Message from the publisher
When I purchased our current home I was overcome with the desire to fill it with gardens. Over the years I have learned that it takes an incredible amount of time and forethought to achieve my dream. I also needed to manage my time if I wanted gardens that looked beautiful with plants that thrived.
The most important lesson I have learned is to keep a journal. With smartphones and digital cameras you can always take a photo record but I still like to keep my written notes to refer to and complement my photos. You can ‘geek out’ like I do by purchasing pretty floral books and creating sketches of your gardens or just snap photos with your phone and keep them in a file with a spreadsheet to fill out for your records; either way find a method that is enjoyable for you.
Journals help you to remember what you have bought, planted and where you placed or moved plants from year to year. I find it extremely useful to have a record to remind me what's planted where so I don't dig it up the following spring. If you have plans you would like to implement in your garden, short or long term goals, this is the ideal place to record these ideas too.
They are especially helpful with vegetable garden planning to ensure that you rotate crops. Photos and notes will help you to remember which plants didn’t thrive in a particular area and which over produced in fruit or blooms. You can record pest and disease problems to keep an eye out for any re-occurrance the following year. Take notes on which plants need to be divided or moved, or which you want to donate to a local plant swap. Recording things like rainfall and fertilization will also help you to understand why particular years may have been better or more challenging.
Keeping a record of your garden will help you to become a better gardener, even if you only have a small area. It serves as a wonderful reminder of your successes and insight into what may have gone wrong. However you choose to do it, I encourage you to start your own gardening journal and hope you enjoy it as much as you enjoy your garden.