Developer: Elizabeth Allen
Price: $0.99 Download on the App Store
Now that Spring has sprung and it’s time to get outdoors and start (or finish) those landscaping and gardening projects, we’re all looking for some ideas and inspiration. The App Store can certainly provide a variety of sources for outdoor projects, but just like in your garden, you’ll have to do some weeding. If you do a simple App Store search for “yard and garden ideas” one of the top results is the Yard and Garden Ideas Catalog by Runner Apps. Upon initial examination it appears to be a catalog of images of various garden and landscaping ideas, which could be handy solely for browsing for inspiration, but unfortunately the Yard and Garden Ideas Catalog provides no real value despite the dollar purchase price.
The Yard and Garden Ideas Catalog presents itself as an image catalog that can be filtered by yard type. The list of potential types and styles is seemingly extensive, ranging from front and back yards, to porches, patios, decks, European and American styles, waterfalls and even 1800s (for Victorian home owners). But sadly, the results for most categories are nothing more than a random, unrelated collection of photos that have nothing whatsoever to do with yards or gardens.
In both the front and back yard categories, the results are mostly images of various landscaping designs, providing a handful of inspirational images that may spark an idea or two. But unfortunately the “catalog” returns just as many irrelevant and unhelpful image results for nearly every other category and many of the included images simply don't display. It essentially comes off as nothing more than a collection of image results obtainable through any search engine. It does not offer any original ideas, no yard or garden tips, and doesn’t even link to the original source of the image. It merely supplies you with the option of emailing or saving an image – should you find one you like.
With a plethora of other options for getting your gardening on, there’s no benefit to a paid app like Yard and Garden Ideas Catalog. Opt instead to get started with something like Lowe’s Creative Ideas, which downloads for free into the Newsstand Library and Harvest Landscape Calculator by Harvest Power, Inc., which is also free and provides a simple calculator for determining the amounts of mulch, hardscape or compost required for basic landscape projects and also provides some yard and garden tips. As far as finding ideas for inspiration, skip the unnecessary and unproductive weeding through Yard and Garden Ideas Catalog – after all, there’s enough weeding to be done outside.