There's two lines for every single vegetable that I grew and/or harvested last year. The first line for each veggie shows the date that I sowed the seeds or set out the transplants. The second line shows each harvest date in brown. There's a separate column for each month of the year. There's also a column to show dates for vegetables sown the previous year and additional columns for veggies harvested in the next year. There's still one more month of data to input when February of this year is over and perhaps I'll add one more column to show harvests after February. It makes it easy to see at a glance how long it took from sowing or planting to the first harvest. I've included each harvest to indicate frequency of harvests. I toyed with the idea of adding one more column to show total harvest weights, but decided not to because that seems like TMI, I want to use this schedule for planning when to sow and how to plan successions, harvests weights don't really come into play for that.
My 2015 schedule is already set up and should be easy to keep up with on a weekly basis or so. One thing that I want to work on this year is adding a few more notes, such as disease or pest problems, things to look out for in the future, or unusual weather such as extreme heat or freezes. I think I should also add some tentative dates for when I should be sowing some crops, add another color to the line of sowing/planting out dates.
Here's another sample of my record keeping, I use iCloud Notes to record my garden activities, below is a cut a paste of January's notes. I have an iPad that sits on my kitchen counter most of the time and whenever I plan on sowing seeds I sit at the counter, make out my labels, and record it in my notes. When I come in from the garden I try to make a note of what I've done. I start a new note each month. This is the method that I use for keeping track of my harvests as well. Since the notes are kept in the cloud I can easily access them when I work on my desktop computer and input the data into my spreadsheets. At the end of the month I email a copy of the note to myself to keep a backup copy. Easy, really, it is.
January Sowing and Planting
- Candy, Red Candy Apple, and Superstar onion seedlings set out
-- 1 row each of 22 plants, 4" spacing
-- 1 row, ~15 plants each, 2" spacing
Spigariello Foglia Liscia - 4"
Broccolo Spigariello - 4" (none germinated, old seeds)
Purple Peacock broccoli - 4"
Atlantis Brokali - 4"
Pixie cabbage - 4"
Zebrune shallots - 4"
Set out bareroot strawberries - 9 Albion & 9 Seascape
Pulled all carrots
Set out Rossa Lunga di Firenza onions, 2 inch spacing
Set out Tonda Musona Bianca onions, 2-inch spacing
Set out Zebrune shallots, 4-inch spacing
Red Iceberg - 4"
Reine des Glaces - 4"
Rhapsody butterhead - 4"
Ruby Gem romaine - 4"
Sweetie Baby romaine - 4"
Set out second round of Zebrune shallots, 4-inch spacing
Sowed cilantro by Favas
Scattered Golden Corn Salad between strawberry plants and around favas
Potted up Atlantis Brokali
Removed Di Ciccio broccoli
Removed Golden Sweet snow and Super Sugar Snap peas
Potted up Purple Peacock broccoli
Cleared out China Rose radishes
Cut back Speedy arugula nearly to the ground since it was bolting
I'm finding that the better I am at keeping records that the better my garden becomes. My memory is terrible, I can't possibly remember everything I've done in the garden or everthing that needs to be done and when, especially when. There's so many things I've not grown because I've missed the correct time to get them started. Going back through my blog is always interesting and informative, but it takes too much time, I hope that my new schedule will provide at-a-glance information to help me hone my gardening skills.