“Picture” Your Future Garden with Our Plant Identifier Tool

Become a garden expert with our plant and flower image search tool

Are you the type who snaps a picture whenever a new plant catches your eye? You’d have plenty in common with us on the Spring Hill Nurseries team. There are the plants that melt your heart whenever you see them, and you want to keep them in mind when you’re planning your next garden bed. Then there are the blooms you’ve never seen before and want to try finding online. (We know, we’ve done the vague google searches for that one dark purple spiky plant that just looks so cool…)

If you have these pictures cluttering up your phone, take them over to the Spring Hill Nurseries website. There is a new feature in the search bar that lets you identify a plant by a picture, and it is surprisingly entertaining.

How to identify plants with photos

• The Garden Answers app can identify over 20,000 plant species.
• We’ve added the Garden Answers app to our search bar, letting you upload a picture of the fruit, flower, or foliage you need to identify.
• Learn more about your plant, and make a purchase right from the Spring Hill website.

The way this new search tool works is through our app, Garden Answers. Not to brag, but it is the #1 downloaded gardening app right now. And it’s different than the others we’ve seen, especially because of its most exciting function—the photo identifier. This app can instantly identify over 20,000 plant species and give detailed information on all of them. This wealth of information is a home gardener’s greatest tool, so we’ve added the Garden Answers plant identifier straight into our website search bar. Just upload a picture, and it’ll pick out plants that look similar to your image and give you a best match, plus a couple other possible options.

We’ve found that we get the best results with pictures that focus on fruits, flowers and foliage. Instead of getting big masses of the plant or lots of other details in the background, it’s good to really zoom in to one bloom or leaf. We’ve had varying results with big tree pictures, so it’s best to zoom in on a few leaves to give it something specific to identify. Things like roots, seeds and bulbs aren’t going to pull much of anything, so it’s best to keep your pictures above the soil line.

Sometimes, there’s a variety of this species available on the Spring Hill Nurseries website, so you can get the garden look you’ve been eyeing delivered right to your door. But even when it’s not a species we carry, you’re going to know what plant you’re looking at, instantly. You’ll have a name to work with, and other similar plants if you’d like to put your own spin on it. You learn a lot about plants this way, and it feels good to be the resident plant expert.

Great news: Phones full of flower photos are coming in handy

All of us here in the office (or home office, right now) are learning so much about the plants growing around us. For instance, we uploaded a shot of a flower one of our team members had seen in a neighbor’s garden. The flower was strange and beautiful, and it grew up a vine along a shared fence. After using our new tool, we learned it was an unusual variety of Clematis, and although we don’t carry that specific variety, we have others with really unique flower structures; so they could copy their neighbor without really copying.

The magic wand for planning your next great landscape

There’s a time this tool is going to really be helpful, and that’s in the planning stage. If you’ve got a new garden bed you’re carving out, a new home you’re landscaping or you just want to give your garden a makeover, this clever search tool is going to be your new best friend. If someone solved a landscaping problem in a way you want to mimic, all you have to do is snap a picture. When you’re walking around the block or in a public garden, really, wherever someone’s great planting idea has made you stop in your tracks, just remember to get the photo. Now you have that great idea in your pocket, and you can ID what they used instantly to recreate that stunning show. Or why not go with some similar plants, or unique species and reimagine the scene in your own style.

Chasing clouds with the Spring Hill image search tool

Here’s my own experience with the search. There is a charmingly landscaped park at the end of my street. Of course, I already had plenty of photos on my phone when this search tool came out, but you can bet I took a walk around the block to see what else I could find. There was one plant in particular that I had in mind, something that always cheered me up. It had masses of soft little white blooms that make it look like a puffy white cloud. All around the park, wherever they put this plant, it just made the whole space feel whimsical.

I took pictures of all sorts of plants on my walk, because, well, how could I resist? It’s like you have an expert following you around and answering all your questions. For the cloudlike plant, I got a close-up of one bloom with others in the background. The image search took me to Achillea. Turns out, there’s one of these on our site, Peter Cottontail Achillea, so we all know what’s in my future garden.

Really seeing the world around you

Here’s the unexpected takeaway we’re just discovering. Whether the plant you’re looking at is or is not sold on the Spring Hill Nurseries website, you’re going to learn more about the plants all around you. As we play with this new picture ID function, we’re interacting more with the gardens in our neighborhoods and the nature around our town. We’re taking time to seek out those gardeners whose style we’re loving. We’re stopping, smelling the roses, and taking a pretty picture while we’re at it. All in all, we’re actually seeing what actually lives and grows outside our windows, and that’s kind of special.

To download our Garden Answers App, please use the options below.