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Garden Journal (and calendar) helpful to tracking success

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A Garden Journal from the MU Extension Service will help you gather information helpful to both beginning gardeners and the most experienced.

Three horticulture specialists with University of Missouri Extension have created an outstanding publication that “From Seed to Harvest and Beyond: Garden Journal and Calendar” to help both beginners and experienced gardeners.

Donna Aufdenberg, Sarah Denkler and Katie Kammler teamed up to create the spiral-bound book (at right), which includes graphs for designing gardens. There is also information on gardening with children, container gardening, planning a flower garden and more. The Garden Journal is available for $15 online from the MU Extension Service.

There are many steps to creating a beautiful, productive garden. Soil preparation, mulching, adding compost, starting seeds, when to plant and when to harvest are just a few things you need to understand to create a successful garden.

“The more information you add to this journal the better,” Aufdenberg said. “It’s helpful for tracking fertilizers, pesticides, what you did in the garden that made it a great year or what happened to make it a bad year.”

The journal also provides a listing of monthly activities in the garden which makes it a great tool for beginning and experienced gardeners. A journal also helps individuals track garden changes from year to year due to weather and other environmental factors.

The journal has pages of pests and diseases, pages for flower gardening, and tools for rotating crops and tracking pH and nutrients.

“While there is a lot of gardening information on the Internet, the notes you make in your journal will be specific to your area and your garden,” said Aufdenberg. “Soil types are different. The environment can be different depending on whether you live north or south.”

Many gardeners report that a key to their success is getting garden plans on paper and then keeping good records. “From Seed to Harvest and Beyond: Garden Journal and Calendar” can help an individual do both.

What this journal contains

  • Graphs for sketching and planning the basic vegetable garden and landscape areas to make it easier to plan for the current garden season as well as seasons to come.
  • Calendars without dates so this journal can be used any year. Each monthly calendar is paired with a page of tips and reminders of what to do in the garden during that month.
  • Plenty of space for recording your thoughts and noting garden successes and needed plant improvements.
  • Forms for recording seed and plant buying information, seed starting, flowers blooming, and pest control methods.
  • Information pages that will help to guide you in the gardening season, and a glossary of garden terms.
  • An index of MU Extension gardening guides.

To order “From Seed to Harvest and Beyond: Garden Journal and Calendar,” visit http://extension.missouri.edu/p/mp928.

George Freeman is a veteran journalist and photographer. An award-winning writer, editor and columnist in Springfield, Mo., with more than 50 years experience. His preference is for positive and uplifting stories about people, places, traditions and trends that make the Ozarks one of the most livable regions anywhere. A member of the Garden Writers Association of America, he is a past-president of the Society of Professional Journalists of Southwest Missouri, the Kansas and Ohio AP societies; a board member of Friends of the Garden and a member of the Rotary Club of Springfield. In 1976, he traveled to India as a member of a Rotary Foundation Group Study Exchange Team.

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