Garden Geeks Grow More! – Stacey Murphy









Great Big Ideas & Takeaways:

  • How Stacey produces 50lbs of food per week—in only 500 sq. ft.
  • Maintaining a 500 sq ft. garden in 2 hours per week.
  • Fun science experiments to get the most out of your garden.
  • The one tool that can double, triple, maybe even quadruple your yield.
  • Know when pests are going to attack your crops so you can prevent them.
  • Compare plant spacings with yields to maximize your yield per square foot.
  • Calculate which crops are worth growing and which are cheaper at the market.
  • Save more than 50% on seed costs.
  • An exciting forest-floor compost bin design.

About The Speaker:

Stacey Murphy founded BK Farmyards, a cooperative of urban farmers in Brooklyn dedicated to social justice through urban agriculture, and she has helped create over an acre of new farmyards in Brooklyn. She has taught 1,000s of teens and adults how to grow, harvest and prepare fresh foods.

She’s been featured on Martha Stewart Radio, PBS online, and even appeared on the David Letterman show with a giant radish. And to get kids excited about vegetables, herbal medicine and gardening, Stacey writes and publishes children’s books at Planet Bambino. Her first book My Dinosaur Ate My Broccoli was an Amazon #1 Bestseller when it was first released.

Stacey envisions a world where everyone is nourished by the magic of fresh, affordable, and culturally exciting food… extra points if it’s homegrown. She is a recovering engineer and architect, turned proud garden geek.


QUESTION: What’s your favorite takeaway from Stacey’s presentation?


  1. Christina

    Templates. More than I will use, but a few that I will. Great information presented – helpful things to know for planting this season and the future.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      You’re so right, ALL the templates are not for everyone. Hope you can use the ones that you find valuable.

      1. Geoff Lawton

        Just beautiful stuff Stacey the world needs people like you keep charging on.

  2. Susan

    The harvesting log was the best take away for us but the way she presents the information on gardening makes it easier to learn and apply.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Thanks Susan – It’s true: our tools are only as good as our understanding of how to use them. That’s the same for a trowel as it is for a harvest log. Happy harvesting!

      1. Marjory WIldcraft

        Glad to see you online Stacy!

    2. stephen J. Lohn

      Great program. I learned a lot from you, down loaded you charts. I would like to keep in contact with you; do you have a blog I could follow. How about any books you may have written.

      A little about me, I grow tropical fruit trees in central Florida, I’ve found growing vegetables a totally different animal.
      Thanks again,
      Steve Lohn,

  3. Wanda Carlton

    thank you i learned a lot

    1. Stacey Murphy

      My pleasure!

  4. Kelly Lowe

    I found her presentation to be very well organized and informative. I love all of her templates and I am excited to use them this spring. I found the composting data to be extremely interesting especially since we have a small trash can style and haven’t been seeing much decomposing as we planned but it seems as though we would benefit more from an open and larger style composting setup which we will begin soon as we start cleaning up our garden in the upcoming week. Thank you for such an informative and useful presentation! Stacey you have a new fan!!!

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Hi Kelly – Glad you found this helpful. And yes, all organic matter will decompose, but if you want it to decompose faster… some turning is really helpful which is made easier by a larger, open air compost bin (if you have the space). Some people don’t like the extra work of turning the pile, but I appreciate being able to get those nutrients back in the soil more quickly. Best of luck!

  5. Amanda Marshall

    So much practical and really useful information here, I particularly liked the parts about camouflage planting ideas, and the chart template for logging which pests attack when and how severe. I will be using the templates, I have already downloaded them. Thank you Stacey!

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Great to hear! Tracking those pests and diseases is so helpful for timing your prevention strategies next year. Hope there are many happy harvests in your future!

  6. Bellen

    I gardened for about 45 yrs in CT with great results, moved to FL 10 years ago and have been flummoxed by growing in ground and in containers. It’s like being a newbie. All her info and templates will certainly help me. Even at 70 yrs old I’m always learning something new. Thanks!!

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Hello! If you are in Southern Florida (zone 10), you may want to flip your growing season and grow from September – May and take those hot summers off when veggies don’t do so well. And of course, your soil is going to be sooooo different in Florida. Take some time to add some compost and rock dust. Maybe there’s a community garden close by where you can talk to local growers to see what adjustments you need to make with the local conditions. I’m sure you’re going to learn a lot! Have fun.

  7. Eva

    Thank yo Stacy for all the valuable information. I enjoyed your presentation.

  8. Birgitte

    Great information here! Thank you for the templates, I will definitely be utilizing these!!!!

  9. Jean

    A tec question: some times there is a place to rate the presentation and the comments, other times (like now) there isn’t. How do I get to rate?

    1. Stacey Murphy

      That’s strange. Maybe refreshing the page might help. You can also try a different browser. I’m viewing in Safari and it seems to be working. Unfortunately, I can’t help much with the web tech on this event.

  10. Amanda

    YES! This was a fantastic presentation! I loved it! I am a computer programmer, turned chemical engineer, turned housewife/gardener/canner & preserver. I’ve already made spreadsheets to track my harvest & canned foods, and wrote a database program to generate my seeding & planting schedule. She gave me so many more ideas to track! I would have never thought to track pests and diseases. Or experiment with plant spacings. I am super excited about making more spreadsheets for my garden. I don’t care how nerdy it is; it’s so fun and I love it. Thank you for all of this wonderful information and ideas!

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Yay! I was a mechanical engineer a few decades ago, and my garden lets me continue my science experiments in every day life. Awesome to meet another garden nerd.

  11. Susan Harris

    This was a fantastic presentation! Very clear ideas and suggestions, that even a backyard gardener within city limits can do. I also like the fact she told you which templates to start with so one does not become too overwhelmed, especially if this is the first year gardening.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      So true, Susan – I would hate for anyone to feel overwhelmed… one measurement at a time. I’m happy to connect to another city grower!

  12. Sue Anne Willis

    Collecting Data can be FUN. Patterns are Data. Love your thoroughness. Thank you Stacey, this is so helpful for a new grower.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Hi Sue! Great to see you here. Good to know I’m not the only one who enjoys data so much 😉

      1. Sandra

        dear Stacey, What I certainly take away from this is the conscious working with patterns as inspired by those beautiful images that opened up for the other brain half stuff 🙂 … Apply it to all areas…

        Wow, I can really imagine how your data system could bring valuable conclusions about gardening in tune with the moon. I do write the info into a moon calendar, where I also see the best days to plant and to irrigate and to weed (and when not to). I have experienced significant correlations.

        It is great to have had a garden lot for several years. I had successfully implemented the camouflaging technique. Some plants are good neighbours. Combining aromatic herbs with veggies also adds to the taste of veggies.

        You all here really make me miss that my first garden, and same time help me visualize and feel again what it is like. So this helps me to again create a powerful vision and take action steps from this wonderful feeling. Thank you so much! This is after having watched several presentations in a row, really immersing. Thank you so much, dear Marjory!

  13. Clairemarie

    Thank you Stacey for sharing the workings of your wonderfully organized brain. Simply brilliant and so very helpful!

    1. Stacey Murphy

      What a compliment! My pleasure in sharing, Clairemarie. I have found it helpful to direct my OCD organization at my garden, and I’m happy it can be of use to others 😉

  14. Sharon Morton

    So detailed but I realize this is the Geek coming out. I enjoyed this very much I have moved to many places in my life and have always attempted gardening. This will help immensely Thank you for all of the information and templates. I think I will keep the original as a guide line and tweek it to my area and purpose.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Hi Sharon – You’re so right… local conditions make every garden unique. Measuring and tracking the differences can help you grow food wherever you are. Have fun and let me know how it goes.

  15. Elke

    Thank you Stacey, this is a great tool for me, I have been growing for many years but never collected data. Since I want to be more successful and take gardening to the next level this will be very helpful. I am a non geek, mostly do by intuition but this system might well be a eye opener for me:) Great presentation, loved it!

    1. Stacey Murphy

      My pleasure Elke – Sounds like you’re in tune with the natural world. That’s awesome! I worked on intuition my first year, too. Once I started tracking, I noticed that I had a couple biases and gaps in my memory that I didn’t realize. I would recommend tracking just one thing to start, see if it’s enjoyable and what you learn. You don’t have to totally nerd out like I do 😉

  16. Tami

    The maturity of this presentation is astonishing. I appreciate the richness of information, the cohesive thoughts, the imagination, the precision and the interest you packed into this session, Stacey. Your future as a strong female voice in permaculture is exciting.
    Thanks for noticing Stacey’s contributions, Marjory!

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Many thanks Tami for all your kind words. I’m so blessed to do this work and honored to be in great company.

  17. Jennifer

    Really enjoyed this presentatio and learned a lot – have been gardening for a while, but will use these methods to improve, thank you. I couldn’t use the link from the video and when I entered the web site was unable to find the templates. Any advice on how to get to them? Thanks.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      You tried this website?

      There’s an orange link that says “Download the Guide”

      If you continue to have issues, you can send an email to and we can get the guide to you that way, too.

      1. Kate

        10×10 community garden plot here in Hawaii. Thanks Stacey for the live link to your templates. Disciplined note taking is valuable but not my strength. Your presentation on your larger space says mine can be a piece of cake. Good job.

      2. Jennifer

        Thank you very much for this, it worked, really appreciate you taking the time to answer this (and all the other) questions! My planting season has just started (live in Bermuda) so am really looking forward to implementing some of these ideas:)

  18. Pat

    I am a data person and usually track my harvest. But haven’t thought about tracking all of these things. Really like the templates. Do you have them available as Excel spreadsheets that can be modified without having to re-create them? I like to have a printed copy on my clipboard for in the garden, but usually enter the info in a spreadsheet to do the calculations and save the files from year to year.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Hi Pat – I’m so glad your creativity has been sparked. I do have spreadsheets for all these forms; however, they are currently only available to students in my paid online course. As you mention, it’s valuable to easily calculate everything year to year, and teaching is how I survive 😉

  19. Pam

    Strong presentation with lots of excellent information., thank you. As a bit of a side note, I was wondering in regard to composting what the thoughts are about bokashi? In the long and usually snowy winters we get compost piles freeze solid and I was thinking that bokashi and then earthworms might work to speed things up.

    Also, thank you again for sending me the link as I never did get a working one to join this summit.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Hi Pam – So glad you made it to the event!

      I’m a huge fan of Bokashi in the cold months. If you add enough bran and make sure there’s no extra liquid, you can store the buckets until thaw and throw them in your main compost bin in the spring or bury them of course.

      Happy composting!

  20. Donna Nielsen

    Hi Stacey, great presentation. I have been growing food for 45 years, in many places. Climate makes so much difference in everything. In moderate climates like Delaware and western Washington, gardening was almost automatic. Even in Maine and New Mexico I did OK. Now I have been in CO for 10 years and am still struggling to learn how to get crops to grow.

    I have tried to set up systems to record data, but in the heat of summer, when I am spending most of my time just trying to keep plants moist enough to survive, the recording all seems to just be too much. But maybe I can try again and be motivated to do better.

    I did download your templates, but I am not a geek of any description, and am not sure how to actually use the templates. I still have a lot of trouble with computer stuff. Help, please.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Hi Donna – Are you growing in the mountains in Colorado? Vegetable gardens can be very tricky at high altitude and also the mountains produce a lot of local, mini micro-climates. High altitude, where air is thin, makes water evaporate faster… which is what it sounds like you’re experiencing? I just started growing here in San Diego and am experimenting with buried ollas as a way to try to keep the soil moist without doing a lot of work. Stay tuned on my Youtube channel for updates. How large is your garden?

  21. Dave

    Templates are very useful, important for rotating crops also. Thanks for great presentation!

    1. Stacey Murphy

      My pleasure! Thanks for tuning in, Dave.

  22. Mary Jean

    this was an awesome presentation. So will PLANNED and so very motivating.
    Big thank you—love the templates and that will make it so much easier to get organized and keep on track for future plantings.
    Heading over to your website to get signed up as don’t want to miss anything of yours.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Welcome Mary Jean – Thanks for the follow.

  23. Caroline

    Thank you–I loved this. Excellent presentation quality. I already use a big crop planning spreadsheet as I am growing for a small farm CSA (45 families), but have not tried using charts to track weather, yields, spacing, etc. Probably not enough time in our season to do all of this, but the information it produces is clear and would be wonderful for a home gardener. The crazy weather patterns of the last few years may make the data collection less useful, but it certainly would be interesting to see what patterns do show up with some consistency.

    This presenter was my favorite so far for her personality, speaking voice and manner, and enthusiasm for her subject.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Hi Caroline – Great to meet a fellow farmer here. Do you ever use crop enterprise budgets to track your business? If you’re running a CSA, it might not be useful to track every crop individually (There’s lots of enterprise budget examples to reference online especially with the N.Carolina extension.) Yes, even the crazy weather gave us some valuable insight. In 5 years of farming in Brooklyn, I experienced two hurricanes, one tornado and one hail storm that made our entire farm look like cole slaw overnight. We were able to calculate how much value we lost in the field and ask for financial support from our community.

  24. ann

    I can’t download the templates as it keeps telling me my email isn’t valid.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      That’s strange… you can send an email to if you still have issues.

  25. Deb Miller

    Good advice, i am so bad about documentation!

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Start with one piece of the puzzle like the Harvest Log. That’s what we care about most, right? 😉 Soon, you’ll be scheming about how to get more harvest because that’s what you’re focused on.

  26. Leslie Spurling

    I liked it all: a semi-geek, I have kept a casual garden journal for years, but this all makes so much sense! Btw, I tried to vote formthis presentation, but it doesn’t look like it registered…same thing on a couple others.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Casual garden journals are a great place to start. Especially if you read it start to finish at the end of the season and immediately make decisions for next year before you forget everything you learned this year. Thanks for your vote of confidence, I appreciate it (even if it didn’t register).

  27. Jean-Guy

    Great presentation … I have been vegetable gardening since 2012 … love it … thanks for the tips

    1. Stacey Murphy

      My pleasure! And I’m so happy you’ve been gardening and loving it: let’s get everyone excited about growing 😉

  28. Sabrina

    Loved all the info! Gotta get your charts!

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Go and grab ’em here:

      Happy harvesting!

  29. Bonnie Krause-Gams

    Great presentation Stacey. Your excitement is definitely contagious. All your dedication and work, and you are willing to share.. Can definitely see the engineer in you.
    Thank you for giving of yourself to better the earth, and to take our hands and lead us through data filled gardening.

    Geeks are good!

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Thanks for tuning in, Bonnie – I’m trying to give geeks a better name 😉

  30. Debra Gordon

    Thank you Stacey for all your insightful information. I definitely will be downloading the templates to try to help me improve my crop yield. I appreciate all the time you put into this presentation & the session was very much worth watching. See you in the garden.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      My pleasure, and thanks for all you do improving the world with your garden!

  31. Carolyn

    Hi Stacey

    You’re a terrific presenter. You know your subject and you presented it clearly and at a good pace. As an experienced permaculture gardener you kept my attention. I particularly liked what you had to say about Insect camouflage through Polyculture. It works for me. Thanks for taking the time to put the presentation together and for sharing your templates.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Hi Carolyn – I’m honored to do this work and glad that something resonated with you. I’d love to experience the world the way insects do. We so often anthropomorphize them: I’m so curious how they experience the garden.

  32. Jon

    We certainly went to different schools together!

    I applaud you and you have helped me better illustrate some aspects I speak on from time to time.

    You are garden competence at its finest and I am so very happy.

    I recommend checking out some natural farming/Korean farming aspects. Specifically the inputs.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Hi Jon – So happy to connect! Thanks for the insights, and I’ll check out the things you suggest.

  33. Donna Nielsen

    I am in NW CO at 6000 ft. It is high desert, upper Sonoran life zone, according to charts I found online. Evaporation is much higher than precipitation, so I have found it helps to use a very thick mulch, of wood chips so the mulch doesn’t all blow away (yes, I have seen my mulches disappear on the wind).

    I have a home garden of about 500 square feet, in boxed beds I cover with cold frame tops or mini-hoop houses Oct through May, for cool season crops, plus a small food forest with a few young fruit trees and perennial herbs and veggies.

    I also have a 2 acre property I am developing as a market garden and food forest. Currently my trees and shrubs are only about waist or shoulder high, after 3 or 4 years of growth. The rabbits girdled most of them this past winter, but they came back from the base (free coppicing). I do deep sheet mulch and use chicken tractors, and in those areas I am starting to see some topsoil developing, but it is a very slow process.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Thanks for sharing this Donna – I have a couple students who have similar reports of growing at high altitudes. You’re an inspiration for those who are just beginning. The evaporation rate can be quite a surprise if you’ve never grown at high altitudes. Wishing you a lush garden and abundant harvest!

  34. Donna Nielsen

    I do keep a garden journal, and write down what I plant, how much I harvest, etc, but not how much of which variety.

  35. Joel

    This was easily the best presentation of the seminar!

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Thanks Joel – you made my day!

  36. Karen

    thank you Stacey. Perhaps you could make it a campaign to convince your government in the US to take it on. The US is about the only country in the world which has not upheld its Paris climate change agreement unlike other countries in the world which for starters have a lower carbon footprint. I will be doing some data collection and record keeping courtesy of your education. Best wishes, Karen

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Preach it Karen!
      I was trying to implement a task force in Brooklyn that would measure all the ways in which urban farming was benefiting the city so that politicians could put their money behind strategies that would help reverse climate change. It was an uphill battle to say the least. Thanks for raising such a great question!

  37. Amanda

    Thank you isn’t enough. I suffered a massive stroke a little over 3 years ago just before my 38th birthday and lost part of my ability to focus especially with organization. Your templates are an enormous gift to help me as I continue to work on adapting my gardening since I can no longer use my left arm. I can’t wait to download them and for the time to use them to get hEre. I used to be very analytical and you’ve awoken part of that in me again.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Hi Amanda – it’s awesome that you are literally re-wiring your brain post-stroke. Have you ever read the book The Brain That Changes Itself? I’m so happy these templates can be of some help. You’re such an inspiration. Keep it up!

  38. Sue

    Thank you Stacey for this presentation on using data to effectively tract ones garden from seed purchasing, to water needs based on the
    garden size, to increasing the amount of crops or
    food grown, to bug infestations,and more and creating graphs and spreadsheets to chart the results. I never would have thought to create such data in gardening but it really is a great idea. I also like your high powered spray wash for removing cabbage larvae from developing plants.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      My pleasure! Thanks for tuning in Sue.
      Remember the data is only as good as what it tells you. The key is to ask yourself questions at the start of the season about what is most important to learn that could increase your yield.

  39. Amy Landers

    Good to know I’m not the only one who loves a detailed spreadsheet for planning my garden. And you take it to a whole other level, Stacey! I’m inspired. 🙂

    I like how you frame data as a way to see patterns. And my favorite takeaway is how you described a compost bin as the forest floor with the volume turned up (all the way to 11!?) I look forward to exploring your bonus PDFs. Thank you!

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Great to see you hear Amy!
      Garden data junkies unite
      Looking forward to continuing the conversation with you online 😉

  40. Sgl

    You should feel very happy about your presentation when you read these comments!!! I too was so impressed with your presentation. It truly was information packed and held so much enthusiasm about doing the growing thing!!! I thought the spacing data concept was the best, which affects so many of your other data. You kept referring to patterns and my mind went to planting patterns: circles, one foot squares, wedges, etc. or flowers, vegetables, herb repetitions, the visual side of it, but that is more on the permaculture/polyculture concepts you alluded to and would not have fit into this information packed presentation. Thank you for all your effort and time! I hope you kept data on your presentation because I feel like you will be invited to return to this event next year! Hint, hint, repeat this event next year and include Stacey! Again, I say thank you to MEN and Majory for finding such wonderful presenters.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Aw shucks… I’m blushing!
      It’s truly my pleasure to connect with an audience that loves to grow food.

      And yes, sometimes my polycultures show up in neat patterns… sometimes they are a bit more chaotic (whatever I can pack in) 😉

  41. Dylan

    Hi, thanks for presentation. Was disappointed that downloaded ‘templates’ were a pdf. It would have been better if you had said this throughout the presentation. They are not really much use as a pdf – when people actually need and can use Excel documents…

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Hi Dylan – Thanks for the feedback. I find there’s a split in people who want paper copies that they can write on and people who want spreadsheets. Send an email to and we can hook you up.

  42. Betty

    I read all the comments and learned even more. You are a great trainer. Love your gardens. I am 70 and bending over is hard so I am cultivating old oval stock tanks. It’s a learning experience. Thank you so much.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Keep up the awesome work! You’re an inspiration that we can garden at any age and no matter what physical form our bodies take 😉

  43. Leza

    Stacey, this presentation is *wonderful*! If my dad were still alive, he’d be applauding you, too! Dad always had planting and harvesting charts he’d fill out every year. I doubt he did this with his family of gardeners when living in Hungary, but after coming to the states and moving from an apartment in LI to a home with a yard in NJ, I would watch him make charts like these every year. You took this to the next level–*love* it!!! 😀 I have moved to zone 4 (some winters we are zone 3…) from zone 5, and zone 6, so these charts will prove to be very useful! Thank you *so* much! Can’t wait for *spring*!!! 🙂

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Aw shucks! You’re so sweet.

      Glad to meet a lineage of fellow garden data junkies.
      Hope you’re crops are staying warm! Brrrr…. zone 3!

  44. Aprille

    Love this! I am a nut about recording data as well and I love love love charts – I keep a journal but hadn’t thought about creating a pest chart but I’ll definitely be doing that now! “Write it all down” has always been my biggest advice to new growers and I love that you’ve taken it to a whole new level! Excellent presentation!

    1. Stacey Murphy

      My pleasure!
      Sounds like you’re already on board and doing great things. Keep it up!

  45. seamonkey

    How much time per week does it take you to do all this record keeping? I appreciate that you said which templates to start with, but how do you save time and energy if they take alot of time to keep up with. Do you have a spreadsheet showing how much time you take filling out spreadsheets? haha 🙂

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Hello seamonkey!
      Great to meet a fellow analyst!

      I DO count my time with record keeping and analyzing ?
      The first year in creating the templates took the most amount of work (deciding what to measure to get good results). But now that I have a system in place… it saves me time. I just rinse and repeat using these templates.

      I spend a couple minutes each week record keeping and about 2-4 hours at the end of the season going through the data to find the trends I’m looking for and deciding on what adjustments I’ll make the next season.

      Like anything. If you’re just getting started with record keeping, track just one thing (I recommend harvest log) and see what that tells you before you invest a lot more time. Or start with one question you want to answer with the data to keep it really simple and just track that.

  46. Geoff Lawton

    Great stuff Stacey

    I love your presentation and if you need any help getting it out there further please feel free to get in touch through we have a huge outreach.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Thanks Geoff – I’ll be in touch!
      Strength in unity 😉

  47. Johan Swarts

    Hi there Stacey

    I also want to start with the crop planing spreadsheet. The one I download is pdf. Can u sent me a exel one?

  48. Sandrine

    I used to work with spreadsheets a lot, but didn’t use them much since we moved to Spain and started our little farm… I’ve been keeping records in a little notebook, but love the idea of “professionalising” and keeping records on spreadsheets! This is definitely the most useful presentation so far for me (and there were so many good ones already). Thank you Stacey!

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Hi Sandrine – this is exactly why I started using spreadsheets. I started an urban farming business in Brooklyn and could only spend time growing crops that made me money. Otherwise, I would go out of business! If you haven’t discovered them already… look up Budget Enterprise Templates for Farms. They are a common tool for small farmers.

  49. Dorine

    Loved it and learned so much. One question though…how do I enlarge the templates? When I printed them off I could not read them they were so small. Thank you.

    1. Dorine

      Is it possible to get it in an excel format?

    2. Stacey Murphy

      Hi Dorine – I believe we already emailed and you got the help you needed. Let me know if that’s not the case.

  50. Onecia

    Very nice, thank you for sharing.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      My pleasure! Honestly, I’m so blessed to have the opportunity to do this work.

  51. Mike Ohlhausen

    I originally started with a plethora of excel worksheets, but after the first year I got way beyond my ability to update them all, lol. I might start again, and try to pare down the amount of time I spend on them by using some of your templates, and sticking to the most helpful ones for me… try a reboot, lol Thanks!

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Hi Mike – I just said this same thing to Wendydarling. Paring down is a great idea…

      “Maybe to keep yourself inspired during the season… What’s the one question you want to be able to answer at the end of the season that you could answer with data. Take JUST THAT DATA and answer the question. I know it’s a long time to get an answer… but you will find a small victory and then the next season gather the data you need to answer 2 questions. I find it helps when you keep in the mind the bigger picture of what you are trying to learn from the data. Otherwise, it just feels meaningless. You can do it!!!”

  52. Wendydarling

    Really enjoyed this, Stacy. I’ve actually made a half-hearted attempt to collect various data but have found that half way through the season I’m too tired to keep up with it. You’ve inspired me to get with the program and try harder. . . or just do it! Thanks!

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Hi Wendydarling! Maybe to keep yourself inspired during the season… What’s the one question you want to be able to answer at the end of the season that you could answer with data. Take JUST THAT DATA and answer the question. I know it’s a long time to get an answer… but you will find a small victory and then the next season gather the data you need to answer 2 questions. I find it helps when you keep in the mind the bigger picture of what you are trying to learn from the data. Otherwise, it just feels meaningless. You can do it!!!

  53. Luana Hiebert

    I can’t see how to get the templates. I think I might find some of them useful.

    However, I think that she must not count the time she spends on keeping track of everything. I try to do some data tracking, and have a good system, but I’d rather spend time growing instead of constantly analyzing everything. I definitely will pay more attention, however, to when certain pests appear to be ready for them.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Hi Luana – You can download the templates here:

      You’re very observant.
      I DO count my time with record keeping and analyzing 😉
      The first year in creating the templates took the most amount of work (deciding what to measure to get good results). But now that I have a system in place… it saves me time. I just rinse and repeat.

      I spend a couple minutes each week record keeping and about 2-4 hours at the end of the season going through the data to find the trends I’m looking for and deciding on what adjustments I’ll make the next season.

      Like anything. If you’re just getting started with record keeping, track just one thing (I recommend harvest log) and see what that tells you before you invest a lot more time.

  54. tuffy

    wow-this was a brilliant, really fantastic, presentation. i love the idea of doing our best to mimic nature down to its own camouflage. many others talk about mimicking Nature (to great purpose), but this was different and really intelligent. kudos and thanks.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      My pleasure! Glad you found this helpful.

  55. Linda

    We caught your spreadsheet video earlier this year. The spreadsheet has been a great tool. It helps us get a feel for how climate change affects our growing season. It also has helped us with burnout. We don’t schedule heavy harvest times (and preservation) of crops that overlap. Thank you so much! Definitely going to implement the bug chart too.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Awesome Linda! It’s so true, when you start to see those patterns you can tell where you’re going to be working more than other times of the year and you can even it all out. So happy to hear this has been a useful exercise for you.

  56. Riesah Prock

    Stacey, I’m into the replay for 48 hrs and have tried the link to your bootcamp URL for geeks, but keep getting an error message. I’d really appreciate receiving your templates. Would you kindly email them to me please. I appreciate everything I’m learning from your ways of keeping records and how you grow and teach so many wonderful ways. Thank you.

  57. Riesah Prock

    Well, I’m persistent and somehow this time I was able to get them all. Thanks so much again, Stacey.

    1. Stacey Murphy

      Great! Love your persistence

  58. Annette Bissinger

    Great information and ideas. The template ideas are wonderful except I know I am not that organized to remember to log but I think I will at least use a notebook to log what I’ve done. I kind of giggled because being married to an engineer, I can totally tell, even had they not said, that she is an engineer.

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