When people ask us about our favorite Harry Potter character, we never give a serious answer so we usually say Septima Vector or Pomona Sprout. When they ask us why, we just say that we love extra homework or that we love Sprout’s dirt and earth style. Yes, we’re really not the best people to talk to about anything related to Harry Potter. On the other hand, people who are keen gardeners themselves are usually fascinated that we liked Pomona, maybe because of herbology’s close relevance to their hobby. In any case, when we’re feeling verbose, we try to indulge their need to shoot the breeze by not talking about what little we actually know of gardening but by focusing on some of the apps they can use to grow their gardens, such as:
#1 Garden Plan Pro
Said to be “the fastest way to plan a productive vegetable, herb or fruit garden,” Garden Plan Pro is an iOS app that offers an extensive database of plants and plant varieties, as well as flexible drawing tools, planting reminders, and even crop rotation advice. This app also uses data “from more than 6,500 weather stations in 20 countries,” which means that it can seamlessly adapt to your climate and give you recommendations for when to plant and harvest for your area. It’s not the cheapest app out there; but for $9.99, you will definitely get your money’s worth with this highly recommended AppStore app.
This app, which is available on iTunes, Google play, and Nokia Ovi, lists the best choices for planting by giving you a monthly planting calendar localized to your climate zone. It was recommended as one of The New York Times ’10 Freshest Picks’ for gardening in 2012, and was the winner of the 2012 Northern Inland Innovation Awards for the Professional Services category. Gardenate is great for herb and vegetable gardening and only costs $1.99.
If you are a true-blue eco warrior, do yourself a favor right now and download this app (before or after setting up your save the earth 1 800 number—it doesn’t matter). But first, allow us to explain what “seedbombs” are so you can fully understand what the GreenAid app is all about. “Made from a mixture of clay, compost, and seeds, seedbombs are an increasingly popular means of combating the many forgotten grey spaces we encounter every day – from sidewalk cracks to vacant lots and parking medians.” These seedbombs can be thrown (anonymously of course!) into “derelict urban sites to temporarily reclaim and transform them into places worth looking at and caring for.” Now with the GreenAid iOS app, you can find the best places to throw said seedbombs and even view their growth and development, all for FREE!
#4 OG Planting Planner
Here’s something for Organic Gardening fans! Described as “the planting guide that does the thinking for you,” the OG Planting Planner is an app that provides recommended seed sowing, planting, and harvesting dates for hundreds of vegetables, herbs, and flowers. As a personal guide to gardening, this app comes with a “database of plants with complete planting information, GPS supported location finder that identifies frost dates for your garden, weather data for your area, and an option to save plants in your virtual garden for future reference.” It is available for free on iTunes and is designed for both the iPhone and the iPad.
Bonus: Flower Garden
This app is for those who are interested in gardening, but are not big fans of dirt and grime. With Flower Garden, you can plant different types of seeds in a virtual garden, water them, and “watch them bloom in front of your eyes.” It’s like having a gorgeous garden on your smartphone, complete with “the serene sights and sounds of the outdoors.” Other features include: over 20 types of seeds to unlock, full 3D flowers and bouquets that react to the touch, and an option that lets users email bouquets with personalized cards and custom backgrounds. It’s available on the iPhone for $2.99.