As a chronic apartment dweller, I haven’t been the custodian of a lawn for 25 years – and I can’t say I miss them much. But this new cloud-based gadget I’ve been testing on a borrowed London lawn is so impressive it could almost get me back into gardening. It’s an app‑controlled watering device that enables you, using a phone, to give your garden, roof terrace or greenhouse a well-timed soaking from your desk or holiday beach.
The Hozelock Cloud Controller (you can see what they’re doing with that clever name) can be used with sprinklers or its Easy Drip watering system, which administers smaller amounts of water than a full-on drenching. The highly adaptable system uses meteorological data to help gauge when your greenery needs a drink, but I’d be strongly inclined to go a little off-piste and use the Hozelock Cloud Controller with Dark Sky, a £2.99 best-in-class weather app I discovered recently. It gives an uncannily accurate (in my experience), hyperlocalised and detailed weather forecast for almost anywhere. You really could be on a beach in the Bahamas checking the rainfall over the next few hours back in a specific street anywhere you choose.