Trial in the village

Our citizen science project on garden microclimates (see this post) is slowly taking up speed. For now, it is trials-trials-trials, making sure all the gaps and holes are filled and all the questions are answered, before we launch the full 5000-logger strong program next summer.

While the first trials started simply in my own garden, we now had a nice little expansion: our neighbours were intrigued by the funny little mushroom in our front yard, and said they would love to have one too. Why not, I thought, the global pandemic is keeping all my loggers locked indoors for now anyway! So out we went: we mobilised the street’s WhatsApp group, and brought mushrooms and instructions to everybodies doorsteps. Now the neighbourhood is filled with garden daggers in a first example of what this citizen science project can do!

Garden loggers

Our little white mushrooms spread across our own garden, and the whole ‘Saliestraat’ street. 

This first ‘microcosm’ of the citizen science project we want to roll out across the whole of Flanders already thought us a lot: cats and dogs like playing with the little top hats of our mushrooms, for example, and lawn mowers are no friends of the bottom shield. People do find them very intriguing, though, and happily welcome the intruder in their lawns. And robust as they are, all of them did survive for now.

And then there is the data, of course, which is of course the best part! Just imagine this graph below rolling in from 5000 gardens across the region, telling us everything one wants to know about what’s driving our garden microclimates, and if and how can improve this ourselves, to make them a better place for humans and nature.

Example

Example of heat (at the soil surface) and drought measurements in my own garden, revealing an extraordinary dry and warm spring. 

For now, we’ll leave it at this first impression. We’ll leave detailed analyses of all the cool insights that are in their for later, when our project truly takes off!

 

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1 Response to Trial in the village

  1. Saurab says:

    This sounds like a really cool project. Can’t wait for the results!

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