Clyde's Vegetable Garden Planner
Clyde's Vegetable Garden Planner is an easy-to-use vegetable gardening slide chart for the home and hobby gardener. It was created in 1991 by Clyde Majerus, an industrial engineer and avid gardener from Grovespring, Missouri. By 2009, over 100,000 charts had been printed and distributed throughout the US and Canada.
The slide chart was first conceived in the early 1990s, when Majerus lived in Centralia, MO. He was attempting to plan the sequence of events in his 50'x120' garden around the upcoming birth of his third child, who was due in June 1991; Majerus wanted to plant beans in his garden so he would be available to help his wife in the delivery without having to worry about his garden going to waste. During that time, he happened to be studying time phasing as a part of his engineering day job; many manufacturing companies use a time-phased plan known as MRP (material requirements planning) for raw materials and parts requirements, in order to ensure on-time delivery of the final product. MRP involves using a horizontal calendar and planning backward from the customer’s expected delivery date. Beginning with a horizontally oriented calendar, Majerus scribed a line for the average frost date and a second line for the expected baby’s birth. Next, the various garden vegetables were listed, first to last, in order as they are planted relative to the frost date. Counting weeks from the frost to first planting date, Majerus realized that if the frost line could be made to slide, the chart would be useful as a tool for gardeners throughout the country.
Majerus obtained a copyright for the chart, had a batch of charts printed, and went into business. However, the chart was not initially well received, and the project sat idle for almost nine years until a friend suggested offering the garden planners on the Internet. It worked; since 1999, thousands of charts have been sold to gardeners and garden stores all over the United States, customized for business promotions, and offered in mail-order catalogs.