 'sucks up'/'burns off', measured over microsecond intervals, but any engineer would think that is a poor definition for a resistor.

Offline pelgrim

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Re: First plant sound (an orchid leaf)
« Reply #2 on: May 29, 2016, 04:58:14 AM »
That is an eye opener: the probes actualy "feed" some voltage.

So it's more measuring how much resistance there is in the plant and how that changes over a period of time.
Just a stupid question to make sure:
the potentiometer is only there for processing the signal that comes back from the plant,
it has no effect on how much voltage is fed to the plant ?

I was planning to use sprout on a big vine plant I have in the garden, it has branches of over 10 m length parallel to each other.
Putting the probes at the end of 2 different branches, makes the signal to cross 20 meters of plant.
I guess that is a bit over ambitious ?

I also was playing with the idea of making some custom probe lines,
the used audio jack and probe attachments are easy enough to find in an electronics store.
But now I'm doubting if that is a good idea.
What is the max length between the 2 probes you have tried on a plant, measuring the path the signal has to go through the plant of course.

The orchid I used for my tryout is one of the small plants I have here,
most of them are a lot bigger, and also don't grow that lazy like the orchid.