|Time to dust off your garden journal or start a new one!|
They take notes on what blooms when, what the weather is like, what plant combinations they like and which ones they do not. They makes lists of what they need to remember to change in the spring, in the summer, or the fall. And then they read them, do what they recorded, and cross them off!
And this is the moment to start: as flowers begin to bloom!
In the book, The Winterthur Gardens, Denise Magnani says that Henry Francis du Pont, Winterthur's creator, "kept notebooks of all sizes on the garden alone. The most important, in terms of his personal aesthetic development and the creation of the garden, contain sequence-of-bloom lists. The first entry, dated February 1, 1902, reads simply, 'Scilla'... By the 1930's, he was keeping track of thousands of plants" (pg 78).
Just one step, or rather one flower, at a time! That should encourage us gardeners to persevere in this important practice in the art of gardening - keeping notes on our gardens.
The English Garden magazine did a beautiful spread in the fall on Great Dixter and its head gardener, Fergus Garret. When asked for gardening tips, Fergus said, "A gardener's notebook is much underestimated. Don't make notes only on good plants and good combinations, but also look for ways of editing your garden. I always put an asterisk on improvements to be made... Having observed and then noted improvements, make sure that you go through your notebook and put words into action. Once done, cross then off - this gives great satisfaction... Using your eyes and being critical is vital to success" (pg 28, Issue 94 for North America).
|Notes of my seed list and purchases in March 2011.|
Last fall I outlined how I use a date book as a garden journal. That method has worked well for me, but of course there are many other ways to do it!
Tech savvy people might to use Evernote to store random observations, or Trello to make your task lists right on your smart phone as you walk around the garden.
Or a $1 notepad from the corner store will do. Just start! When you stop for milk this week, pick up a notebook. You too can start like H. F. du Pont did so many years ago...
February 1, 1902: Scilla
|Some pretty datebooks that I love to use for my note taking. They are available on Amazon!|