By tracking the sun in your garden before you plant anything will be really helpful. Even if you have a balcony, knowing where the sun and shade is at any given time makes growing things easier. Here is the basic outline:
- Make a map of your yard, garden or balcony. It doesn’t have to be to scale. Graph paper is helpful though. You will want to make a second copy of the map. One for the morning sun and one for the afternoon sun. Label them.
- Get three different coloured markers. I used yellow, orange and red
- Choose the day you are going to do the tracking part because you need to be home all day to do it.
- In the morning, mark your map with one colour and show where the sun is and at what time. This gives you your starting point. (You don’t need to get up at dawn to do this, but get up fairly early so you see the morning sun. (I started mine around 7am). From then until noon, look every hour and mark where the sun is. Toward the afternoon you may find you need to add the other two colours of pen because it starts to get a little confusing. Tip: I just kept setting my oven timer for an hour allowing me to do other things around the house without forgetting about my map.
- After noon, get out your afternoon labelled map and begin the process again. I stopped the tracking at about 6pm because it was still a little early in the season. The great thing is you can always add to your map.
I had to make four maps because I couldn’t fit everything on one page. If you need to make multiple maps that is fine, just be sure to label them. You may want to do one for the front, one for the back yard one for side yard etc.
If you have a balcony you will only need one map. You may not need to do an am and pm but if you want to that’s great.
Now you can plan out where your plants and seeds will go. As time goes on you can record in your note book or smash book, if the plants are doing well in those areas or if you had to move them. I included the maps in my garden smash book. To make a garden smash book of your own click here.
Here are some pics of my map of my yard.
If you have any questions feel free to ask. You can email me firstname.lastname@example.org or leave your question in the comments section.