Gardening questions? There's an app for that PDF Print E-mail
Written by Sentinel-Tribune Staff   
Thursday, 14 June 2012 08:46
The joys of gardening are endless. Whether you're a fan of homegrown vegetables or simply looking for some herbal inspiration, there is a smartphone app that can offer tips and guidance for experienced, and first-time gardeners alike. Molly Mclaughlin, Senior Editor of - an award-winning Web site that helps consumers make informed choices - has weeded through every gardening app on the market to bring consumers her top picks of 2012.
• Botany Buddy (Available on iTunes for $9.99)
Botany Buddy's price tag might deter you from purchasing it. However, when you consider all that the Botany Buddy app offers, one might want to reconsider. The app allows you to search more than 2,000 plant species by common or botanical name. Whether you're looking for a particular tree, shrub, cactus, succulent or tropical plant, chances are you will find it in this app's database. There are more than 9,500 original and scientifically verified color photos for you to browse. Once you have installed the library, you won't need an internet connection to load it up, meaning that you can use it while you're out and about. Updates are free, too.
• Pocket Garden (Available on iTunes for $0.99; there is also a free, ad-supported version)
Pocket Garden is geared towards those interested in vegetable gardening. Whether you prefer artichokes or zucchinis, you can find information on planting their seeds in Pocket Garden. In addition to suggestions on planting depth, spacing and watering. This app tracks your own organic garden. The app will help you estimate when the veggies are due to germinate and when you can finally harvest them.
• Gardening Toolkit (Available on iTunes for $1.99)
Gardening Toolkit takes into account your location, the season and frost likelihood and will put together a list of suggested plants for you to grow, all you have to do is type your zip code and the app will display your "hardiness zone" which is a rundown of year-round climate conditions in your area. Once you start planting, use the "My Garden" feature to track when each plant is going to bloom and when you can harvest it. The app even comes with a To-Do List feature so you don't forget when to add fertilizer and lets you add your photos. Last but not least, if you're ever in doubt, you can browse the encyclopedia, which contains information and photos of more than 1,000 species.
• Gardenate ($1.99 for iPhone, $3.99 for iPad, $0.99 for Android and $1.99 for Nokia)
Gardenate provides information on more than 90 edible garden plants. If you open up the "Planting Now" feature, you'll receive local planting information. The calendar feature, in turn, will tell you what to plant and how, month-by-month. The Gardenate app itself works without an internet connection, but if you want more tips, head to to interact with a community of plant lovers online.
• Grow Journal ($2 for Android; there is also a free demo version)
The creators of this app describe it as being "great for medical marijuana patients," but really, anyone growing any kind of plant at home can take advantage of the Grow Journal, which lets you easily track the growth of your plants. The app itself comes with a list of more than 150 plants, but you can also add your own including photos.

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