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Planting plans and keeping track of your plant names

4 years ago, we moved into our house.  I have gone about clearing and replantings all the flowerbeds. 

When I first did the main flowerbed, I drew up a planting plan in a notebook with grid paper, However that flowerbed is 25m long and I have a 40m long flowerbed, down the length of the garden. which as I'm sure you can imagine is rather hard to fit onto some notepad grid paper in any detail.

I've been adding more and more plants and thought it is time to update the planting plan but not sure where to start so that I can capture everything.  Plus how do you capture seasonal plants on a planting plan, for example in spring I have bluebells and forget me nots and then in the summer something else will grow up through it.

I have a notebook where I try and list the plants when I buy them and put in a rough idea of where I planted them, but I'm sure I've missed some plants off.

So basically how do you all keep track of your plants and plant names and where you've planted them.

Also I'm not sure I've helped myself as I tend to buy 1 of a plant, to see if it survives in my dry sandy soil, then if it does I will buy more of them.  I'm gradually getting the idea that a mass of one plant looks a lot nicer, but haven't wanted to plant a mass of one plant for it not to thrive.  Its all about learning what works and what doesn't.  Therefore this makes it harder to keep track on a plan as so many different plants.

Any advice on how you've done your planting plans and keep track of plants gratefully received. 

thank you.



  • That's why I tend to stick to shrubs and conifers, or evergreen stuff. It's always there and I know them! However, group plantings make life a little easier.  Good labelling, neat and tucked away. I still use white plastic labels and pencil!  The metal labels, on which the scriber creates an impression,work well, too. And they're not in your face.


  • Peanuts3Peanuts3 Posts: 759

    that's a good idea, however we had an abundance of squirrels who love to pull out all name labels when I've put them in. ...

  • I didn't fully answer, did I, failing to address the 'plan' bit. I don't do them!  I plan so many other gardens that doing one for my own would be too much, I'm afraid.  However, breaking up the plan into sections, or even making notes as you plant with a simple grid reference might work?  A4 - Pennisetum alopecuroides 'Hameln' x 2, C3 - Verbena bonariensis x 3, etc?  

    Re the squirrels, hmm, can't address that one.  Entertaining though they might be, elsewhere, they're a flippin' nuisance in the wrong place, I agree.


  • Bright starBright star Wrea GreenPosts: 1,021

    I take photographs regularly through the growing season, I find this helps me. I have a garden file on my iPad in the photos section so that I can refer back to it

    Life's tragedy is that we get old too soon and wise too late.

  • nutcutletnutcutlet PeterboroughPosts: 26,160

    I've got a list, but there are gaps in it. Some of the plants that are on it died or were dumped years ago.

    Most plant names are in my head, but there are gaps there too, more gaps than there used to be. 

    No plan, too complicated for me

    Last edited: 16 October 2016 13:51:45

  • PosyPosy Isle of Wight.Posts: 2,767

    Hollow laughter here! I used to do that sort of thing. Some of the plants died, some went rampant, some seeded from elsewhere and all the labels were moved by blackbirds, foxes, cats, badgers and moles. These days I look at a plant and say ' What the hell's that?' OK, so it doesn't much resemble the stuff you see on Gardeners' World, but I have preserved my sanity - well, a bit of it....

  • cornellycornelly Posts: 959

    Twenty four years ago when we first planted out our garden, after removing large glasshouses, we knew pretty well each plant, now I am afraid we know some, but enjoy what we have, and look forward in each season to see what appears.

  • CloggieCloggie Posts: 1,353

    I wing it.  I have a box of plant labels in the shed so I can go back to it if one is failing but I usually buy a plant I like the look of, research it and find a place it will like.

    The books say this is not the right approach and they're probably right but I do enjoy myself! image

  • Daisy33Daisy33 LondonPosts: 1,031

    I have asked Santa for a "Plant Book/Diary" that I can keep a record of plants/seeds purchased, a calendar of things to do, what to expect etc but he is having difficulty finding one.

    Does anyone here have such a thing and would know where to find one? At the moment I am just writing everything in a notebook and it's getting a bit muddled.

  • Busy-LizzieBusy-Lizzie Posts: 16,773

    I had a plan when I started in 1991 but I've lost it. I have a garden note book to write down what needs changing or moving. Over the years it would have been too complicated to keep up with the plan. I take photos regularly through the year.

    Dordogne and Norfolk
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