Last year I moved into an apartment complex with little patches of earth used for gardens. Anyone who likes can use the space to grow something of their choice, edible or decorative. I have never had a garden before and up until this point it has been too cold to begin in my state. But now the weather is warm and I am planning to get started on my very first planting season.
Only one problem: I know nothing about gardening. I can barely keep a houseplant alive and in many cases I haven’t. My thumb has never been green, but more the pulsing black of death. Alright, so I am being dramatic, but that still leave me without a clue as to what I am doing. Thankfully, I have something my parents did not…the Internet.
Ah, the trusty web; what would I do without it? Probably destroy my chance at a garden for one thing. If you are like me, or you are an expert but want a little bit of help, check out these awesome sites I found in my research.
A great website for planning out your garden, it allows for a full visual of what your chosen design would look like in four different seasons. You simply launch it in your browser or install the program onto your desktop, upload a photo of your garden or space and give them the climate and soil conditions present there. They will then give you the chance to build your ideal garden while suggesting the best plants for your location. They have a great gallery of other people’s designs, which includes search by tags to make it easier.
Sometimes a garden has already been started, or natural plant life is there. If you want to know what those plants are before you start putting in your own, check out My Plant ID. It is a pretty basic program but very useful. You can find a plant based on location and look, and help identify other plants that are a mystery. There are 67 currently identified and 127 waiting for a name. Can you help identify some of them?
This one I have mixed feelings about. The idea and layout are great; basically you have an areal view in a blueprint format that lets you put plants of different kinds in patterns that you can then use when you are planting. It is rather nice as it is on a grid and so gives you some space relations that will make it harder to overplant or crowd your garden.
I love this site. Basically, it is social networking for gardeners. It allows you to register an account and then build a profile for free with their service. You can then connect with people of all levels of experience, see photos, swap tips and get help. You can even log your progress so others can see how your plants are growing. It is a fairly large site with tons to offer, so I would highly recommend it.
Are you aware of any other free online tools to help with one’s gardening? Please share them in the comments!
Annie is a frugal writer, newbie gardener and travel blogger at Timeshare Secrets, the lifestyle blog sharing best traveling resources and tips.