Some plants love being outdoors in the summer; others can’t handle direct sunlight. Some need watering every day, while others rarely need it. To keep up, using a tracker can help you log some basic care information so your plants can survive your busy schedule and their complicated care. Here are a few ways to do it.
What you should log in your plant tracker
Seedlings need different attention than full-grown plants, and succulents need different care than a bonsai plant. You’ll need to keep track of water intake, including which of your plants need water and when. Additionally, it’s necessary to keep an eye on their levels of light versus shade. It’s also important to keep track of plant fertilisation needs and the best and worst times to feed your plant. All of this is a lot to remember, of course, which is why you want to keep your plant care routine organised and written down.
Organise your plant care routine with an app
Some apps like Planta will help you know exactly when to water a plant; they also have a light metre to determine which plants should go where in your home. They’ll even recommend plants based on your skillset, whether you’re a beginner or advanced.
Other apps like Vera help you create a schedule and give extensive guides for learning new skills. If you want to learn how to repot a certain plant, you can search and receive step-by-step instructions.
Beware of apps that make you pay exorbitant amounts of money for basic services, though. Some claim to be able to spot and diagnose certain plant diseases, but I found this inaccurate when trying it on my recently sick succulent. Despite glitches in some plant apps, others have been proven as effective in spotting toxic plants and providing accurate plant identification.
Use a specialised spreadsheet for your plant care routine
If you’re more digitally inclined but averse to adding another app to your roster, try setting up a spreadsheet. You can have different tabs for different plant details — one tab for water, another for fertiliser, and so on. Save it on your preferred cloud service so you can share the spreadsheet with whoever takes care of your plants while you’re away from home. You can start your spreadsheets from scratch or look for templates online. Some specialised plant care templates can cost money, but as low as $8.
Track your plant care with an old-fashioned journal
If you are someone like me who still uses a paper planner, try using a plant journal. Good old-fashioned pen and paper lets you organise your plant planning however you like, with your own style of lists and calendars. If you’re more creatively inclined, you can draw pictures for plant inventory and design garden layouts. Journals are obviously easy to carry with you to your outdoor garden and keep around the house.