Almost since I started gardening with purpose I have liked to record what I plant when, what grows when, which things change and how, and all sorts of other things that occur. It is brilliant for gauging how long different things take to progress, and it is a valuable resource for learning from successes and problems, though no two growing years are the same.
Last year I decided I would like a fancy, pretty book especially for the cause. A notebook with an appropriately patterned cover would suffice. Looking in a garden centre I saw a lovely A5 notebook with flowers and possibly a watering can on, and I thought it would be just the ticket. Until I saw the price. Knowing it is possible to buy a notebook the same size for several pounds less I had a sudden change of heart!
Wait a minute, I thought, couldn’t I fashion something myself? Then I would have a design of my own choosing. Obvious, really! So searching through my stationery I found a plain cover hardback A4 notebook with only a page or few written in. The very thing.
Next I looked through my scrapbooking collection and found all sorts of pictures of various fruit, vegetables, herbs, trees and the like. I cut out anything that appealed to me for this little project and arranged them in two groups, one for the front of the book and one for the back, until I had an overall look I was happy with.
For the title I soaked some paper in tea to give it an aged look and then I wrote on it in fountain pen, I think, to give it a more traditional vibe. Also I wrote the names of all sorts of plants on the same paper, chopped it up into little bits and added those to the pictures.
When I was satisfied with the layout I glued them all together.
Trimming the rough edges off to neaten them up, I stuck the front page to the front cover of the notebook and the back page to the back of the notebook. Then I covered front and back, though not the spine, with that see through stuff they sell for covering your schoolbooks – ah, those were the days?!?! 😉 – so that my new gardening diary would be wipe clean if it got messy in any fashion.
This book has now had a year’s worth of little gardening anecdotes added to it and I am now writing all about my new plants in it.