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Gardening may look easy, but there's a subtle art to it. Even if you're just growing herbs on your windowsill, each plant needs careful management, and the slightest deviation in your watering or fertilizing schedule can result in withered leaves and small, undernourished stalks. Garden Plan Pro thinks it can help. With a comprehensive strategy that maps every square inch of your plot of plants, the app doesn't just keep track of your seedlings—it offers tips and guidance that promise to get your garden off the ground.
Freshly redesigned with a clean iOS 7 aesthetic, the app's interface gives off an air of simplicity, but there's nothing simplistic about its core capabilities. With a set of relatively easy-to-use tools, you can make a scale representation of your gardening area, including any flowerbeds, pathways, or shrubbery that may adorn it. When searching for plants to add, you'll find far more than a list of common flora: select one of the nearly 200 varieties of greens and it'll tell you optimal planting time, spacing, position, and soil saturation, along with a few extra tips and tricks for more advanced gardeners. And if your thumb isn't green enough to take advantage of all of that information, it can tap into location services to tell you what will grow best in your particular climate.
But while we enjoyed designing our garden, the app isn't quite as useful as it could be. For example, you can set the month a particular plant was put in the ground, but you can't choose a specific date of germination. Consequently, the only way to keep track of watering or rotating is by entering detailed notes in its barebones journal, so we'd like the ability to add pictures or set alerts in a future update. We also had some trouble with moving plants around, and experienced iCloud slowdown and syncing issues.
The bottom line. Garden Plan Pro will help you pick and plant the garden of your dreams, but the app isn’t as helpful with making it grow.
iPhone or iPod touch running iOS 6.0 or later
Good design tools help you meticulously map out your garden. Excellent library of plants. Lots of useful tips and information on proper gardening.
No way to set specific dates for planting. Lacks scheduling options and watering alerts. No pictures or organization options in journal. iCloud syncing is slow and occasionally unreliable.