Agrisaurus makes gardening simple, successful, and fun with tools to help you design, plan, and manage your plot. Read more
This project was successfully funded on October 15, 2012.
About this project
Agrisaurus is a web application to make growing food in small spaces easier, more fun, and more successful. It began in 2010 as a side project we worked on at night after long days building and maintaining intensive food gardens for Farmscape, the largest urban farming venture in California. Agrisaurus will help novice and veteran gardeners alike learn how to get more yield out of a small plot, and it will help you manage your garden ongoing with reminders and advice.
If I plant seven Swiss chard plants, how much yield should I expect? Is that too many? When will it be ready? What's the spacing? How much water does it need? Where should I plant it with regard to my other crops? How do I harvest it?
Why is it yellow now? How often should I fertilize? With what? What's this bug? How do I know when it will be yielding? How do I remember to do so? What's a good yield benchmark? Am I succeeding? And any way, what is Swiss chard? Why does it grow like it does?
These are the kinds of questions we hope to answer for our users.
After Agrisaurus is finished, here's what you won't need to do:
And if you're like most people, you never would have done this anyway. But with Agrisaurus, it will be easy to plan your garden at this level! You, too, can grow food like a pro.
We think small-scale farming is the future. Agrisaurus will make it easier to learn how to garden and also easier to design, plan, and manage your plot throughout the seasons.
Growing food can be quite complicated, there are a lot of variables: temperature, sunlight, days to maturity, crop variety, irrigation, drainage, pests, disease, and on and on. We want to make the effort of gardening more fun, more comprehensible, and come harvest time, more rewarding.
We think gardening books are clunky. Agrisaurus will be like a gardening book, but better, because it will help you learn as you go, it will let you test different plans and see their likely outcomes, and it will give you custom advice based on your zip code and your crop selections.
Inside the app, Agrisaurus lets you create garden beds in your yard. Then you can add crops from the crop catalog, and space them out as you please.
If you want us to recommend the spacing based on our best practices at Farmscape, click the "organize" button and like magic, they will be spaced efficiently, according to their type, height, and required growing space.
Once you have crops picked out, you can plan your planting schedule using our timeline feature.
Agrisaurus will recommend ideal planting dates for your zip code based on climate data and the crop species. You can move planting dates around and see how it will affect your yield projections.
After you've assigned planting dates, Agrisaurus will keep you updated on management.
You can subscribe to alerts by email, or you can check the site regularly. Agrisaurus will warn you about weather threats, remind you about planting dates, and prompt you to perform other tasks as needed.
Why do we need funding?
Web development is costly. So are dinosaur supplies. We're confident we can make a much better product for public launch with a little bit of help from the gardening public.
We've developed a prototype of the app we would like to create. Most core functions are working great, we're very happy with our back-end, the basics of our UI, and we're on track for a spring launch after using the winter to beta-test what we've got.
We could use your support to make a broader and better feature set before the public launch. We have a baseline budget to get the project off the ground, covering some limited improvements, hosting, and bugfixing for the site as it is. Extra money raised will help us expand features like:
- Adding container gardening support
- Nonrectangular polygonal shaped beds
- A bigger and more varied crop catalog including support for perennials, bushes, and trees
- More powerful printing options
- Speed Optimizations
- Better, more thorough horticultural data
Reaching our goal will fund the development hours for this list. We want the app to be comprehensive for gardens of all shapes, sizes, and crop palettes. If you love container gardening, or if you know you want printed planting diagrams and shopping lists, or if you want to grow a broad range of interesting crops including perennials, or if you want to help us keep load times to a minimum, or if you just want to help this app be the best it can be... please donate!
Your support will help us demonstrate to the world that there's demand for an app to make gardening more amazing.
We believe a new era awaits where small farms thrive in every nook and cranny of a city, made more productive by a combination of ancient best practices and all the benefits of the information era. We believe that Agrisaurus can help us create a more crowdsourced food supply, grown yard by yard and rooftop by rooftop.
Risks and challenges
Our project faces the same risks and challenges of any graphically intense web app. We expect a lot of work fine-tuning things, working through browser compatibility issues, load-testing for a rising user base, and so forth. But we have a highly qualified team with experience working on other apps for web and mobile, so we know pretty well what to expect and we're excited to meet the challenge.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
Yes. Here's a link to Farmscape's campaign for mayor, where you can see examples of teeshirts we've made before:
The kits are "IKEA-simple," they build without tools required. The boards fit together on L-joints, and then you slide aluminum pins through pre-drilled holes at each joint. The hardest part is stapling a roll of small-gauge chicken wire to the bottom, necessary only if you face a gopher threat. We can explain the process, or answer any questions about number of boards per final bed shape/size by backchannel.
Pictures of our redwood raised bed kits in use:
We will not ship the raised bed kits internationally. We will ship seed packets only if your country does not have an import restriction on the varieties we have available.
Pledge $3 or more
"Cool idea! I want this to succeed and I'll check it out in the Spring 2013 public launch." You get a shout-out across social media for supporting our vision.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $7 or more
Access to our exclusive Beta Test over the winter 2012 to 2013. You get an early look at the insides of the app and you can be a part of the design process. Your feedback will make Agrisaurus great!Estimated delivery:
Pledge $14 or more
POSTCARD FROM ZEKE!
Access to the Beta and a thank you note from Zeke, our mascot and gardening mentor, together with a randomly selected packet of seeds from Zeke's seed library.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $35 or more
ZEKE'S SEED BUNDLE
Access to the Beta and a Thank You from Zeke, our mascot and gardening mentor, together with five randomly selected seed packets from Zeke's seed library.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $56 or more
ZEKE COLLECTIBLE SHIRT!
Access to the beta test and a commemorative tee-shirt featuring Zeke, our mascot and gardening mentor. It can be assumed he will think of something really witty to say for the shirt printing. The shirt brand will be American Apparel or better, and a trendy, unisex cut.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $350 or more
In addition to a shirt and access to the winter beta, we will send you a Farmscape raised-bed kit with twelve modular redwood boards, enough to build a 4x4x1.5 ft bed or a 4x8x1 ft bed. Other configurations are possible, and you could combine multiple kits to make larger or even multi-level beds.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $630 or more
2x FUND-RAISED BED! In addition to a shirt and access to the winter beta, we will send you TWO Farmscape raised-bed kits with twelve modular redwood boards each, enough to build a 4x12x1.5 ft bed or two 4x8x1 ft beds. Other configurations and combinations are possible, including multilevel beds.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $910 or more
3x FUND-RAISED BED! In addition to a shirt and access to the winter beta, we will send you THREE Farmscape raised-bed kits with twelve modular redwood boards each, enough to build a 4x20x1.5 ft bed or three 4x8x1 ft beds. Other configurations and combinations are possible, including multilevel beds.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $4,900 or more
0 backers Limited (3 left of 3)
HOMESTEAD MAKEOVER! (Consultation & Design):
So you're serious about producing a lot of food at home? We can help you prepare a really good plan. Agrisaurus founders will consult with you remotely about all aspects of your current residence, your lifestyle, and your homesteading ambitions. Using satellite images, we will prepare for you a homestead conceptual design and an implementation plan that best suits your needs, in order to get you started producing intensive food on your property, not to exceed 1/4 acre. Make the right decisions as you lay out your space, select products, and organize your plots. Our advice will be based on what's effective, what's practical, and what's aesthetically appropriate for your property. We have experience designing and consulting on behalf of estates throughout Los Angeles, as well as multifamily, restaurant, and corporate sites. Here's a unique opportunity to work with professionals to design a top-notch farm and complementary landscape for yourself, or your friend who just bought a house.Estimated delivery:
- (21 days)