Breaking things down into manageable parts, or do I have too much time on my hands?

New Rachio 3 user, so far not sure why I spent so much time on my previous controllers, I like the Rachio 3 good job on the setup btw.

While I have a “lot”, I see it as a collection of zones. They are not all the same even to my untrained eye.

Instead of rain sensors, PWS, UV measurements etc, I prefer to find a way to leverage a well done local weather analysis feature, and Rachio has one that is great imho, along with a few wireless moisture sensors I picked up to use as a reference.

When I always ask, what problem are you trying to solve? Do root cause analysis etc…

I want to “calibrate” zone by zone, via either visually observed, soil moisture measured, or both. A mini hobby sure which I like, also I don’t know enough to be an expert, and I likely “know” too much incorrect information to ever unlearn enough to be effective on my own.

I want set it and kind of forget it apart from some easy tweaking, since I always yearn to delve in there and have an investment of my time, initiative, and ingenuity which equates to me being vested and then highly appreciative of the system.

My soil moisture sensors live out in my zones. I can move them as they are wireless. They are simply one piece of data.

If one zone shows 32% when another shows 16%, that tells me one is watered more, or one is watered less, not sure exactly if that represents too much or too little as I lack a common language to asses and articulate that until I can gather empirical data from raising one and assessing, or lowering one etc.

I do move the sensors around to sample and get a range zone by zone once in a while especially now. I have another zone, during this period in which on average shows 25%. Mostly same soil, grass, nozzle type and coverage, oddly the 25 area gets the most sun by far, with 16 quite a bit less, then 32 less still. Also, the 25 and 32 are somewhat or entirely over my leeching field.

Perhaps part of the questioning per zone, over leeching field, partially, default no. Actually I have no idea if leeching fields impact moisture content other than my current backyard guesswork, my assumption has always been that it does…

In the abstract, with a simple guide, visual observations could also be used over time to provide another additional element for Rachio to adjust watering with. So I tell Rachio somehow Zone 2 matches visual aid for dryness picture 2, or overwatering reference x. Rachio adjusts and over time it is either better worse or keep the 1 or more adjustment(s) in a list for that zone.

I would propose an element of setup per zone for leeching field if that matters, remember most of us now flocking into this space are not botanists and while we appreciate learning, I want to just help dial it in and then set it and let it go from there and say, I helped.

So for many of us, I think the following would be wonderful in an “Audit” type of function and would be fun and ideally helpful.

  1. advanced: a means of inputting any available measured soil moisture values etc per zone in a snapshot date stamped audit like function
  2. moderate/advanced: visual observational zone based audit snapshot based on parameters you publish maybe in some pictures
  3. easy: a way for me to just say a zone is diverging from expectations, need more/less water/time, need more/less often