I live in CA. Glad to be here, I have been a non-subscribing member of DG for some time now but am currently trying out a 2 week trial membership.
I have been growing plants almost my entire life. Roughly around my teenage years I took and interest in medicinal plants and gained an interest in ethnobotany (the study of the relationships between the plant kingdom and human beings). My real passion with plants is carnivorous plants but I am also very interested in cacti, aroids, and really just about anything interesting or unusual, as well as plants that have a rich history with human beings. Plants that make you go "huh?!".
I very much enjoy plant trading and frequently give away plants to friends and potential recruits into the army of carnivorous plant freaks (though I am a tad short on freebies rout at this moment).
My question for all is, I am doing a trial membership and have to decide whether or not to subscribe. What so you feel are the benefits and shortcomings of the paid subscriptions? Do you think it is worth your money? If so why? What advantage does DG give you over other forums which are free for instance?
Thank you in advance for the warm welcome and I appreciate any input you can provide.
I "lurked" around here for about a month or so before deciding that I just HAD to pay for a membership (this was around March, I think, of this year). So far, I can see NO drawbacks or shortcomings.
What I do see is a place where I can come and chat and yap and yammer on about anything and everything yardening, to my heart's content, and always feel welcome to do so, indeed, encouraged to do so, and I learn something new here every day... literally. I've yet to "meet" a member who is less than friendly/welcoming/loving/encouraging/knowledgeable/sharing. I have found the over-all atmosphere here to be warm and welcoming, I felt like I "fit" and "belong" from the first moment I started.
Those are the reasons I find it MORE THAN worth the measly few bucks per year membership fee... worth it a million times over.
What advantages does DG have over other forums? Well, I have only ever peeked into other places from time to time, but from what I've read there and here, the biggest difference I can see is a lack of nonsense/drama/whining here... along with a lack of "cliques" here. Picture a "group hug"... with a clique, the circle is closed off TIGHT when a new-comer arrives... but here, that circle is opened WIDE to let new-comers in and be hugged too.
That is why I love it here and why I'll keep on paying to stay.
Now, about YOU! =) WOW, what cool interests you have!!! (Love the "plants that make ya go 'huh!?' " reference, heehee). Sadly my knowledge doesn't go that far... yet. Looking forward to learning more and reading all the cool stuff about what you know!
I hope this has helped, and answered your questions adequately, and I look forward to seeing you around in here! =)
Welcome, ayahuasca! I agree with all that speedie has said, but I did run across one or two bad seeds, or people that were having a really bad day. I was able to move past that, because they are vastly outnumbered by the great, positive, helpful people.
Also, the amazing amount of information here is more than worth the price of a subscription!
Hi Speedie and Ky,
Thank you for the feedback. I will say that the subscriber experience does seem very different so far from the non-subscriber. I have only been at the subscriber for a few days. As a non-subscriber, I have met a few people that I really like, did have at least one bad experience with a guy that was ripping people off (I later found out some very bad things about his past... I will leave it at that... caveat emptor). What few people I have met that share some of my interests has eclipsed that though.
I guess where my hestitation is, you are right it is a few measily dollars a year... but my experiences on other forums(free) has been very positive so I am trying to figure out what is special about DG that warrents paying for a subscription when much of this information I can get elsewhere. DG's big strength is that plant trading is not only allowed, it is actually encouraged. Most other sites discourage trading. The searchable tradelists are great but availible for free, I see advantages to subscribing because you can meet potential trade partners and read their contributions- just reading a trade list does not seem like enough.
Lots of good stuff. I am glad DG finally decided to make some trial time availible.
Most other sites actually discourage trading? How sad!
I think, when it comes to trading here at DG,a big thing is that you can take your time getting to know people first before you figure out where you are with that all-important trust factor. No one here is going to push or rush you, you can take all the time you need to get comfortable with people first before you take that next step. While we do encourage trading, and try to make it as easy and positive as possible, we also encourage the building of trusting 'real' friendships. The site, as a whole, is based on truth and treating people right, and The Powers That Be here really *do* work to make sure we maintain the dignity and respectfulness that this site, and its members, deserve and want to enjoy. They really honestly CARE that we (all) maintain a respectable family-friendly place to visit. To me, this speaks volumes and is why I love it here so much.