These 7 Apps Will Help You Identify Unknown Plants And Flowers

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Know immediately if your child has a handful of Virginia creeper or poison ivy.

Did your child just find some Virginia creeper, or did she dig up a handful of poison ivy? Identifying flowers, leaves and trees can be useful, educational and even entertaining. But while you can attempt an online search if you’re not sure what something is, googling “white star shaped flower” can turn up hundreds of pages of possible results.

Using an app made to identify growing things can be so much simpler. Just snap a picture or enter some info and you’ll quickly discover what type of flora you’re viewing. This collection of top plant and flower identification apps for both Android and iOS will help you choose the one that suits your needs.

1. PictureThis

This app, which uses AI to identify flowers and greenery, is extremely easy to use. You can upload a photo from your phone or snap a picture and wait while the app determines the type of plant.

Note that the app may provide several similar choices. Also, it may provide a name with which you are not familiar, but which is absolutely correct for the plant in question. For instance, when I uploaded a photo of bluebonnets, it returned an ID of lupine (the state flower of Texas is in the lupine family). Likewise, a flower known as a devil’s paintbrush in one region might be called fox-and-cubs in another. Luckily, the app provides the Latin name for the plant, too.

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Picture This

2. Garden Answers Plant Identification

You must create an account and log in to use this app (or you can opt to log in via Facebook). You can also link to your Pinterest profile, if you choose. Then, just take a photo of a plant or upload one from your phone. The app will then provide multiple options, from which you can choose the best match. Once you make your selection, the app provides detailed information about the plant. Tip: If you get a server error, rebooting your phone should do the trick.

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This free app, developed by scientists from four French research organizations, uses visual recognition software to scan a photo from your gallery or camera and provide potential matches. When you upload a photo, you are asked to choose leaf, flower, fruit or stem to receive the best results.

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PlantNet

4. What’s That Flower?

This app, which is only available for Android devices, works a bit differently than most others. Rather than using a photo, you begin by selecting the color of the plant you wish to identify. Next, select the habitat where you viewed the flower, and then the number of petals. After this, you’ll be presented with multiple potential options. This app could be helpful when you view a flower but are unable to take a picture of it.

Download from Google Play

Adrian Benko

5. SmartPlant: Identify & Care

To use this app, you must either create an account or use Facebook to log in. Once you’re logged in, you have the option of taking a photo or selecting one from your gallery. The image is then sent to expert horticulturalists who attempt to identify the flower, leaves or tree.

The app is free to download, and you receive two free photo submissions when you download the app. After that, you receive one free ID per month, although you can purchase more or upgrade to the premium version. This is not an instant process (in some cases, it can take a week or more to receive an answer). If you have an unusual plant, professional help might be worth the wait.

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Download from Google Play

SmartPlant App

6. Virginia Tech Tree Identification

This app is specifically for identifying trees found in North America. To begin, the app requests the location where you spotted the tree. You can use your phone’s GPS, your network or enter the location. Next, you’re given a list of trees common to the area. To narrow your options, you can answer several questions, such as the type of leaves, flowers and other attributes of the tree. In addition, you can type in keywords that might help in the identification process. Finally, you can send a message to Dr. Dendro at Virginia Tech if you just can’t find what you’re looking for.

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Virginia Tech

7. GardenTags

Last but not least, GardenTags is more than simply a plant identification app. After registering, you can catalog your garden and find inspiration from other garden designs. However, if you do want to use it to find out what type of plant or flower you’ve discovered, you can upload a photo and ask the community to help you make an ID. Think of it as crowdsourcing plant information. You can also upgrade to the premium version for other features, such as creating a journal and establishing gardening tasks.

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Garden Tags

Do you think you could use an app like these?

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These 7 Apps Will Help You Identify Unknown Plants And Flowers

by tysl time to read: 4 min
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