Daily Garden Records→Technology helps too.

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Daily Garden Records

By alwaysbehindMN
June 10, 2016

How many of you do a daily garden "walk-around" to see what's just come into bloom and what absolutely must be done (or should have been done yesterday), and how do you keep track of all of this?

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Name: Caroline Scott
Calgary (Zone 4a)
Charter ATP Member Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Peonies Lilies Enjoys or suffers cold winters Winter Sowing
Bulbs Region: Canadian Garden Ideas: Master Level Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Jun 9, 2016 8:32 PM CST
When I walk around the yard, I carry my camera, i-Pad or computer.
Then I take pictures. I also use a scrawl journal to write notes after my walk around.
Name: Carl Boro
Milpitas, CA (Zone 10b)
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Photo Contest Winner: 2015
Jun 10, 2016 1:36 AM CST
I'm guessing that you are leaving the junk mail unopened?

And don't just toss it, shred it.
Name: Linda
SE Houston, Tx. (Hobby) (Zone 9a)
"Godspeed, & Good Harvest!"
Region: Texas Vegetable Grower Seed Starter Garden Ideas: Master Level Canning and food preservation Gardens in Buckets
Tip Photographer Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Ferns
Jun 10, 2016 8:15 AM CST
And, after you shred it, add any non-glossy paper to the compost pile. Colored, soy ink is safe. I tip my hat to you.
Name: Deb
Planet Earth (Zone 8b)
Region: Pacific Northwest Plant Identifier Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Jun 10, 2016 9:26 AM CST
I also do sit-abouts -- just relax in an outdoor chair observing a bed with no particular mission. Often something will strike me which I then write down on whatever is handy, then transfer to a master 'to do' list that is ever-evolving (I keep it on my computer but a journal would work as well). Often I note the same things, so add exclamation points to those as 'must do.' Bloom times, time of emergence, and routine maintenance I track in My List, and those are also ever-evolving - e.g., the bloom 'range' may be over 2 months for a 3 week show, depending on weather. I divide each month into 3 parts - early (1-9), mid (10-19) and late (20-31) -- this year almost everything has been one increment earlier than prior years.
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
Name: Dnd
SE Michigan (Zone 6a)
Dog Lover Daylilies Organic Gardener Houseplants Celebrating Gardening: 2015 I helped beta test the first seed swap
Garden Ideas: Level 2
Jun 10, 2016 5:53 PM CST
I use PlantStep to keep me organized with my daylilies and some of my other plants.
Name: Larry
Enterprise, Al. 36330 (Zone 8b)
Composter Daylilies Garden Photography Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Region: Alabama
Jun 10, 2016 8:06 PM CST
I used to use a note pad and pencil when I went to the garden to add comments about the photos I took. Now I have learned to take photos and make a short recording (feature built into the camera) after each photo or group of photos. No more lost pencils, out of sequence notes, etc. Plus it frees up my hands to pull the weeds that so distract me as I walk through the garden.
When I download the photos to the computer, the recordings are also downloaded and it works out great for me.
[Last edited by Seedfork - Jun 10, 2016 8:10 PM (+)]
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Name: Carol
East Texas
Be yourself. Everyone else is taken
Jun 11, 2016 6:39 AM CST
I walk in my garden every morning with my coffee for the pure pleasure of it....the mornings are cooler and most of my plants look so much better than later in the day. It's the one time I can say there are no annoying thoughts or distractions....just me and my flowers, hummingbirds & butterflies. Priceless!
Name: Marie Kapuscinski
New Jersey (Zone 7b)
Jun 11, 2016 8:25 AM CST
I always seem to have a to do list. I take a walk in the mornings . I then make a note as to what to tackle first. Then hope it is not raining on the day I have off.
Name: Deb
Planet Earth (Zone 8b)
Region: Pacific Northwest Plant Identifier Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Jun 11, 2016 8:37 AM CST
My husband laughs at me because I still make a 'to do' list, often with only one or two things on it, even though we are both retired. I love crossing off the simplest of tasks! And given the state of my memory, it does tend to keep me focused.
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
Name: Bonnie Sojourner
Harris Brake Lake, Arkansas (Zone 7a)
Magnolia zone
Region: United States of America Region: Arkansas Master Gardener: Arkansas Irises Plant and/or Seed Trader Moon Gardener
Garden Ideas: Master Level Dragonflies Bulbs Garden Art Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Gardens in Buckets
Jun 12, 2016 10:05 AM CST
Focused...... that is the watchword for me. Each evening as I am sorting the events of the day in my mind I make notes on the computer of what should be done the next day, week and month. Just reminders with the most urgent things first. As I add things that need doing I delete the things I accomplished that day. Used to I would make mental notes and not mislay them. Now I mentally mislay too many things to be productive. I open my notes each morning and start my day. I find I make less trips if I have my chores laid out in a good sequence and less trips about means more energy spent accomplishing my tasks.
Thro' all the tumult and the strife I hear the music ringing; It finds an echo in my soul— How can I keep from singing?
Name: Ed
Georgetown, Tx (Zone 8b)
Cactus and Succulents Container Gardener Sempervivums Houseplants Region: Texas Garden Ideas: Level 1
Jun 12, 2016 1:25 PM CST
I have found for the most part its best to do it when you see the needed task . If its something that must be put off I do wait until I get in the house and write it on page off a sticky pad and stick it to the table where I will have my morning coffee
Plants are like that little ray of sunshine on a rainy day.
Name: Larry
Enterprise, Al. 36330 (Zone 8b)
Composter Daylilies Garden Photography Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier
Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Region: Alabama
Jun 12, 2016 1:52 PM CST
Ahh...if only I had enough time in the day, week or month to do the job when I saw a task that needed to be done. Crying
Name: Treehugger
Hanover Twp, PA (Zone 6a)
Region: United States of America Region: Northeast US Region: Pennsylvania Native Plants and Wildflowers Miniature Gardening Herbs
Enjoys or suffers cold winters Bee Lover Hostas Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Frogs and Toads Hummingbirder
Jun 13, 2016 5:46 AM CST
I've been keeping a journal for over 20 years now. I write down the botanical name when I buy it and from where. I also have divided my garden into areas and mark that down where I have placed my new plant. A spread sheet has helped me keep track of plants by area and date they begin to bloom. When I forget a name it is easy to look up the area and find the name since having "too many plants" can get all mixed up in my mind. Did I just write TOO MANY PLANTS. You gardeners know what I mean. Looking back over my journal or data base in the winter months enlightens me to the fact that I could have taken that trip around the world with all the money I've spent on plants that no longer are with me. Gardening keeps me motivated and the birds, wildlife and insects always peek my interest to learn more. I love nature! I can't act old or lazy there is just too much to do.

Jun 13, 2016 5:01 PM CST
Don't manage to do this every day, but this is how I record:
With my digital camera I take pictures of plants just put in, significant changes of whatever named plant[s] , like first blooms, fruit setting, growth, weather effects, etc. Sometimes just a pretty picture. Sometimes a project, or project area as it develops.
When I come in I load pics to the computer and save to that day. More importantly, I name the plant, project, area, date etc. before I crop, fix and size for my journal use.
Then I go to my "idailydiary" (a free software program that can be used offline) where I include anything and everything I did that day {it reminds me that I can still be useful}, the weather, family or personal stuff, etc. I mean ~ it's my diary! so I put in it what was important that day to me. Last, but not least, I put in each photo taken that day - one at a time - so I can name it and note what is significant about that photo for that day.
All that can be time consuming, especially if I have a dozen or more photos. Most days it is just a few. And it doesn't get done every day.
The hard part is the next step . . . . Eventually I take those photos and place them in in my huge 'plants and gardening' folder that has more sub and sub-sub and sub-sub-sub folders than I can count. Each photo is placed in the folder that is its own or with the folder that is within that variety of plant. There are further organizational things to do, but the hopeful end result is to provide a view of the life and history of each plant or area and how it has managed from year to year.
Since I have 5 acres and have lived here for 36 years there is a lot to cover. Of course, I don't have pictures of all those earlier decades, but doing pretty well this decade !!!
And now I have all the right pictures with the right plant with the right year and season ! That's a whole lot of record keeping !! Which is very good for an old lady that can't garden as heartily I used to.

Jun 18, 2016 9:22 AM CST
Came across this website from a bing search and amazed of the constant activity happening all around in the nation with gardening, although not immediately visible from the yard! Luckily, this thread was asked just in time because I've been keeping logs of everything I do, check it out at backyardlogs.com

So far I have 185 separate logs of all my activity in Central Florida. You can find me there under my nickname charliegato
[Last edited by handwatch - Jun 18, 2016 9:23 AM (+)]
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Name: Brett
(Zone 6a)
Jun 21, 2016 4:51 PM CST
A veg gardener, I do three rounds a day. First I water and inspect. then I weed the onions (the only crop with which I don't use mulching plastic—which has an annoyng tendency to billow in a breeze and lift young plants I've just put out) and finally, in the evening, I put the garden to bed. Just this year I succeeded in using a wordpress blog to record things like weather, to-do lists and progress. I finally managed to make room for it in my daily routine, though the first year I was a miserable failure at keeping up. I'd be using a camera as well, but the battery contacts on mine totally corroded away. I will occasionally get out a hundred foot extension cord and use it for the camera, but that's an awful bother. A decent camcorder is on my wishlist. If you want to see what can be done with video, just check out the thiving community of British allotmenteers on YouTube. They're marvelous.
[Last edited by papicek - Jun 21, 2016 4:52 PM (+)]
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Aug 19, 2017 10:21 PM CST
Hi all, if anyone is interested, we have built a web app that I think may be useful for at least the journal/record keeping aspects that people have discussed here. It uses satellite imagery and allows you to use your own map image if you have access to a drone. The mapping capabilities doesn't allow you to see exact distance of your property as such however it does give you a visual view on how much space you have to plant and where the best place to put plants would be.

This app can be used on your phone or tablet whilst in the garden to record locations, dates, activities, observations, photos and weather information like rainfall and frost dates.

There is lots in the pipeline (planting calendars, companion planting, integration with the Netatmo weather station and the Edyn soil sensor and much more) but it is very usable as is and over the last several years there has barely been a day when I haven't used it myself in my own garden.

If anyone is interested, feel free to check it out at www.planmy.garden, you can start a 14 day trial for free. We would love to hear what you think.

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