How do you deal with a lot of pictures of hostas

hostaLes(5)May 20, 2012

I haven't done a lot of photographic work on ANYTHING but my love of hostas is forcing me into it. This inquiry is not in regards to software used in processing photos, but the hardware you use to store your files.

I am only starting my 2nd year with photographing my hostas, and I only have 60 varieties. Oversimplified, that would seem to indicate 120 files, ie: a file for all of my pictures of hosta 'A1' in 2011, and now another for 'A1' in 2012 x 60. Then in a system showing each in a year by year progression in my care is another 60 files.

I might then like to store pictures posted in Hosta Forum of the same varieties I have so I know how mine should look; that is another 60 files. That would be a minimum of 240 files to keep organized and a lot of space on my hard-drive.

Not a person who sees a need to reinvent a wheel, but ways to make and keep it turning smoothly, I ask----"HOW THE H--- DO YOU DO IT? Do you work off your computer to CDRW, direct to external hard-drives, or what? Should there be a seperate forum regarding these questions or is it relatively simply done?



Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Gesila(MI Z5)


You can get an external hard drive if you're worried about space on your computer. You can get a 2 TB hard drive for $130.00. That's a whole bunch of space.

My hostas folder is 5 GB and I have about 1800 pictures stored in it.


    Bookmark   May 20, 2012 at 11:20PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
ilovetogrow z9 Jax Florida

Buy 2 externals. Back up your backup. I have learned that externals hard drives are not forever. Paula

    Bookmark   May 21, 2012 at 2:58AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

take the pic.. use the photo uploader for your camera ... and set it to add the date to the file .. on my cannon it ends up being something like:

DCS 05212012 001 ... and the 05212012 ... is the date ... and the 001 is a random number

then go to windows explorer ... find the C drive.. right click.. and make a new file called Hosta ...

then ... as you move the files from the camera folder [drag and drop] .... add the name ... so you end up with a list of files like this:

Abby 05212012 001
Limey 05212012 002
Molly 05212012 003
Zounds 05212012 004

and then.. in two months ... when you take more Zounds ... the date will be different.. as will the random number ... [and you need that number.. in case you take 3 pix of zounds in one day]

and when you move them to the hosta file.. all the zounds will group together.. and be in sequential order ... like this:

Abby 05212012 001
Limey 05212012 002
Molly 05212012 003
Zounds 05212012 004
Zounds 05282012 017
Zounds 06212012 104
Zounds 09212013 084

you want to do it by name ... because.. next year.. you wont remember the dates ... but the names will always come to you . ...

one other thing i do.. is first snap a pic of the name tag.. then the hosta.. and then.. after you name the file.. delete the tag pix ...

eventually.. in my hosta folder.. i had to add A, B, C .. sub-folders ... as i had a couple bazillion files in one folder.. so the sub folders made it easy ...

make any sense??

and if you have an apple.. your screwed.. lol ... not really.. but i dont know that system ...

there was an old post about this.. God only knows how many years ago.. or what the title was ... maybe someone will remember or have an old link ...

if you think about how the files are stored at the library ... a light may go on ... bob just adds any donated pix.. to the bottom of the pile ... you start at a main page.. with the A,B,C's .. then go into sub-files.. until you get to the name you want ... same logic ...


    Bookmark   May 21, 2012 at 7:43AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Ken-Part of what you said I have done (I think). I only would pick up from there. This next part I might have to sketch a flow chart to follow what you have said until it makes total sense. So that will take some time.

Do you work?
-On your hard-drive and then upload to a CDRW or external hard-drive.
-Do you work directly on an external hard-drive
-Do you have your backup on an external hard-drive or do you keep them in a CD

Does anyone make up a directory of some kind, like using Excel, to track photos?


    Bookmark   May 21, 2012 at 8:12AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Gesila(MI Z5)


I stopped using CD's to backup data a few years back when portable flash drives became inexpensive.

I have two folders on my hard drive. One called HOSTAS and one called GARDENS. In my HOSTAS folder, I have sub-folders for each hosta. Likewise in my GARDENS folder, I have sub-folders for each garden. I name each photo similar to Kens, i.e., Abbby 2012 05 12 001. It makes it a little easier for me to see the dates when I do a sort of the folder.

I also store a lot of data on those little SIMM cards. Our cars have adapters that can play music stored on them. Those little SIMM cards sure take up a lot less space than CDs.

I work directly to my hard drive and then backup to the external USB.

As far as my excel spreadsheet, I have a column that keeps track of whether I've taken a picture of the hosta for each year.


    Bookmark   May 21, 2012 at 8:57AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Les - I store all my pics on my main hard drive and have 2 usb hard drives as backups - one at home connected all the time and one at DW's work - they rotate every month. The usb at home actively backs up any pic, doc,or similar file as added or changed on the computer.

I name my pics somewhat like Ken, but since date is stored in file data already I add the year plant was added to garden and count if multiples. So.... pic with name Hosta 'Abba Dabba Do' (2)(06&08)-002 means....(2) quantity of 2....(06&08) for years purchased.... -002 is picasa3 adding an id when file name is duplicated. It's a little more work adding the years info but I'm a little obsessive.

I use the following folder system (catalog)-

Plants & Trees - one pic of every plant that doesn't have a specific sub-folder below
....Astilbes - one pic of each cultivar
....Bleeding Hearts - one pic of each cultivar
....Fauna - bird, bug and critter pics
....Ferns - one pic of each cultivar
....Heuchera - one pic of each cultivar
....Hosta - one pic of each cultivar
........Art - pics I have manipulated
........Diseased and Damaged - HVX, Critter damage
........Orders - pics of orders received
........ZZHosta - picks I didn't take
....Ligularia - one pic of each cultivar
....Lilies - one pic of each cultivar
....Plants and Landscape General - additional pics of all cultivars and some non-labeled general pics
........Deck - General Photos of this garden
........East -
........North -
........South -
........West -
....Shrubs & Trees
....Statues - statues and garden accents
Garden Tours with sub folders

Since all pics are tracked in Picasa3 - I can enter Abba Dabba Do within Picasa and all Abba Dabba Do pics will show no matter whether in Hosta, Leaves, Flower, Plant and Landscape General, .... If I need them sorted by date, I right click and sort by date.

More than you asked for, but maybe of interest to someone else.


    Bookmark   May 21, 2012 at 11:15AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Les, I also maintain a listing on a spreadsheet of my purchases - this one is always evolving. The sheet is in a table format so each of the top headers can be sorted...i.e. if I can't remember the name of a hosta in the north garden that I purchased from xyz - I sort seller, then sort garden or vice versa and can spot possible names. Or if I want to see what hostas I purchased from xyy - I might sort Hosta, then Year, then Seller to get a list of Hosta by year for each seller.

Also I can add a comment to any cell, which can be very handy. There is a little red triangle in first hosta listed which means I've added a comment. In this case it tells me when it stabilized and that it was moved in 2011.

What is not pictured are some pivot tables that summarize data by seller, year, count, hosta - so if there is something I routinely do a multiple sort of I could create a pivot table(s).


    Bookmark   May 21, 2012 at 11:53AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Paul; this was great! I would have eventually gone there. I have photos of my lilies, daylilies Heuchera,and others but am concentrating on Hostas right now.

You all have been great help and really give me something to think about. Good stuff when sitting at my computer is more likely than being outdoors working, eh?


    Bookmark   May 21, 2012 at 2:25PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
kentstar(5b, NE Ohio)

I use the Photobucket Pro and I also have the photos on Dave's Garden. I also have a spreadsheet of all my plants but I don't put the photos on that. My spreadsheet is for all other info that I want to include, like height, spread, planting instructions, etc, etc. However, I don't keep up with the spreadsheet as well as I should! But I DO keep up with DG website under kentstar-- "Cathy's Garden Journal".

    Bookmark   May 21, 2012 at 2:33PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I use a spreadsheet for a quick printable overview on the basics on my Hostas. Then I have a program called Microsoft One Note - It is an electronic notebook, so I have a "page" for every Hosta. You can add or delete pictures and information at will - better than a paper notebook because you can move things around (ie your latest pictures at the top with progression pictures below, and the yearly notes on what's happened to what plants etc). I have over 120 hosta and work directly on my hard drive, but can easily get everything on a thumb drive for backup, with tons of room to spare. The Notebook can be split into sections so you can also keep track of other plants like Heuchera and Daylilies etc or you can make separate notebooks for them.
Also, if you find info on the internet that you want to keep track of, you can cut and paste it into the notebook and it keeps track of the url for you. If you already have Microsoft Office on your computer, One Note might be in it

    Bookmark   May 21, 2012 at 3:29PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Tri State Hosta Sale
Tri State Hosta Society had a wonderful Sale today...
Bare Root!!!!
Sunday morning. End of march. Jonesing for Spring. I...
Who's going to the Annual AHS convention in Raleigh?
I live about an hour and a half west of Raleigh. Anybody...
Designer Genes
We still have 2 feet of snow cover here, although it...
Steve Massachusetts Zone 5b
Sponsored Products
Elite Cuisine Four-Slice Long Slot Cool Touch Toaster
$19.99 | zulily
15765WHT Textured White Kichler LED Mini Deck Light
Westinghouse Lighting Shades 5-1/4 in. Handblown Charcoal Swirl Shade with
$14.97 | Home Depot
Hampton Bay 10 ft. Silver Flex Track Starter Kit 77003-SV
$49.86 | Home Depot
Askance Floor Lamp in Black
$122.00 | LexMod
Burns Chair - Key Largo Grape Purple
Joybird Furniture
Ambella Home Collection - Barrister Credenza - 24014-340-001B
Great Furniture Deal
Willow 3 Drawer Coffee Table
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™