Sunday, February 1, 2009

The Garden Journal

Tired of this endless winter? Longing to feel warm earth in your hands, hear that clear spring birdsong and smell those first flowers? Dream on; we're still a couple of months from all that.

But there is something you can do to hasten spring, at least in part. Start a garden journal. Pick a blank book of any type, and jot down your gardening thoughts on a daily or weekly basis. Tell your journal what you plan to grow come spring, and where you plan to make your purchases. Draw a diagram of your plot, make a list of your garden wishes. Commit to paper the name of that great gardening book you mean to read this year. Record the warming temperatures and the increasing day lengths.

It's all grist for the gardening mill. It will all help the endless frozen days to pass. I've kept garden journals for over 20 years, and it's endlessly fascinating to review their contents. In fact, that's my favorite pasttime when snow shuts down our community. I dig out my journals and open them at random, amazed to read how I dealt with the deer in '86, or the name of that (I thought!) lost-to-memory iris from the middle '90's, or how I longed for time to garden when my children were small and oh! so demanding.

My journals are kept on a shelf in the family room with my gardening books. I used to just pile them one on the other, but now I line them up by years, so as to have better access. I also record the year on their spine, and start a new journal each January, no matter how much space might be left in the old one.

Some of the lists I keep in my journals are: the Perennial Plants of the last 20 years; pronunciation guides to difficult names; list of items I need to purchase; list of tasks to complete this gardening year; and transplant ideas.

Keeping a garden journal. Another chapter in the gardening life.


  1. Happy Birthday, Colleen

  2. There are juncos and goldfinches at the rear feeder.

  3. Hi Colleen, thanks for the great super bowl experience! love, S

  4. You will be tickled to learn that there was a FLOCK of robins hanging out in Watertown on Saturday, Jan31. They were vigorous and plump! A fellow dog walker said he saw a robin in his yard on your about that for great news!