Friday, January 17, 2014

When To Plant - An App Review

Queen Composter, an iPhone addict, is reviewing another app that encourages a green lifestyle.

With seed starting season quickly approaching (I will be starting some seeds indoors in a few weeks), I was interested in trying the When to Plant app created by Mother Earth News that I purchased for $1.99

There are numerous websites to help plan when to start seeds indoors, transplant seedlings and direct sow seeds outdoors, based upon planting hardiness zones. I enjoy reading articles from Mother Earth News so I was curious what the app has to offer.

When I opened the app I was prompted to pick favourite plants in the database (123 plants listed alphabetically). It is by no means a comprehensive list, but it covers the plants that most people would be interested in growing.

There is information about each plant, such as the soil quality, sun exposure, sowing, spacing and feeding advice, whether it is frost tolerant, and harvesting tips.

On the main page there are several search options: favourite plants, plants to sow now, month by month schedules, and all plants. In the settings the app gives the option of setting the frost date for your area to help determine when to plant.

The app uses a colour coding system, with blue representing which plants can be started indoors in a given month, green representing when to direct sow or transplant seedlings outdoors, and orange representing possible harvest dates. I am a visual person and I like scanning the year with the colour system .

While I can find all of the information contained in the app easily online, or even on seed packets, I appreciate the “plant now!” option the most. I like being able to quickly browse which plants I need to focus on in the near future. Being able to look ahead to harvest dates helps me think ahead and plan the layout of the garden beds.

For some the app may not be useful, but I like being able to access information quickly about various plants as I research and plan my coming kitchen garden. I do feel that $1.99 is a bit steep for the app ($0.99 would be fair), but I am not opposed to paying for an app if I find it useful (I believe that people should be paid for creating content).

I will be using this app in the coming months, even if just for quick reference.

1 comment:

Alice said...

Pretty snappy app! I'll have to look into it.


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