Testing Plant ID Apps

Hey again, it’s Jason from Fraser Valley Rose Farm and recently I’ve been geeking out by going through a bunch of plant ID apps for my Android phone and seeing which ones do really well Identifying plants and which ones don’t do so well at all. I thought I’d share those results with you today It’s not exactly the right time of year to go shooting flowers in bloom in the field in my climate So I had some his images saved on my phone that I used as test subjects on these different apps the plants that I had in these images I want to see how close it came for genis and species so I had rudbeckia subtomentosa Eryngium giganteum Asclepias incarnata and cornus kousa and I wanted to see how well the apps came up with those Genera and species and scored them accordingly The first day apps I’m going to talk about here is the only one that I will not recommend So I’ll get this one out of the way right away It’s a map that was called Plant Lens and it had a relatively low reading on the Android store But it was right at the top of the sponsored list. So I thought I’d give it a try had the reading of 3.5. I Downloaded it and I have to say first of all that it hits you up right away with all sorts of screens trying to get You to sign up for a subscription its subscription is relatively expensive It comes out to about one hundred and forty-four dollars a year after some maneuvering and gymnastics I was able to get through to a screen where I could try out the plant ID and The results were awful It only got one out of four of the different pictures Correct and kept on hitting me with ads and splash screens trying to get me to sign up for the app So this one is in the category of truly awful and I wouldn’t recommend it So I’ll move right on to my next one. The next one I tried was another one that’s done by the subscription model It’s called picture this and this the subscription on this one is only about $30 a year So big difference in the price is there it also offers a fairly hassle-free 7-day free trial so I signed up for that right away and have a look at how it did on the plants and remarkably better it was up to an 88% which means it thought all of the Genus right and Just one of the species it didn’t get correct in my trial of these four test plants that I had I will also say that with that subscription It looks like it has some other neat features that either allow you to connect with the community or share your Share your images or learn more about plants as you’re going along So I thought it was probably a fairly good value proposition. And again only about thirty dollars a year the third one I tried really surprised me it was called Plant Net and it was scored really well in the App Store up 4.5 in terms of its overall approval rating and So I wanted to see what this was about and actually it was outstanding. This one is completely free Doesn’t run ads so it’s a compute. It’s community supported project of education and research so it’s a public enterprise and and what I found when I tested it on the different plants is it was extremely accurate now one thing I will say about Plant net is that it was a little confusing in terms of its screens if you go on to the app, it’s gonna ask you first of all to choose a Flora group that you’re asking for I chose world flora because it was the largest and it gave me really really good results But there’s also ones where you can choose the floor of South America the floor of Canada useful plants and so on and I think that your results may vary depending on which database you signup for the Second thing it does is as you choose the picture if you close up on for instance Cornish kousa was one of my subjects You may say fruit instead of flowers so it asks you to specify between flowers bark fruit or other features and And that I assume will help it to ID correctly The picture wasn’t too much of a hassle, but it’s something different than the other apps So I thought it points it out here overall and had really really good accurate results And I have a lot of fun afterwards going out to the field and trying some winter plant ID with it So I’ll tell you about that in a minute. The fourth one. I tried was called leaf snap No, leaf snap is different in that. It is ad-supported So every time you do a plant ID, it’s going to ask you to watch an ad for 30 seconds or a skippable ad Which is no big deal I guess if it has good results that seems like a fair proposition to me as compared to the subscription model I guess maybe not as nice as plant net which was free, but Also fairly good One thing I did note about it, though And it had good results and good readings is that it seemed to follow the plant net IDs Almost exactly It asks the same questions whether to go for flower or bark or fruit and then it gives the same answers it almost seemed like it was just using the database of plant net and then Inserting ads to make some money off of it I don’t know if this is true or not But I can’t recommend it from the point of view of its giving me the exact same results as a free public supported or community supported piece of software and It makes me watch pads in the mean time so I would probably go back to plant net as my Recommendation because the results were just as good and you don’t have to watch the ads After testing the apps on those four initial images I had saved on my phone I thought I’d go out and have some fun trying them on winter landscape plants and see how they did and I have to say the one that stood out was Planting that I mean once I picked the world flora category It had no problem getting close to a hundred percent ID on everything that I showed it once I keyed in either it was the fruit or the flower or the bark one that I chose to look at was one called Acer griseum – the paper bark maple and That one has coppery coloured bark as well as a Distinctive peeling bark and once I told it it was the barcode is looking at plant net had no problem identifying It it also had a great time picking out anything that was flowering this time of year my hellebores. It had no trouble with The mahonia that was in the landscape. It had no problem with sweet box. It did straightaway So it it did a great job. It was a lot of fun So I’m feeling I’m gonna keep this on my phone because it’s free because it’s ads not no ads to watch anything else There’s no downside this app at all. So I’m gonna keep it on my phone I would say the other ones were all worthwhile for The time that I tried them with the exception of that plant lens Which was just garbage and I wouldn’t even keep it on my phone for one day. Alright, that’s it for the plant ID apps I hope you enjoyed and if you have any questions for me or even plant ID questions Let me know in the comments below the video and thank you for watching

18 thoughts on “Testing Plant ID Apps


    In Google Play, PlantNet is listed first when I searched that and shows "PlantNet Plant Identification" as the app title. The name [email protected] shows up in the description. Am loading it to take out and explore the winter landscape.

    It looks like this is a French initiative and their website plantnet dot org says:

    "The current context of biodiversity loss is reflected in an increased need for expertise and the dissemination of knowledge in the field of plant sciences and techniques. In view of the significant deficit of skills, knowledge and attractiveness of botany at the national level, it is urgent to reduce the divide between society and plant sciences, if we want to promote sustainable development of our cities and our campaigns respecting biodiversity.

    The objective of the project is to bridge the divide between society and plant sciences, on the one hand by promoting pedagogical innovation through new tools for professionals in land management, education and Scientific Culture. , Technical and Industrial (CSTI), and secondly by restoring the taste and desire for plant sciences to the general public and in particular to young people, through nomadic, playful and educational field tools."

    So, this really does sound like a nice app and the collection of images may be building their ability to improve the recognition of various plants. Also, that same organization (floristic dot org) created and app to aid in creating nature trails among other botany related educational products.

  2. Thanks for the tip, I just downloaded PlantNet for Iphone and it's working great on the pictures I have on my phone. Always enjoy your videos, how about a walk around your yard showing your hoop houses, greenhouses, planting fields etc. Always interested in seeing how professional nurseries run things. Thanks again and have a Happy New Year in 2020.

  3. I appreciate you taking the time to research, test and then share your results. Spring is coming ,,, every day is getting a little bit longer. Can't wait : ))

  4. I tested one app once but I dont remember the name and It failed completely even on a mint plant. I was like OK not downloading again anything like It😂. I guessI will try out PlantNet 😍Thank you. Please give us a turn around by spring and summer,my favorite plant is Lavender,I am looking for different species of Angustifolias,looking for Vincenza blue and White Lavender If I can get my hands on the seeds,hopeful the genetic comes in as heirlooms.

  5. My choice in last years has been similar:
    1)Picture this
    2) Plant net
    3) Plant snap
    4) Plant finder

    Basically that coincide much with your list. The bad side of Picture this, when collecting hundreds of specimens as I did, I could never reach the low half of my recognized plants list because of slow browsing thumbnail pictures. Also no search for comment word and that makes almost impossible to find some plant if you remember it by your own designation. Also no local names are recognized as data that could be entered – very much needed features for international users.
    The problem with these apps is they are ruther good for recognizing, but for anything else than that (searching, sorting, marking, logging) it has heen far from practical use IMHO. Also I have impression that development teams are not focused much on mentioned problems or people's demands, but they are after some network fancy features like browsing word maps for plants, or recent plant pictures gathered from all parts of the world and similar, while basic app efficiency is left behind.

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