hand holding orange colored pencil coloring on a landscape layout drawing for post titled Top 5 Reasons for Creating a Garden Journal

hand holding orange colored pencil coloring on a landscape layout drawing for post titled Top 5 Reasons for Creating a Garden Journal

Do you daydream over seed catalogs and can't wait to get your hands in the dirt? 

Are you tempted to buy plants even if you don’t have anywhere to plant them?
Even with snow on the ground, are you distracted by seed displays appearing in stores?

That’s me!

There’s definitely a season for planting, but it’s never too early to start dreaming. In fact, it’s a perfect time to start your garden journal.

Why a garden journal?

There are so many benefits! 

Garden journals are the next best thing to being out in the garden, digging in the dirt, smelling the fresh air, and watching things grow. They’re a place where you can create, dream, visualize, play, and document everything you want from your idea of a garden experience.

Just think about what your garden will look like.  Even if it’s make-believe, thinking about it will stimulate your brain and bring you many of the pleasures of a garden experience.

older woman sitting outside near a garden in a lawn chair with her journal for post titled Top 5 Reasons for Creating a Garden Journal

Here are 5 reasons for creating a garden journal!

1. It breaks the winter blahs and gets a mental jumpstart on spring!

Imagining possibilities and looking at colorful blooms brightens your spirit.

Visualizing beautiful things growing and bountiful harvests activates your brain. It’s so powerful that you reap the benefits of your garden even while you're sitting snuggled inside by the winter fire!

*For more about this topic, check out Visualize Your Dreams with Vision Board Journal Pages!

seed catalog plant list and layout for post titled Top 5 Reasons for Creating a Garden Journal

2. It organizes your gardening and landscaping needs while you process ideas and layout.

Take a look at your space:
  • Where’s the best sunlight, moisture levels, and wind protection?
  • What purpose do you want your garden to serve? Do you want it to fit in your window, attract birds, bees, or butterflies, or produce food for your family?
  • What are your natural paths across and around your yard?
  • Where do you like to sit to relax and look at your yard?
These are all questions you subconsciously think about but probably haven't put on paper.  What's nice is these questions can be processed even when you can't be out enjoying your yard and garden.  So, how perfect to get a little of that garden feeling through your journal entries as you stir memories and imagine all that's possible!

several house plant labels and markers for post titled Top 5 Reasons for Creating a Garden Journal

3. Excellent record keepers for dates, times, experiences, and annual reminders.

When to prune? When to water? When to harvest? 

It’s hard to remember which tomato varieties you liked and which ones you’d rather not plant again. Take notes, save your seed packets, and set reminders!

Creating a timeline is a big part of garden preparation and care. Other important dates? Greenhouse openings and annual sales!

plant laying on a garden journal next to a drawing of that plant and 3 colored pencils for post titled Top 5 Reasons for Creating a Garden Journal

4. Garden journals are opportunities to get creative!

Don’t feel like an artist? No problem!
  • You don’t have to draw, paint, or doodle. Garden journals adapt to fit your needs and interests. 
  • Cut out magazine pictures, use the images from your seed packets, or draw imaginary yards and layouts if you have to, but relax, play, and create!
Are you missing opportunities to get artsy? Great!
  • Get out your supplies and play! It’s loads of fun and flexible for any medium. 
  • Take your sketchbook out in to the garden. 
  • Take your camera to the local greenhouses or arboretum!
Prefer laying out hardscapes? Wonderful!  
  • Make sure your journal has graphing and tracing paper!
  • It’s fun to do overlays on large printed photos of your home. You can play with ideas without spending a dime or digging any holes! Plan benches, pergolas, trellises, fences, walking paths, small bed plantings, and mature bushes or trees.
Make your garden a destination.
  • Diagram your yard or use your house plans to get an accurate flow to your yard use, the water, and available sun. 
  • Ever used Feng Shui help?  Do a little reading to see how they deal with flow and placement.  You might be surprised how your gut instincts fit the Feng Shui philosophy.
More of a list person? Great!
  • Lined paper or notebooks of any size are all you need to get started! 
  • Create charts and calendar layouts if you prefer planting by the moon, astrological indicators, or the Almanac.
garden journal laying open with writing and a plant drawing sitting on a table of misc plant papers for post titled Top 5 Reasons for Creating a Garden Journal

5. Garden journals can save you money! 

If you don't plan, you tend to buy too much, ending up with multiple packages of the same seeds. 

It’s the same philosophy as eating before you grocery shop. 
  • Planning cuts down on impulse buying and senseless purchases. If you know you only have one tiny spot open for a new perennial, you can focus on one particular specimen plant instead of being distracted by the look or discounts on multiples.
  • SALES! Most of our trees and scrubs were purchased at a considerable discount in the fall, with plenty of time to get established before winter. We had all summer to plan and prepare!
  • BONUS benefit! Saving your information and receipts in an envelope in your journal could save you big money. Many greenhouses have a refund policy for their plants and trees that don’t survive. $$$
Plant notes on yellow note paper, house diagram, house photo, and tracing paper layout plan for post titled  Top 5 Reasons for Creating a Garden Journal

You see? 

Garden journals have numerous benefits and options to fit any interest and learning style! Use whatever creative technique fits your needs and personality.  Remember, whether your garden is massive or minuscule–existing or your dream garden–a gardening journal can be relaxing, enjoyable, and helpful!

If you also like house plants, enjoy this post:  How House Plants Can Enhance Your Journaling Experience.

Interested in making your own garden journal? Watch for our next DIY journal project coming soon!

Have you ever created a garden journal? What have been the biggest rewards for you?


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