Garden journal

curly_kate

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So I got a brand-spanking new little notebook, hoping that it will inspire me to actually keep track of what I'm doing in the garden. Generally, I run out of steam around May, when things really pick up in the garden. Is anyone good about keeping track of what they are doing in the garden? What are your secrets to success?
 

vfem

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I always start off with a bang... and fizzle! lol :lol:
 

digitS'

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I thought I did real good with a journal for a few years ('92 to '98). I'd already gardened for quite a long time but felt that I should ratchet it up a little.

All, loose-leaf. I kept the journal on the night stand and would record about a week of information at a time. I wasn't doing it every night, just trying to hit the high points and get things down relative to date, before I forgot them. Honestly, this forgetfulness isn't new :rolleyes:.

Those 7 years of journaling still comes in handy ;)! I refer to it several times each year. Timing. Timing is very important and a little hard to keep track of.

By the 4th year, I began to get a little repetitive and the importance of the journal began to fall away for me. I continue to keep the records of my seed orders and I mapped the garden even longer than I kept up the weekly reporting. It may have been a mistake to have stopped the mapping (see forgetfulness note, above :rolleyes:) I'm still glad I did keep a journal and have it in a file cabinet.

Steve
 

Greenthumb18

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I actually keep a Calendar in my room, and keep track of what and when I plant so I know for the next season what worked or didn't work. I think its much easier to keep track of everything! ;)
 

cwhit590

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vfem said:
I always start off with a bang... and fizzle! lol :lol:
:lol: Same here! I always have high hopes of recording everything each season....doesn't happen!

For the past few years, I've been able to keep track of stuff by just writing it on my office calendar. I wrote down chicken 'events' on the day they occurred (hen went broody, chicks hatched, 1st eggs laid, etc) and did the same for garden 'events' (planting and harvesting dates, growth progress, etc). Like Steve mentioned, it really helps you keep track of timing...I've saved the calendars and it's very helpful looking back on them. Yeah, it's kind of a weird system... but for me, jotting a quick note on the calendar was easier than trying to remember to have a specific journal and write entries...:idunno

Taking pictures could be a way of documenting and journaling garden progress...I've had to go back to some of my garden photos to check the dates and see what was happening at that time in the garden. Sometimes I see plants and things in the pictures that I totally forgot about. For those who dread writing journal entries....a picture is worth 1000 words! :)

Steve, like you mentioned, I keep records of seed orders, some receipts, and even old seed packets to help me remember what varieties I've planted. And....I did make a garden map in the fall of 2010 to help me decide on my 2011 plantings! I'm planning on growing cut flowers for the farmer's market again this year...so this information is handy...I'm trying to be very organized. I really ought to do a more detailed journal now that I think about it....we should all keep each other accountable so we remember!!! :D Who's in?
 

cwhit590

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Greenthumb18 said:
I actually keep a Calendar in my room, and keep track of what and when I plant so I know for the next season what worked or didn't work. I think its much easier to keep track of everything! ;)
...didn't see your post before I posted mine....great minds think alike, eh? :thumbsup
 

April Manier

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I think journaling is great. The biggest thing for me is that I need to keep track of our breeding program and often don't for other things. I have a few things that worked fr me:
1. Paste seed packets in journal pages. Keep notes on that plant next to it. This allows me to see where it's from, all their info, the variety, and tips all neatly typed for me. The dedicated page reminds me to go look at that plant and make notes on it.
2. Make a map. If you make a map of what you have numbering each are with a coorisponding key you can refer in your journal to the areas by number. If you are like me your map grows. Reminding me I REALLY need to update my map!
3. Something is better than nothing. "Do not despise small beginnings." Put someting down, try to be faithful, and use what you get the following year.
4. Use permanant, acid free ink. Pencil will fade over time. Journals accidentally left outside and watered will last with a better pen!

I too take photos. We have trials we are running and it is easier for me that way. The date stamp is handy too, as mentioned.
 

SweetMissDaisy

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I keep a list of what I plant on a spreadsheet and when something gets harvested and brought in the house, it gets weighed and tracked on the sheet. I have found this incredibly helpful when determining what grows well here, and what doesn't. I'm not a native Texan so for me it's ALL been a learning curve.
 

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