Are you ready? It's time for our 14th annual photo contest! Enter your best pictures of the year, for a chance to win a calendar and annual subscription here. Hurry! Deadline for entries is October 21.
Many of you may already know (but many others may not be aware) that PlantFiles corrections are completed by this fine group of dedicated volunteer editors:
Joan is from North Dakota, and has been a member since 2001. She joined our PlantFiles admin team back in 2005, working on cleaning up our Iris taxonomy. Here's a link to her member page: http://davesgarden.com/members/Joan/
Mystic is from the southern U.S. (Kentucky) and has been a member of DG since September 2000, and a PlantFiles editor since 2004. Here's a link to her homepage: http://davesgarden.com/members/Mystic/
These members, along with three other former editors: PoppySue, Baa and growin have spent untold hours creating new entries and correcting existing entries, as well as suggesting ways to make PlantFiles better and more helpful to users and helping test system improvements.
When you send an error report (by clicking on the red "report an error" button near the top of each PlantFiles page), it is most likely answered by one of them, or - less frequently - by Dave or me. They also help keep PlantFiles as "clean" as possible, by editing and moving comments when needed, plus deleting duplicate entries and shuffling images within entries.
Yesterday, Dave tagged us with some snazzy new titles, so now you'll be able to know when you're corresponding with a PlantFiles editor/admin, or a DG admin.
One question we get occasionally is about the responsibilities and security access the PlantFiles editors have.
In a nutshell, the PF admins volunteer their time to handle error reports and do other editing work within PlantFiles. As such, they have the ability to change, move and delete images, comments and entire entries within PlantFiles. Their security access is focused on PlantFiles entries, so they're not the right person to ask to change a forum thread title, delete a forum post, or help you with sign-up, password or login problems. (Those issues are generally routed to Dave or me for handling, as we do have access to user profiles and can edit forums and posts.)
They each possess a broad range of knowledge of plants and nomenclature, which is why they were asked to help with this important effort. We hope that users will continue to cooperate with their inquiries and requests - if they need information to validate a plant or image you've added, please respond as soon as you possibly can. If they change or delete something you've done, please respect that they're acting within their scope of authority.
Any other questions or comments for our PF admins? I think I speak for them when I say we welcome your inquiries and suggestions (even if we can't act on all of them ;o)
I'd like to say, "Hi" and let you know how much I appreciate the importance of what you do. Recently I've been trying to add photos (and entries where necessary) for everything around me. Please do what you need to do with them. If I get carried away and sent too many, toss some [i.e., that extra tulip : ) ] If you have ANY questions or uncertainty, I'm happy to provide whatever info I can. Above all, I appreciate the importance of your job(s). I'm GLAD that you are there to keep things straight. Sheryl
Thanks for all of your hard work. I use the Plant Files all of the time to identify plants in my garden, and I don't know what I would do without it. Your contribution of time and dedication to the proper identification of plants means so much to all of us at Dave's Garden. Thank you for volunteering. Without your services, I would be one lost gardener!
Dear PF Editors,
Thanks so much for all your hard work!! I recently joined DG as a full member and have noticed that it is difficult to create names correctly for orchids in the database. I just posted a reply in one or two of the threads and have asked the Uber in the orchids forum about this, but please allow me to direct the query again, but to you all here. Is it possible, in the PF forms, to allow the entry of a "hybrid" or "grex" field as the alternative to the "species" field (no quotes), and to effectively limit the single quotes to the cultivar or clonal name? (and perhaps to dissuade the use of double quotes for the clonal name) There are two quick brief discussions of orchid nomenclature here: http://orchidweb.org/aos/orchids/orchids.aspx?sec=9 and http://www.canadianorchidcongress.ca/nametag.html just in case they might be of interest...
I'd like to add my kudos to the list here, PlantFiles is my first reference, then a Google search. You guys are great, I reach many gardeners with my presentations, and guess where I send them for info! Thanks for all the hours, Legit
I have been so grateful for the help I've received in putting information on the plant files. Sometimes I'm flopping around but I always get help. And I refer to the plant files constantly. Plus that sometimes it's fun just to wander through the plants and learn something. It is amazing the time, energy, and knowledge you give here. THANK YOU!
What do you think about tightening the requirements for naming orchids, especially the hybrids, in the PF database? Do you have any intentions to address the issue?
Perhaps it might be a made a sticky/requirement for people to check the names of their orchid hybrid plants before posting them...Here is the link to a post I just made in the orchid forum... http://davesgarden.com/forums/t/513583/
It's a good idea - but I'm not sure how we'd implement it. I'm very reluctant to have all new entries go into a queue for review - our editors are already overtaxed with the work they're doing; there's no one currently who can take on this task and ensure it doesn't create a bottleneck.
Happenstance is correct. And we have quite a backlog right now. Unfortunately, I've been squeezed for time each day, so I haven't had an opportunity to release some of the backlog directly into PlantFiles (when I do, not all will appear in the nightly newsletter.)
I'm hoping to have the time to sit down and review the images within the next 48 hours - which should help get most of the backlog into circulation where they can be seen by others ;o)
I also thank all of you for your hard work! It is a great help to identify plants. I do have a suggestion. I would like to see it show how long it takes for seeds to germinate. I start every morning off here at Daves and love this website. Keep up the good work!
Chuck, the majority of the information and entries you see is the result of many people, not just the PF editors.
Our PF administrative team (of whom I am VERY proud and grateful - and who deserves the kudos and thanks they've received here and elsewhere) keeps everything as accurate as possible. They spend time revieiwing entries and information, running down errors flagged by our system, and responding to errors reported by other users, investigating the report and editing the entry when necessary.
Hey guys, could you include a spot on how to Hybridize Roses, and other flowers? I need some pictures showing how to tell the difference between the Pistil, Stamen,Stigma, and anther. I need something to look at, as well as how to do it. Thanks, Krispi
That's (at least in part) what Garden Terms is intended to accomplish - gardeners can add "how-to" picture tutorials of basic and advanced gardening concepts, plus pictures or illustrations of plant parts ;o)
Then that means you need to encourage some of your fellow rosarians (or propagation folks) to post some photos - we supply the framework, but it's up to the DG community to share their own words and photos for the benefit of others ;o)
What is supposed to happen when we report an error? I thought that it would be looked at and removed by the DG people reponsible for maintaining the accuracy of the files. Instead, it was directed back to me to contact the person in error. I can assure you that's not going to happen.
ceejay, was it a picture involved in the error you reported, or was it another type of error? When it's a picture, what people usually do is post a comment on the picture, this is part of the thread for that picture in the PF pictures forum so the owner of the pic will be alerted that there's a new message, and they and others who watch that forum can see your comment and add their own thoughts. For other stuff I thought the admins took care of it though, all you had to do was provide some references to support that what you're saying is correct.
When you submit a photo to PlantFiles, one of the submission guidelines addresses this issue:
[quote]"Others may review your image and offer input if they believe it is incorrectly identified. You will receive an alert and hyperlink at the top of the PF homepage when someone comments on one of your images, and you should take their feedback in a constructive manner. You are also responsible for notifying the editors to confirm the image is correctly-identified or request to have it moved to another entry."[/quote]
It's not that our volunteer editors aren't willing to intervene in these matters, but the two people who have the most information on the issue are the submitter and the person who reports the error. For us to act as a go-between messenger between these two parties is inefficient.
And if we simply move/remove the photo on the suggestion of the one who reports the problem, that leads to more problems, as you can imagine if you put yourself in the shoes of the photographer who submits a photo and finds it has been yanked without an opportunity to weigh in on the discussion.
Most other errors are far less subjective. (For example, if a name is misspelled, that's usually quite easily verified and corrected.) Those we tend to handle in a more unilateral fashion ;o)
I think most people here would be open to clarifying questions on their pics...many people probably rely on the nursery tag that came with the plant to know what it is, and we all know how accurate those can be sometimes! So I'm sure nobody would care if you questioned what it was, either they would agree with you and thank you for catching the mistake, or if they have good reason to believe that it is what they said it is, then they'll tell you why they think that, but I don't think there would be any bad feelings either way.
While we're on the topic of photos, I'd like to ask another question. I don't care if others use my photos; I see them as providing an educational service. IOW, I don't need the copyright, nor does anyone have to ask me to use them. Is there any way that the copyright can be omitted, or is that just an automatic thing?
I just wanted to say how much I appreciate all the hard work on the plant files, I went to the nursery the other day looking for a plant to grow in z9, found one and asked for sure if it would, the owner came back with a print out from a garden site with the info., and guess where it came from :o)
I have been getting better acquainted with this great site, and I know will eventually subscribe :)
Question about the heading Propagation Methods in the Plant Files database: Why do you not have a category distinguishing Warm Moist Stratification (WMS) from Cold Moist Stratification (CMS)? Also, would it be possible to add the category "Cycle" as many shrub and tree seeds require a period of alternating CMS and WMS? Also how about adding a category about storing seed in refrigerator after harvesting with the options of (dry versus moist stratification)?
As you might guess, I am interested in starting trees and shrubs from seed, have had some succcesses, (pure luck, I think) but trying out some new species this year and finding it challenging to find accurate information about seed starting for these plant species.
I'd like to add what I have discovered about propagating certain species, but I would prefer the info. be as accurate as possible.
Thanks for all you do!
I am curious as to the classification system used for the plant files, many of the family designations such as Papilionaceae, Flacourtiaceae, etc. are generally no longer used by taxonomists following modern phylogenetic systems. I know that many people still utilize older classifications like Cronquist (1981), but I think it would be better if Dave's could follow a system that derives its classification from evolutionary relationships (like APG).
[quote="flabotany"]I am curious as to the classification system used for the plant files, many of the family designations such as Papilionaceae, Flacourtiaceae, etc. are generally no longer used by taxonomists following modern phylogenetic systems. I know that many people still utilize older classifications like Cronquist (1981), but I think it would be better if Dave's could follow a system that derives its classification from evolutionary relationships (like APG). [/quote]
If you wouldn't mind starting a new thread, this question would probably be best in its own thread in this forum.
I would like to add my voice to the congrats and thanks. I have worked at a garden center for 4 years now and often have used and loved the Plantfiles references, so I finally got around to actually joining. Two thumbs up for all the hard work. I understand all too well the sheer amount of work that it can take to process the amount of data a place like this must accumulate. Keep up the good work!