For the Record: Garden Note-Taking Made Easy

For the Record: Garden Note-Taking Made Easy

I garden in public places, and I want interested gardeners to have access to the plant names, so I always place the plant tags in the gardens. Unfortunately, the tags would wander off and come spring I would be at a loss as to what was starting to emerge in the garden. Then I got smart. I started taking pictures of the plants with the tags—so when the tags disappear, I still have a record of the plants’ names.

Your camera may be the best record-keeping tool you have at your disposal. Once a month take pictures of your gardens from the same spot. When you review these images you will be able to evaluate your garden on:

  • What is blooming
  • Where additional blooming plants should be added
  • Blank spots
  • Which plants need more or less water
  • Where height, texture or a new shape should be introduced to the gardens
  • Color: Is you garden monochromatic? Do you need to add more color with flowers, foliage or bark?

Take pictures of plants with the plant tags. You will thank yourself next spring when you are wondering what is starting to emerge in the warming soil.

Sit and be still for an hour. Being able to sit and enjoy the garden and not start weeding, pinching or deadheading is no small task, I’ll admit. But sitting in the garden for an hour, at different times of the day, will provide you with invaluable information about your garden.

  • What birds do you hear? Or, are you hearing any birds?
  • Do you hear and see pollinators?
  • Do you have a food source for the birds and other creatures?
  • Are the birds and pollinators using your water source?
  • Do you have a water source?
  • Do you have safe places for birds to sit and nest?Observation is key in identifying where you can improve upon your garden.

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