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The best gardening and plant care apps for iPhone

Need greener fingers? Then have your digits tap your iPhone and download these great apps

Gardening might seem the last activity that needs a helping hand from your iPhone – apart from, perhaps, listening to a podcast while your fingers are in the dirt. But, as this round-up shows, the right apps can be a boon, whether you’re carefully planning what crops to plant, or need a reminder to water your favorite shrub.

Planta (free + IAP)


This app offers a user-friendly way to manage your botanical world, whether you’re cultivating a sprawling outdoor garden or a cozy indoor space. You can quickly add sites and plants, while perusing basic care tips and potential solutions to problems.

Planta makes all this feel a little more personal too. You can chart each plant’s progress by adding photos and logging milestones. And there’s a community tab, where you can connect with fellow plant enthusiasts, swap stories, and troubleshoot issues.

All this is free, although there is a subscription ($35.99/£32.99 per year) to unlock additional features, including plant treatment plans, a light meter, and watering/fertilizer schedules. You might not want to dig that deep for a gardening app, but even for free Planta offers a great foundation for anyone wanting to nurture their green fingers.

Get Planta

Planter (free + IAP)


Planter is as much garden designer as planner. It goes beyond static lists, so you can visualize and arrange your dream garden with ease.

It does this by having you drag and drop plants into custom grids. This lets you quickly map out a vegetable plot or figure out the intricacies of a flower border. A handy single-page summary can be exported for each garden.

But Planter goes beyond layout. It includes substantial information on a wide variety of vegetables and flowers, and a location-based calendar that outlines when to start, transplant and sow. And a seed box tracker means you’ll never forget about seeds that still need dealing with.

For free, you can experiment with one garden plan. But even if you don’t use that feature, downloading Planter puts a wealth of gardening info right at your (green) fingertips.

Get Planter

PlantNet (free)


Have this app ready for when something sprouts in your garden that you need to identify – or when you spot something elsewhere you’d like at home. Select a photo and tell the app whether it shows a leaf, a flower, fruit or bark. It will then attempt to name what you see. Beyond that, PlantNet includes a huge repository of existing imagery to peruse, and a community feed where you can help other people figure out what’s growing in their gardens.

Get PlantNet

Google (free)

Google app

Although we’re big fans of PlantNet – which is usable, accurate and free (unlike most identification apps) – Google is an excellent alternative. Open the app, tap the Google Lens button (which resembles a multi-colored camera), and tap the shutter when what you’d like to identify is in frame. It will then initiate a standard Google search. Whether you’re searching for a plant or a bug, the answer’s likely to be out there on the internet.

Get Google

Sun Surveyor ($9.99/£9.99)

Sun Surveyor

If you’re doing gardening properly, you need to be planting things where they’ll receive the requisite amount of sunlight. If you’re very familiar with your garden, such planning might be second nature. If not, Sun Surveyor gives you all the tools you need to figure out where the sun will be at any time of the year. It’ll even give you the means to predict how far shadows will fall at various points throughout the day.

Get Sun Surveyor (free)

Tomorrow weather

You can’t control the weather, but you can control when you’ll be outside. And provides a clear indication regarding the best times for gardening, by way of at-a-glance activity forecasts you can drag to the top of the main view. Apollo Weather (free + IAP) performs a similar trick. And although the app’s designed for athletes, its custom options for optimal conditions mean it can be tailored to indicate gardening weather that’s favourable to you.


Prune ($4.99/£4.99)


Finally, if you can’t get enough of gardening but going outdoors isn’t an option right now, Prune brings a little of it inside, by way of a meditative game based around cultivating and growing trees. Each level has you urge your plant towards the light, arcing around rocks and other obstacles. When it escapes the gloom, it bursts into bloom. And if you make a horrible pruning blunder, you can always try again. If only real-world gardening was similarly forgiving.

Get Prune