Is Keeping a Garden Journal Worth the Time?

In the Garden Sue Apr 18, 2023
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garden journal

Disclosure: Some of the links in this article may be affiliate links, which can provide compensation to me at no cost to you if you decide to purchase.  

Does Keeping a Gardening Journal help you Plan, Save Money and Improve the Performance and Overall Look of the Garden?


Planning is one of the most important parts of a successful flower or vegetable garden, not to mention the time and money it may save you. Each new season in the garden can seem overwhelming to the beginner and avid gardener. Taking the time to plan will help you be successful. Using a garden planner or garden log book may assist you in the garden plan, organizational details, and help you rate the performance and growth in your garden, and, of course, Save Money!


Over the years I have made plans, kept a monthly calendar of what I planted and how they yielded with my flowers and vegetables. I had lots of papers everywhere! It was a mess that I eventually tried to kept in a file, halfway keeping them organized. I felt as if I was constantly fumbling through papers. Last year I put all me efforts into making a garden Journal or planner workbook, so everything stays in one place and has a little more organization than in the past. 


Here are the ones I published and are available on Amazon:

Planning starts for me in January. I first look over what worked and didn’t work from the year before. I take a seed inventory and start planning the design of my two 16x16 ft raised beds and four 4x8 beds. I plant half cut flowers and half vegetable gardens.  I will plan out these gardens on grids that I included in my planner. I do this in pencil because I want to do a couple scenarios to visualize the layout and decide which one will be the most aesthetically pleasing. Gardening is really art. My sister always tells me that I have a garden to look pretty and she has one for quantity of harvest.  Gardens are meant for different things in our family. 


Although it can be tempting to run to the garden center for plants that catch your eye, you may end up with too much of one thing and not enough of another. The plan will help guide you, to keep focused, and stick with the plan. Just like a list to the grocery store, the garden planner will keep your budget in check and save you MONEY in the long run.


 Planning on the grid will align with how much seed I need to buy or get for free at the local Master gardener seed swap. I keep my seeds in a small file box that are labeled with the months of the year February to August. I will start looking at the back of the seed envelope to figure out when I can plant them either indoors or sow outdoors, then I can file them accordingly as to the corresponding month.  


I get a soil test in March, so I only buy the fertilizer and nutrients the soil needs. This cuts down my spending on supplies and supplements that my soil really didn’t need.   March is when (in zone7B) I plant most of my seeds indoors under growlights.  Let the Fun begin!!


By April I have all my seedlings in the greenhouse taking in the sun and growing like a weed. I continue to make notations in the planner to log the progress of my germination and seedling growth. By Mother’s Day in Zone 7B, it is very safe to plant everything outdoors. This is where the fun begins. I already have my grids done so I know where every plant is going, and I can enjoy to creativity of the planned garden that was well thought out earlier in the year.


In June I am enjoying seeing the plants thrive and grow noting in my garden journal what is thriving and what is a fail.  July and August bring on the harvest and many flower arrangements to give friends and family, not to mention all the vegetables and nutritious dinners that ensue. 


 The garden! It’s the perfect combination of being creative with the planning, organization (which I love) and reaping the harvests of both the flowers and vegetables.  If you decide to start journaling, planning and experimenting with different planting techniques or varieties, you will reap the benefits personally and through your GARDEN!


Here are the ones I published and are available on Amazon:


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Disclosure:  Some of the links in this article may be affiliate links, which can provide compensation to me at no cost to you if you decide to purchase.