Starting a Garden Journal


I’ve started a garden journal for a couple of reasons. Mostly because I like the idea of it, it seems like a gentle and mindful practice, one that makes you look closer at things. But also because I don’t like having bits of cheap looking plastic tags flapping around on plants & I can’t remember how to look after all of them!

the ‘before’ picture – plants almost too small to see

the ‘after’ picture – just one year later


The garden has changed in an incredible way since this time last year, when the first real planting was done. I was told when I moved in that plants either grow really well here or not at all- however most seem to have taken. But it’s not just plants – structures have been added, using local materials wherever possible. An entrance way out of logs, that I’ll grow a climbing rose up & beautiful dry stone walls made by local craftsmen.

so beautiful sitting among the roses, salvias, achillaes, pokers… until I was stung by a bee!


So to be sitting among tall well established fragrant plants, with little birds darting in and sipping nectar from the yellow pokers is like a dream. I really have to be grateful to Seasol and Lambley’s nursery where I got most of the plants & every one who has helped work in the garden to make it bloom so beautifully.

my journal customized with flower stickers and pink tape

the giant echium, right, only tiny when planted last year


But of course a garden never ends- and that’s why I’ve started a journal, to plan and map the voyage on from here…

an artichoke from the garden

kangaroos in the early morning mist


To record unexpected surprises like the wild opium poppy found growing out the front, a legacy from the Gold Rush days when there was an opium den in town. The red and black somehow similar to the colouring of a red back spider I once saw – the unreal intensity a warning of danger.

slate markers I have painted to go in next to the plants

wild opium poppy found in the garden


To note down how much I am learning about growing things- for example I never understood that mulch was like a little blanket that kept the moisture in and the weeds away. And to understand that everything is changing around us all the time & how planting a garden is almost an act of hope in the future.

Comments(8)

8 thoughts on “Starting a Garden Journal

  1. I love your work! A garden journal is such a magnificent way to capture the changes over time. Your garden is looking amazing already and it will only get better from here.

    • Hello Jennifer, Thank you. I was surprised myself to see the two photos side by side – just a year apart, so much has changed. It’s interesting, starting a garden journal had made me think about doing some sketches of plants… all the best, Ingrid

  2. Great to discover your blog! Your garden is absolutely beautiful and very inspiring. My husband and I just bought an old school house too, and a post office to boot, in Queensland. I’m not much of a gardener yet but can’t wait to get started. Great to find others moving in a similar direction.

    • Hi Edwina, Thank you. Just checked out your house – it’s quite a challenge you have taken on… but it has beautiful bones, love the fretwork over the doorway. You may already be aware of a beautiful book called ” The Australian House: Homes of the Far North”- the photographer is Ray Joyce- lots of inspiration to be found there. The classic Queenslander is such a great style – will check in to see how you are going… wishing you all the very best with it, Ingrid

  3. Have been following your blog for a little while and love what you are achieving and your garden is looking spectacular. Incredible in such a short time really. We have a california bungalow in Brisbane that we plan to renovate early next year and I have so loved finding out the history of our old house. Would love to know more about yours too. mel x

    • Hi Mel, Lovely to hear from you, and to check out your blog. What a gorgeous picture of your house with the matching jacaranda! Think it’s great how your style fits with the architectural style of the house, such an important thing to do really. Look forward to seeing how you’re going with it… all the very best, Ingrid

  4. LOVE your garden journal and your garden looks AMAZING!!!!!! Truly spectacular.

    “how planting a garden is almost an act of hope in the future.” well said. Happy weekend xx

    • Thank you Tina, – I’m surprised by the garden’s progress too- feels more like two years growth rather than one. x i