How to create talking plants

Learn how to create talking plants

talking plants with the touch board microcontroller

In this tutorial, we’re going to show you how to create talking plants. When you approach the plant with your hand, you can hear a voice message. This can be instructions on how to take care of it or just information about the plant. For example, we have created little instructions that tell the listener how much water the plant needs. This is a great project to make with the Touch Board Starter Kit. We’ve used the Touch Board for this project, but alternatively, you can also use the Pi Cap.

Materials To begin you will need:

Touch Board
crocodile clips
recording device

Step 1 Set-up Touch Board and upload code

If you haven’t set up your Touch Board yet then you need to so by following the set-up tutorial.

For this tutorial, we are going to use the “Proximity_MP3” code. You can find it under File->Sketchbook->Touch Board Examples.

Step 2 Record voice messages

The next step is to record the voice message that you want for each plant. You can do this with your smartphone or a different recording device. Once you’re happy with the recording, upload it to your computer.

Step 3 Upload voice messages to Touch Board

With the recordings on your computer, you need to upload them to the Touch Board. To see how to upload the tracks to the Touch Board, look at our Changing the MP3s on the Micro SD Card tutorial. Remember which electrode is going to play which voice message!

Step 4 Connect Touch Board to plants

Using the crocodile clips, connect the Touch Board to the plant. Attach one end to the electrode on the Touch Board that plays the corresponding track and the other end to the plant. Be careful: The crocodile clips are strong and can take a bite out of your plant, so attach the clip to a part that can withstand the bite. You can also now connect the speakers to the board.

Step 5 Approach plant

When you know plug your Touch Board to power and turn it on, approach the plant with your hand. You can hear the message you have recorded. Your talking plants are ready!

You can attach up to 12 plants to the Touch Board, so get creative!

We’d love to see your creations, please feel free to share your work with us either via email at or via Instagram or Twitter.

Step 6 Troubleshooting

If you are experiencing any problems, please refer to our troubleshooting guide or contact us either via email at or via Instagram or Twitter.

Red, blue and yellow crocodile clips attached to a touch board

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