How To Create A Personalized Plant Journal

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Fellow gardening nerds: if you haven’t tried making your own yearly plant journal, it might just change your life. Any big project should have a well laid out schedule or design, organized in a way that’s easy for you to reference when the time comes to get to work. A plant journal for Edmonton is especially helpful from January to March when our gardening tasks are minimal, and we’re dreaming up big garden plans for the coming year. Here are the basics of how to put a plant journal together in a way that will help you pull off your ultimate garden goals.   

Creating Your Plant Journal: Design Inspiration

In my opinion, a good journal should be just as much about function as it is aesthetics. Having a dull, dumpy-looking journal isn’t much fun, is it? If you’re gonna be staring at it all the time and working in it, it may as well be nice to look at! Plus, if you tend to misplace your things and often find yourself in a never-ending loop of searching for your keys/phone/wallet, a planner covered in colourful, artsy designs will be much easier to spot. Here are a few ways you can spruce up your plant journal, so it fits your style:

Collage Inside And Out: If you want a journal that’s equal parts planner and vision board, collaging is an absolute must. Grab some old gardening magazines or greenhouse flyers if you have any lying around, and cut out any plants or flowers that you’d like to include. You can pre-plan your layout before applying a layer of mod podge to secure the images in place, or you can wing it and see what cool combinations and colour schemes develop throughout your process. Sometimes a little spontaneity can lead to moments of genius!

Press Dried Flowers: If you have any favourites that you’ve grown yourself, and you feel a pang of sadness as their season comes to an end, you may as well snip a few off and press them into your book to remember! Writing in some labels underneath will help you to identify them all — especially new, hybrid cultivars in unique colours that you want to remember for future years. 

Use Paint Markers: I’m a little obsessed with the metallic Sharpie markers that work on black backgrounds. If you’re into drawing, or just mindlessly doodling flowers and plants on your papers, deck out your book with some cool designs. As junior high-ish it may seem, there’s something so satisfying about covering a book in your personal brand of art. Adult colouring books are already a thing, so why not take it a step further and make your own designs? 

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Garden Calendar by Nifty; Plant-Themed Bullet Journal by AmandaRachLee

The Best Journal Layout

If your planner isn’t well organized, it kind of defeats the purpose of having one. This tried-and-true layout is a pretty straightforward way of keeping your gardening tasks sorted and scheduled:

Organize it month by month. Your gardening tasks are going to keep changing as the year progresses, and different plants will be in different stages. Knowing when and what you need to complete at any given time is going to be a heck of a lot easier when you have a clear timeline laid out. 

Reserve a two-page spread for each plant. In each monthly section, fill out your pages with each plant you’ll have in the garden at that point and everything you need to do that month to keep it green and growing strong. Make a note of where the plant is located in your garden.  

Make subsections on each plant page. Leave a watering section to mark down how often you should water, and note when you’ve completed each watering. Add in another section for fertilizing, and then one big space to fill in any extra notes like pruning, pest control, or other tasks your plant may require during that specific month. 

how to create a personalized plant journal empty spread

Save some extra pages for gathering notes and inspiration. Noticed a cool new cultivar that you want to look into later? Got any wild gardening ideas that tend to pop into your head in the middle of the night? Or maybe you just saw some cool garden layouts online or in a magazine, and want to paste in some clippings for design inspo. Put all that extra stuff down in the miscellaneous section, and give it a glance when you’re back in the planning phase.

Use coloured sticky tabs for easy navigation. This will make it much easier to find exactly what you’re looking for without having to rifle through a hundred pages. Use them to divide up the journal by month, by plant, or however you prefer to stay organized.

Spring is right around the corner, so now is the perfect time to get started on your plant journal. Though we may be a greenhouse, we have plenty of other products and supplies for gardeners in store, so you’re bound to find some good stuff to help you in creating your book. Visit Salisbury and start gathering some inspiration to help pull off your best garden yet! 

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