Gardening Apps: Getting Techie With It!

By Wilma Jozwiak

So many of us have smart phones now and use them for every­thing from get­ting direc­tions to search­ing out great places to eat or shop. Now, for the gar­den-mind­ed among us, there are a num­ber of plant appli­ca­tions. Here is a small selec­tion of some inter­est­ing ones. For apps list­ed below, click on the app name, or for the Home Out­side app, on iPhone or Android to vis­it the appro­pri­ate appli­ca­tion store.

Leaf Snap: This sweet lit­tle app helps those of us who want to iden­ti­fy trees by their leaves and fruit. Devel­oped by Colum­bia Uni­ver­si­ty, the Uni­ver­si­ty of Mary­land, and the Smith­son­ian Insti­tu­tion, it is cur­rent­ly avail­able only for the iPhone and iPad. The app is free.

Gar­den Answers Plant ID
: For flower iden­ti­fi­ca­tion, take a pho­to of the flower and this app will com­pare it to a data­base of over 20,000 plants. The ser­vice is free but if more help is need­ed, you may Ask an Expert,” where one of the staff sup­plies an answer for a fee of $1.99 per ques­tion. If the staff can­not iden­ti­fy your plant, you will be able to resub­mit your ques­tion with more infor­ma­tion and bet­ter pho­tos at no addi­tion­al charge. Under cer­tain cir­cum­stances, you may be referred to your local mas­ter gar­den­er, uni­ver­si­ty resource, or oth­er vol­un­teer ser­vice — there is no fee for this ref­er­ence. This app is avail­able for both iPhone and Android.

The Smart­Plant app
: The app is avail­able for iPhone and Android and comes in a basic or pre­mi­um form. The free ver­sion pro­vides access to the plant library and month­ly plant advice. The pre­mi­um vari­ant, for $3.99 a month or $35.99 a year, gives you unlim­it­ed plant and pest ID, plus plant expert Q & A. This is a bit pricey, but the paid ver­sion does have good reviews.

Veg­etable Tree Gar­den­ing Guide
: This appli­ca­tion is avail­able in the App Store for iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch for $4.99. It allows the gar­den­er to keep track of plant infor­ma­tion such as vari­ety, num­ber, date plant­ed, and yields. It also allows the gar­den­er to upload pho­tos. Reviews report that the devel­op­er is very respon­sive to inquiries, and in fact it is the #1 veg­etable gar­den­ing app on the App Store.

Home Out­side
: This app is all about plan­ning your gar­den or yard. It is free for both iPhone and Android and allows the gar­den­er to set up a plot and add ele­ments, move them around, and try dif­fer­ent com­po­nents. Struc­tures such as pools, hous­es, sheds, etc. can be includ­ed along with the plants, so an over­all lay­out of your prop­er­ty is pos­si­ble. It also allows GPS iden­ti­fi­ca­tion of your gar­den plot. Although it can be a bit chal­leng­ing to start with, the tuto­r­i­al is very good, and you will be proud of your­self for mas­ter­ing it.

This is just a taste of the many apps avail­able now for gar­den­ers. We will be bring­ing your news of oth­ers in the future. We hope you will let us know about apps you have used and how you would rate them.

Spring 2018

Volume 36 , Number 2

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