What do the milestones mean?


Flowering or blossoming of non-edible, decorative plants.


Early flowering/seeding of a plant before it develops its crop.


Putting forth branches; spread in branches.

Breaking Dormancy

Perennials; emerging after winter. Trees; starting to leaf out.


Protrusion on a plant, containing rudimentary foliage (leaf bud), the rudimentary inflorescence (flower bud), or both (mixed bud).


To eat or drink.


The process of digging up a plant, dividing its roots or rhizomes and replanting, selling or giving away.


In the state of inactivity; period of dormancy.


Approaching lifecycle end.

Dying Down

Lifecycle change of the plant; either end of life or going dormant.


To place in a secure position or condition; install


To improve soil fertility, and aid plant growth, by adding organic material or fertilizers.


The flower bud of a edible plant has to come out into full development (i.e. Tomato, Apple)


Bearing sizable fruit.


First signs of an emerging root from a sprouting seed.


For detailing growth or other visual changes not covered by other lifecycle events.

Hardening Off

Gradually exposing plants to outside conditions over a period of time.


The gathering of crops or seeds at maturity.


Plant physically changed location, but did not have its roots disturbed. (The aerial plant parts now have a new environment, but the roots were left alone. Or perhaps gardens were reclassified and nothing happened to the plant, except in the mind of its care giver.). Generally for plants that are growing too close together, or not growing well for lack of sun, too little or too much moisture, etc.


A covering; as of straw, compost, plastic, wood chips; spread on the ground around plants to prevent evaporation, erosion or to enrich soil, inhibit weed growth.

Planting Out

An indoor, greenhouse or nursery start has completed its hardening off process and is now being put outside permanently. Usually applies to annuals.


To transfer pollen from an anther to the stigma of (a flower); can be manual or nature based.

Potting Up

When seedlings move from one size seed pack to a larger one, or when a plant has become root bound and needs to be moved into a larger size. Plant has been taken from one pot and put into a larger pot. (This is important to know because then you know that the roots have more room, and by looking at different lengths of time between potting up you can see the curve of growth for the plant.)


To prepare fruit or vegetables by cooking with sugar, pickling canning or the like.


To remove branches, foliage or buds from a plant for health, productivity or visual reasons


Purchased at a business or plant sale


Plant has been taken from one pot and put into the same size pot. (The plant is not being given additional room to grow, but is probably getting new soil or a root trim, etc.)


First seeds did not germinate, planting new ones.


Product is close to harvest stage


The stage of yielding seeds

Setting Fruit

Blossoms have started to become fruit.

Showing Roots

Water plants, showing roots or from propagating cuttings.

Showing True Leaves

The first set of false leaves (cotyledons) start to wither and the first “true” leaves start to appear.


Usually reserved for seeds, bulbs and tubers, when they are first planted into a growing medium.


The seed, bulb or tuber has now appeared above the surface of the growing medium.


Thread like strands; putting forth tassels (i.e. corn)

Thinning Out

Seedlings are removed or clipped back to allow for more spacing between plants.


Plant has been taken out of soil and put back into soil somewhere else. (The reasons and details for this are various. But it is important to note that the plant did experience the trauma of having its roots exposed and messed with.)


Applying chemicals/organic treatments.

Under Attack

Being attached by a fungus or insect.


Seeds or tubers have been exposed to light and / or moisture to initiate sprouting before burying in a growing medium.


The plant has been damaged


The plant has been protected from possible frost damage.