hehe I am the first one! It would be nice to have members able to come to more of the forums. They would be hooked! I did not subscribe for a long while mainly because I resented having to pay to see them! once I decided to go ahead and do it and was able to go to more forums I was hooked!
I love the journal feature, but would like some additions. The main feature wanted by me is the ability to have a secondary sort. My request have been posted on the "list", but no response about some, but that may be because I have a hard time trying to explain my wants. I would love to have a regional get together of other journal users to see how others use their journal and blog. Patti
I would like to see PlantFiles beefed up with more detailed propogation information specific to each plant. The entries that exist now tell me whether something can be grown from seed, needs to be grown from cuttings, can be wintersown, etc., but that's about it.
There is a lot of excellent propogation information here on the site, but finding it can be a frustrating exercise. I usually end up going offsite just because it's easier than sifting through 10's of thousands of posts in different forums.
Having the information attached (through a hyperlink perhaps) to each plant entry might serve to reduce the frustration of some long term members who are asked to trot out yet again the how to's of that specific plant, the frustration of some new subscribers who are pointed to another forum/thread/post for the information they have requested, and may even draw in more subscribers to become members when they see how comitted to serving the customers' needs DG really is. Something as simple as making information highly visible and easy to find earns huge points with the public.
I miss having the plant files button up front. I came to DG because of the plant files. They are a fantastic resource. But having to go through several stages to get to the plant ID start page is time consuming. I sort of hate this on a web page. You used to see the Plant Files button at the top, push it and you were there. I still love the plant files and they are still fantastic, but make it easier to get to once more.
I would very much like it if Non Subscribing Members could Not D-mail the Subscribing Members.
I also agree with the above post that non members be allowed to view more than the first post But not be able to make a post or D-mail a subscribing member. It would probably get more people to subscribe
[quote]I miss having the plant files button up front. I came to DG because of the plant files. They are a fantastic resource. But having to go through several stages to get to the plant ID start page is time consuming. I sort of hate this on a web page. You used to see the Plant Files button at the top, push it and you were there. I still love the plant files and they are still fantastic, but make it easier to get to once more.
And I quite agree with that! It is the best most useful feature behind DG and you have to search for it?
Also, as a one-time subscriber now a member I don't think more forums need be open to members only. I believe all the beginner gardening are open to members and others really should be more "private" for those who pay.
But I do think it would be appropriate had someone once been a subscriber to still have full access to threads THEY started. I see replies made to my old threads and have no way to update or check on them.
I would love, love, love a link directly to "plant files" on every page so when I'm reading a thread and particular plants are mentioned that I'm unfamiliar with, I can go right to that plant page file by typing in the name while still on the thread. This would be a great convenience for many people, imo.
I also voted to improve a "feature," but should have voted to improve "navigation." If the plant file page could open up in it's own window so we wouldn't lose "our place," that would be especially wonderful!
I voted other. I would love to see a plant file feature on the front page when I log in.
It would also be nice if there where a way to speed things up on Mondays. Just trying to post a vote here took almost 3 minutes to load. Mondays are bad, and it seems as though everything is slow here.
DG does already notify us of d-mails via e-mail. I came home and had several notifications in my personal e-mail.
I'd really love to have a more effective search engine for the whole site complete with a means by which to narrow down results by excluding PlantFile or Watchdog entries as well as the ability to search for more than one word at a time. This particular search engine used to work considerably better than the (: search forums :) button at the top of each thread- http://davesgarden.com/search.php
Currently it only pulls up articles, discussion forums, plant files, and gardening blogs. No more links to individual threads like what we used to have.
Don't know that I personally would want any more forums open to non-subscribers since we've got the Gardens.com site. I liked it when the regional forums were all shut down to non-subscribers.
I'm kinda on the same page as DonnaB about d-mail being only for paid subscribers.
Love everyone's idea about a "hot" button on every screen to take us directly to Plant Files! I have found it easier to whatever thread I'm on, google: detailed information for _ _ _ (whatever plant) and it usually gets me right to the one I want, but sure would be easier for this lazy ole gal to just hit a button on whatever page I'm on!
Maybe non subscribers when they sign up could be given say a 5 or 7 day access to all forums ... I bet after that seven days was up there would be a lot more folks subscribing!
I can't think of many things that would make this site any more wonderful than it already is! I think it is run in a very professional manner and I don't know of too many other places that would even ask for opinions and then implement them! Dave & Co. know how to do things the right way!
Yes, FlowrLady - that is a great suggestion. I went to the member list a few days ago looking for a non subscriber for another DG'er who wanted to send a d-mail to that person. I found the list but names were not alphabetical, rather listed by the date they signed up (I think) ... the person I was looking for, I found on page 218. It only took me a minute to figure out how they were listed, so I just went to the very last page and back tracked, but I'm an alphabetical type person ... less steps the better. LOL.
I have no objection to those that want a E-mail when they get a D-mail but it is not something I want. I check DG often enough and they are right at the top of the page. Please put a link in the prefrence page for those that want e-mail notification for D-mail.
I also think the Journal could be improved. The one thing I notice is that when I am looking at my journal, I think there should be a link to the Plant Files entry while at the main list of items - currently you can view your entries, add, delete, etc. I'd like to see a "view PF entry" link as well. Right now I have to go into the Journal entry first before I can do that.
Other than that, I find the Journal a little clunky but not sure exactly what other changes / improvements to suggest, since I haven't been using it that long.
Agreed that the PlantFiles is probably the #1 feature on this site and should be easy to get to from any page.
Hey - just had an idea! What about making a customizable "Quick Menu" that each member can customize to their own needs, which would then appear on every page? Then each person could put the PF link or whatever else is useful to them. For subscribers only, of course.
Overall - DG rocks! Y'all are doing a fantastic job and it's awesome to see how user comments become real features and improvements on the site. Keep up the great work!
I totally agree about dmails from subscribers only.
For sure a better thread/forum search feature. Maybe an advanced search, where we can type in multiple words. And possibly a way to sort results. I really like the + - feature on google or ebay where I can omit certain words using the minus and use the plus to insure that every word with it has to be there to show in the results. Does that make sense?
As for the plantfiles button or tab, I can see that's a problem for some, for myself though, I use mozilla firefox and have the little search box on the toolbar set to Daves garden and I just type in my plant and it takes me right to plantfiles.
I think members see enough.
I don't see the need for more subscriber only forums.
There, thats my 2 cents on all the questions that I have any opinion about. And probably not even worth the full 2 cents...LOL
I was a subscriber for 2 years and barely had a couple dmails from non-subscribers so I don't see that as a big issue? Are others being bombarded by it? As a member I still enjoy dmailing a few DG friends and it's one of the few features you can use in full as a member only.
I would like to see threads started by a subscriber who goes member still be open to the person who started them.
Voted for more forums members only because we don't want it to become like another garden and home site that I shall not name, which is great, actually, but they have had lots of problems and DG is Great. I love it.
I agree with the above. Having easy access to the plant files is needed.
- I think it would be easier & quicker if the main Tabs at the top of the pages had either 1) drop-down menus, or 2) if they spread the choices across the page just below each tab as you moused over it.
- I agree that a Plant Files button on each page would be nice, especially if it opened in another window so we could easily look something up.
Overall, I have to tell you this is an amazing board, functionally speaking - a testament to Dave's programming skills. I've run boards, and I visit tons of them, and this one really stands out with it's functional capabilities. :))
I would also like to see an improved search feature. On the homepage there are modules that also searching of trade lists, journal, etc. Could one be added with the quick plant search, forum search, and maybe a whole site search? One text box with radio buttons to select the part of the site you want to search would be really nice.
One other thing would be to order the search results by popularity. When I use google for instance, the most popular sites are listed first. In DG I can't figure out how the results are ordered. If I'm searching for "whiteflies on houseplants" it would be nice to see the threads that have a lot of posts about whiteflies or that other people have tagged with those keywords. Getting results with long threads where whiteflies and houseplants appear somewhere in the thread, but that's really not the topic of the thread, is less useful.
On the topic of pests, I think the idea for adding a pest section to the PlantFiles pages would be really great ( I saw this on a forum a few months ago). I know we don't have a diseases database but it would be nice to have links to bugs that commonly attack the plant you're interested in (added by members of course). I think you can currently add the link in the feedback section but you would have to look through all the feedback to find the links.
I know those might be major projects for the design team but I think they would be nice additions.
i didn't have time to read what everyone else said but it's the plant files to me too. it's frustrating for me to have to go hunt that up now. plus if the files could be improved to make it easier for non biology majors to find plants. and truly i have a good working knowledge of latin botanical names. i can't imagine how someone without that could find the files useful at all. i find lots of things on the plant files by googling. but not directly from the plant files. also, i wish there could be a concerted effort to get hardiness ratings more correct. also wish that somehow when we post that we have a plant that we had a place to click WHERE it's growing..as in inside/outside esp. but in an ideal world there would be helpful hints such as "up against a house", "full texas sun". all the little pertinent details that has given a person a certain success with a plant.
and if you do the plant files i wish you would think of some way to make the bug files workable. i don't know but maybe categorized somehow by the plants themselves. maybe on the plant files could be listed which bugs like that particular plant. i rarely use the bug files as i guess i just don't get how to work them.
but please put plant files back on the top headers of the home page. after you do that i'll be able to tell you what else bothers me but that one sticks out so bad it's hard to find fault with other aspects of daves right now. lol.
Tir_na_nog, good point about wanting to dmail friends, that WOULD eliminate that, so maybe the subscriber only dmail idea would not work. I was only joyously thinking of the member dmails that I commonly refer to as "moocher mail" stopping, not about the rest. LOL
Thanks for claridying Pudgey! I've had a few moocher dmails to ;). I just ignore 'em. LOL!!!!
Mama, good point that it seems plantfiles often needs botanical names. It's hard when you don't know the names to do proper searches. But:
[quote]also, i wish there could be a concerted effort to get hardiness ratings more correct. also wish that somehow when we post that we have a plant that we had a place to click WHERE it's growing..as in inside/outside esp. but in an ideal world there would be helpful hints such as "up against a house", "full texas sun". all the little pertinent details that has given a person a certain success with a plant. [/quote]
Is this not helped by the zip code report on each plant plus people's comments at the bottom of each?
I would like to see the plant files search feature improved. Sometime I use it to find a specific plant, and it comes up with no results. I then put the same terms in google, and a daves garden page for that plant comes up.
I think this is an amazing place and I only give thanks for it ...the only thing I can think of that is frustrating and it probably cannot be fixed is the thread you spend a few mins typing up and posting a picture only to see it go *poof* and go missing because I am on broadband ...if I could have one wish it would be the ability to save it instead of it going poof. I love daves garden!
I had to put other...only because i can't think of anything that needs to be changed...I am very happy here and have not one problem now or since the time i joined...knock on wood...knock, knock, knock...
Thanks Dave and crew for a wonderful site. If i need advice on ANYTHING or just something to do at 3 am when i can't sleep this is an "AWESOME" site.
So please keep up the good work and I like all the others love ya for what you do for us...I know we can be a big pain in the batooka sometimes.
One idea would be to take one of the wonderful articles written by one of our members, and set it up as a tempory community where we could ask questions, discuss the new information, and generally learn more on a topic.
Another thing that I would like to see is a "To Do List" by regions. Tomorrow is the first of April. What should I be doing in the garden this week/month. How about just some general reminders, like check your forcithia. If they are blooming, it's time to Preen for the crab grass! Perhaps it looks more like a list that members where could add theri suggestions. After a couple of years, we could probably have a data base for newbies and great remindrs for the experts.
Finally, I'd love for the ubers and master gardeners to have feature space. :)
And I love the logo idea-- but I'd really like to have a high quality gardening apron with the Dave's banner across the center of the bib. That would be sooo beautiful!
Thank you for providing a cool meeting place where I can be a compulsive gardener & it's not only OK, but might be normal.
I voted to improve navigation. I'm a newbie. I complete a data form, click a tab up top to browse around the site, and then I can't figure out how to get back to add another entry.
Please consider the following solutions:
1) add scroll-down or expandable sub-menus to major menu headings
2) make a better distinction between links that lead to "view" vs. "edit" with regards to the member profile and trade list
3) Enable the site to recognize when logged in users view their own data and provide an edit link (or button) IFF the user being viewed and the login match. (Use login cookie as affirmation?) Add this feature to all data tables: personal, plant, pest, whatever. I'm sure the security on such a feature is rather complicated, but I have seen similar customization on other sites.
I would like to see the winter sowing/propogation database fully integrated with Plant Files, so that it is possible to search for a plant in Plant Files and then pull up propogation/winter sowing reports for the plant from there and then filter/sort by zone. That would be so incredibly, amazingly awesome!
I voted 'other'. I would like for it to be possible to start writing a post and then scroll up to read something or enlarge a pic and have the post I was writing still there! Can't count how many times I've 'lost' my post-in-progress because I went back to look at the pic I'm commenting on again!
1. I would like a DG mug too ; )
2. I like Pyewacketcat54's idea about having different forums for open/closed co-ops. Great idea!
3. I like the idea about Plant Files being acessible while looking at the forums.
I'd like a litte DG ribbit for my crocs and another style for the kiddie crocs
I'd like davesgarden knee pads made out of croc material
I'd like a DG eyeglass holder for round the neck. Maybe made and sold by our more talented DGers.
I'd like it if because we are a subscriber to DG we could get buying power at some of the large big box stores and even at some of the smaller shops if they would go for it. So, if a subscriber or member we'd get ____% off purchases or specials. Or get the DG "card" stamped 10 times by shopping at a nursery and the 11th thing is free. Something like that.
I'd like to see a scholarship area where some folks with the means and interest could contribute what membership money they could and a new subscriber would be invited for a year --hopefully by the next year the recipient of the year membership might if possibly pay it back and be a contributor to the scholarship fund --or even if there was a memory fund set up where folks could contribute a dollar for those they want to honor (names printed all in a single thread) and that dollar could go to scholarships for those that need help.
I don't know if there is a way this can be dealt with. I've had Dmail's from folks asking me how much I want for this or that. I look at their profile to see that they just signed up before sending the Dmail. I totally ignore these Dmails as I know they just want the plant or seed that they asked about and they are gone. If there were a way to avoid these types of things... like say they had to be a subscriber for 30 days before Dmailing a subscriber... that might work. I dunno. Since I've had them, I'm sure other DG folks have too.
I voted improve the navigation because Plant Files is too unruly and I hate clicking 3 times just to get to the bar where I can input the plant name.
I also want a live clickable link that says "Plant Files" available from every screen, in other words, back on the menu bar without the Guides and Info clicking. I suggested it before and was told there is no more room, and yet there is plenty of room on my screen.
I would also like an advanced search available on the first try, but I'm sure no one knows what I am talking about.
Wow admin, sounds like PF navigation is a must! :) YEAH!
Missingrosie: I like your way of thinking! [quote]I'd like it if because we are a subscriber to DG we could get buying power at some of the large big box stores and even at some of the smaller shops if they would go for it. So, if a subscriber or member we'd get ____% off purchases or specials. Or get the DG "card" stamped 10 times by shopping at a nursery and the 11th thing is free. Something like that. [/quote]
I would like to see the plant listings of a contributor like Farmerdill in a more orderly fashion.
Farmerdill literally has thousands of plants, mostly if not all, vegetable cultivars that he's commented on. I would like to see those categorized so searching for one type of a plant is not so difficult.
I'm sure Farmerdill is not the only UBER who has added many comments however as I live in the same zone he lives in, I find myself looking to his comments for advise on which cultivars grow best in our area of the country.
It is difficult to search for one plant among 4,000 or so.
Is it possible to group by category?
I LOVE DG and I know its made me a better gardener. I cannot say how very valuable I find this site. Did I mention I LOVE DG!
I would like to see a more detailed search engine, like being able to sort by date and also having a "not" function.
As someone else stated, I'd like a Plant Files search button on the home page. Also, I'd like to be able to change the default for the Plant Files search so that the listings were automatically in alphabetical order instead the current default, which is by popularity.
I'd like to see a column added on the Thread watcher that allows you to click on it to unwatch it. As it is, I have to actually open the ones I'd like to stop watching, especially the game threads. I have a ton on my thread watcher that I just don't have the time to click on each one individually to then go and click close/unwatch.
Ummm, I'd like to be able to insert graphics without having to know basic html. It would be great to just click a button to make my text bold or italic, or to insert a quote. I can never remember all the codes and often have to look them up. And smiley's... can we have smileys? I thought I saw a thread about this in the DG forum but I can't find it, so maybe it's been covered already.
Great suggestions everyone, I would like the Plant Files Button on every page , that would be great.
How about a Bird ID file. I need help Iding some of these birds around on the homestead.
I was wondering if having a comment box on the blogs. Some blogs are more then just telling about their day but ask questions, so that means a person would have to D-mail an answer. But the thing is those that are reading my have the same problem and will never know if there was an answer. Kinda like before i joined i would read a thread and could not read any answers, that sure made me want to join DG.
Forgot to add, make the blog comment feature so one could turn it off and on for comments if they choose.
I love it here, I said it b-4 this is the best thing I did for the New Year.
Dave and others , High Five for a great site : )
oh, can we have smilies added to our wish list : )
I'm not sure if this has been addressed in any previous message or not! So - here goes! I'd like to see an area for the new folks (non-paying) to be able to come here for information, conversation, advice, whatever the reason, etc. Just a place for them to be able to 'get to know what Dave's is all about.' After awhile - they may join this great society of gardeners. I know when I first 'visited' and wasn't allowed to 'see' any threads - I wanted MORE! lol! Glad I joined! I've met some GREAT people here on Dave's & have NO regrets!! (Thank you Dave!) And thanks to ALL for making Dave's what it is today! :)
First, let me say that DG is hands-down the best website around. The functionality and "user-friendliness" of this site far surpasses any other similar forum-type site I've seen. And Dave and the DG folks are the most responsive ever when it comes to customer service. Thanks!!!!
Things I would love to see:
1. ability to edit a d-mail post
2. plant files - make generalized search more prominent/easy to get to. Perhaps most people use the more specific search - but I always go first to generalized search and type just the words I know, but it takes a few clicks to get there (lazy!!!)
3. I agree with giving us the option to define in our preferences whether we want email notification when we have d-mail
4. Search - I find that I seldom get the results I'm looking for when I use the search feature. It doesn't seem to work very well - but it might be user error!
5. Tagging system - I find the new tagging system a little confusing. I haven't really tried to figure it out - I'm sure I could if I tried. But I suspect a lot of people won't use it unless it is more intuitive.
Is it possible under Guides and Information to have a BIRD FILES?
I LOVE Plant Files and look up plants on a daily basis, sometimes many times a day. It would be great to have a Bird File to be able to check out photo's and learn about different birds. I know there are thousands of birds out there and it would take up a lot of space but there are so many of us bird lovers who would really use something like that.
I just subscribed, don't know what I was waiting for all this time. Can't believe what I've been missing, wow, it DOES getter better with a subscription! My only suggestion is a tab for the plant files on each page. Now it's time to do some further exploration on my own...
I wish paid members could have a few free "gift subscriptions" that are good for 10 days, like they use on gaming sites. I'm sure once someone has the whole website for 10 days, most will subscribe. Maybe one gift a month per subscriber - give it to someone you've met in an open forum. OR when a new person subscribes, they get 10 free days to get hooked, then yank it away, haha.
Co-ops, this is a frustrating area. I wish the threads that go together could be hooked together, the offer, the chat, etc. Maybe 3 linked threads each.
When I have a subject title typo I just dmail admin at "contact us". I suspect that there'd be confusion if we could edit it though and change the whole name though. Doubt it would happen often but just a thought...
I'd like a discount/coupon forum. I just found a good online coupon for any True Value Hardware Store good until July and would love to share with everyone, but obviously can't post it in dozens of forums. It is in the frugal living forum if anyone is interested. http://davesgarden.com/community/forums/f/dirtcheap/all/
I don't like regional gardening forums being closed to non subscribers. You are shutting out a lot of people that way. Central Midwest started out as an open forum. Some of us didn't know it closed until after it had happened. That is why we first started listing the RUs for the Central Midwest on that forum instead of the RU forums and now CMW is a closed forum too. So there goes the advantage to nonsubscribers.
Leaflady has a good point there. If Regional Gardening Forums were open to the public it might generate a lot more interest and subscriptions? Maybe if non subscribers were invited to join in the regional round ups it would give them a chance to meet and chat with subscribers and learn more about DG.
Prizes for members. Everyone who is a member gets one chance per month automatically! Winner gets a gift card or something cool related to gardening, or gets their DG renewed free for 6 months, or a DG item of their choice.
Personally I loved the pink from the instant I noticed it. But then if anyone has seen my house you would know why. I love bright colors. And that cottage is one of the most beautiful I think I have ever seen. I will use that image as a relaxation place.
If more non-subscribers are added to threads that are now for subscribers only I would not like it, also don't care to get D-mail from non-suscribers. Let them pay if they want to be subscribers. Nothing is free for all.
I agree about the non-subscribers. I don't like it when someone post something for a non to help them get an answer. When in the first place they should have to pay if we do. Don't get me wrong I don't mind paying just think everything should be fair.
I watch the beginner houseplant and the plant identification forums and have posted many times on the "locked" forums trying to get info for a non subscriber who may be asking for help with a specific plant. If I'm not familiar with the plant they are asking about, I will go to the plant specific forum and ask if someone familiar with that plant if they can help the non subscriber and post the link to the original question.
I am all for helping anyone get an answer to their questions. That's how we all learn, by helping each other. And, I usually make a comment to the non subscriber that they cannot access a particular forum if they are not a paid subscriber, maybe at some point they will want to purchase a subscription and learn more.
I have been d-mailed from non subscribers a few times in the past year and a half since I joined DG but they have always been very cordial, asking for suggestions regarding a plant or thanking me for being helpful. I would not like it if I was bombarded with d-mail ... but if I were to get d-mails asking for trades or free plants (as some have) I would just ignore and not answer the d-mail or politely tell them I had nothing to trade or give away. I know we all pay for our annual subscriptions and some think it's not fair for non subscribers to get anything for free ... but I will still help a newbie or non subscriber if and when I can. If we show a friendly welcome to people they may end up visiting the garden more often, realizing there's a lot to this site and purchasing a subscription.
Thanks plantladylin! I waited a couple months before subscribing initially just to scope out the site. Loved and still do love Daves but now I'm just a member. I've no problem having limited access to forums, especially regional where many subscribers give out personal contact info etc for gettogethers.
The "spam" I get on daves from subscribers and members alike is nothing like regular email which is compounded more.
I'm with the folks who want more detailed propagation info on PlantFiles (requires dark, etc.), and I would like to have a button always available to take me directly to the Search PlantFiles feature. Thanks for asking!!!
i'm not that crazy myself about getting plant trade requests from non-subscribers. who are they? at least if it's a subscriber there is usually some kind of history so that i can know who i am dealing with and i much prefer that. it always surprises me on daves to get those requests. on gardenweb i expect it but on daves it just feels creepy.
i try never to ignore any dmail though as i have heard so many newbies say that they are intimidated when we do that. just my thought on that.
I'm all about helping people but I feel DG has set up areas for non-members and other places for members to go. I don't feel it should be up to us to make these gray areas and provide help that would require a membership to get.
it is strange though plantnative as usually every place on daves is "family". sometimes they don't all get along but everybody knows everybody else. and when a "stranger" comes on, esp. private dmail, for some reason it takes me back every time because this is Daves place and i am expecting only family. didn't mean to offend you if i did.
I have to admit to not having read all of the responses--just so many.
1) I voted to improve the navigation. Since I'm on satellite, loading lengthier threads is slow. I can't advise the solution, but hope some of the techies who also voted for improved navigation have some ideas.
2) Opening more forums as free? While I don't have an objection if that is the only way DG can grow, I question why subscribers would feel compelled to continue paying a fee. IMO the subscribers look at DG as their community. People feel safe and connected here. The "other" garden web site that I'm thinking of is free and doesn't have the same feel.
Cheapskate that I am, I would love for retailers (maybe web-only?) to offer specials to DG members- esp. those of us who give them positive reviews. I don't expect big retailers (Walmart) to acknowledge a "DG Member Card", but maybe Logee's and our other top-rated retailers could give us a bit of a "thank you" present once in a while!
I agree with almost all posts (except for not allowing members to dmail subscriberes, what is that?!?) BUT I would LOVE it if the journal were improved. I'd like to be able to put one thing in more than one catagory, less clicking iover and over again (back, back) and just make it more user friendly. Maybe even making it closer to spreadsheet functionality would be amazing.
Thanks for listening, cant wait to see what you do with all this input!
I have several improvements I would like to suggest.
1) Allow DG Dmail to actually send us emails to our home computers if we choose that, and give all Dmail users email addresses so that we can return those DMails from home. With email, I don't understand what DMail is for, or why I should want it.
2) Improve navigation. To do a Plant Files query by genus and species one has to go to plant files, click another link to go to a selection of forms, click the form, and use it. Too many clicks. Another improvement would be to allow people to enter genus species cultivar/hybrid into the generic search box, and let only that plant come back, or the nearest thing, say all of the genus, or genus species.
3) Allow subscribers to set up the home page more freely. Right now it is pretty clunky, with stuff constrained to one column or the other. Or give us multiple layouts, one forum specific, one with the trading stuff on top and forums below, or another with daily stuff on the top forums below.
I would prefer that the d-mail continue the way it is now as I know when receiving d-mail I will have some idea who is sending it and usually why. Plus co-mingling my D-mails with all the my other regular emails with those going to the same account as my DH would not make him happy. And I certainly I don't want DG to EVER give my email to anyone without my permission. I have had some very unpleasant d-mails come from two subscribers that I would have liked to block. So I would relish the power to block future dmails from this people. I know I can just not read or respond to them and I can delete them unread, but emotionally I would rather not ever see them arriving. Patti
I haven't voted because I can't really think of a thing that I'd like to change...
DMail is just fine the way it has been for a long while now. It used to be that when someone DMailed you; they could see & capture your private email account. It was a good thing that you fixed that problem Dave. Some naughty ones could fill your email account with a lot of spam & trash!!
Then there is the fact that Dave's Garden will send you out an email to your private email account in 3 business days if you haven't been back to check your DMail. That's Dave's email reminder system.
multiple layouts: may be more confusing to the newbies who don't know how to use the system yet.
PlantFiles query: yes that would be nice to have back in one of the tabs ontop again; however I do know why you changed it from the way it was in the past. :^)
AnalogDog check this out: Garden plants - PlantFiles - your plant identification database: Scroll down this page & really take a look: http://davesgarden.com/guides/pf/ you'd be amazed what you can do when you 'Book Mark' the link.
I don't want d-mail coming to my home e-mail account! We get hundreds of e-mails at home every day and I don't want d-mail adding to the mix. I got a home e-mail yesterday telling me I had a d-mail from another DG'er ... like a home alert. I would rather not have that. I think the alert at the top of our home page is enough, I read d-mail as soon as I log on to the site before going to any threads I'm watching. I may not answer right then but I do make a point to acknowledge d-mail as soon as I can.
I love the Blog, I use it extensively and there are certain items I would like to keep at the top..like a sticky. I would love to be able to create stickys in my blogs so I won't have to change dates to keep certain items at the top.
What would be cooler than a National Convention? Have it in Denver or Kansas City, where it would be central to all except out of country members. Get sponsorship from advertisers that are on here and do a cross promotion of some kind with a travel site. Could be the biggest plant swap or sale of the century!! And think of meeting all the people you gossip and laugh and cheer on here on DG! A 2 or 3 day event? I would rather get the opprotunity to meet yall than a tshirt or less clicking to view anything.
I understand the need to charge people for the use of the site, but a few of the forums have rapidly lost 90% of the most interesting and knowlegable participants once they required membership fees. I guess some of those people that left weren't the sort to make financial commitments to just one site and probably perused dozens of botanical-related sites regularly. I personally visit lots of other botanical sites and enjoy the huge, diverse sharing of scientific, practical and anecdotal information these other sites offer... but this is the only one that excludes those people like me that 'stray' all the time (I just think this happens to be the very best site so I spend most of my time here and don't think the meager fee is too much...)... but it would be nice to see Davesgarden survive and thrive via some other means than excluding the public from the forums and attract some of those participants back again. Sigh.
I voted for improving the navigation. Already had one problem area that I wrote in to admin about (and never got a response) relating to the "Favorites" which insist on showing nothing whatever on my page but demand that I go to DG Home Page to see what if anything is happening. Found another one today when a response to an earlier email discussion was hidden away in a subsidiary Dmail file instead of being in the inbox. Extra steps (going to DG Home Page instead of being able to access the info on my page) and having to go scrounging through subsidiary Dmail files to find out *which* email had a response is a pain for me. I'm referring here to PHYSICAL PAIN because my wrists were long since destroyed by carpal tunnel injuries at work and every mousey infliction of unnecessary garbage steps is yet another PHYSICAL PAIN against my survival. It would be helpful if DG programmers could be sensitized to the reality that, since the mouse got inflicted on society, carpal tunnel injuries have increased from 10% of the population to 15% last I saw, and every extra mouse click is a PHYSICAL PAIN for those of us thus injured.
I voted for having a national dg RU, but I would like to say, that I found the ability to use Microsoft word for something or another one time on DG and couldn't find it again. I couldn't get it to post right either so I think it would be nice if we had access to posting in different sizes and access to the drawing tool bar like when we are helping someone lay out a garden or we are asking for help etc.
I think there are many used for Word here. I am sure you want it kept simple but I still think some of the tools would be nice to have even if it is within limits.
Barstow, hey neighbor. My husband works out at Borax and a lot of his coworkers live there, we are kind of neighbors.
I have carpel Tun/cubital tunnel too and it is hard to click a lot. I found that a lot of the new places they located or renamed things on DG are not as user friendly as the old ones they had before. ie, it took me forever to find my journal and it used to be called diary and journal, but now it is blog so I looked and looked for it and it was set up a bit different too.
This is one example, I have to write down the other ones that escape me at the moment.
I'd like to see more detail on plant files. It's frustrating to wander through the forums for specific info. I'm growing veggies for the first time, and I have questions like: plant spacing, should I pinch the top? How cold night temp can they withstand? Will they self-polinate or do I need > 1 plant? Special fert. needs? Are there some things that shouldn't be planted beside it? Does it need a trellis? Does it grow well in hot weather (like, I hear tomatoes start dropping blooms if > 95 deg, so should be shaded?) should seeds be soaked/nicked/stratified? plant in the fall(garlic?), Do hot peppers really get 'hotter' if grown in the hottest part of the season? Do I need to plant every few weeks (will it bolt and become unusable? (cilantro), etc
Sure thing, hellnzn11 of Rosamond. In fact, I go past the Borax plant and through your town en route to Lancaster to shop for things I can't get here locally. My young apricot tree came from there. At first the thought of a 90 mile drive each way for shopping was a downer but the beauty of the desert is why I bought my little house here in the first place. Along with getting the supplies I need, I also get a lovely three hour drive to/from with only the last ten miles getting into the LA smog that you are blissfully just outside of.
I would like to be able to find things using the tabs at the top. I never can find what I need. Right now I have to find how to change my settings on my homepage. I have to redo it . My computer "nerd" helped straighten some things the other day, but I lost the way my homepage was set. I have not found where I can redo it and make it the way it was..
Those tabs at the top are not descriptive enough or (2) like tabs should be under like subjects so you can find things. Being able to navigate DG easily has not been achieved in my estimation. I click, go back, click, go back, etc. Many times I can't find something. I don't know where to ask so I just sign off and forget about it.
greenthumb, don't give up...ever. just go to the daves garden forum and start a new topic. lots of people will be right over to show you how. do you know how to find all the different forums that dg has?
I would like the tradelist area to be more organized and user-friendly- for example:
1) the ability to list only active/available trades, especially by year listed.
2) the ability to distinguish between "available for trade" and "wanted"
I agree with notmartha- the co-op forum is really in need of spring cleaning... it's so difficult to track open co-ops and distinguish between threads related to each co-op. perhaps an automatically generated co-op number that gets referenced the way post #'s do?
I voted for letting non-subscribers at least be able to view, but not necessarily post to subscriber threads. I have some friends and relatives that are not all that into gardening but might want to see something that I've posted. For instance, on the Greenhouse Forum I started a thread detailing a photo diary of sorts that showed every step I took to assemble a particular greenhouse. It might have been nice if I could call say my sister in Florida, and say go to this site, and see what I've been up to. This is currently impossible to do. I can't ask someone to subscribe to just view something one time. I also have to agree with Palmbob who said that we are losing some phenomenal gardening minds who have incredible knowledge and how to, but would never think to subscribe to a gardening site either for financial or reasons of principle.
I selected "improve a selected feature..." Actually, it's an old feature that disappeared. In our list of seeds/plants that we have for trade there use to be a feature at the top of the columns where you could just click on either the common name title or the latin name title and it would automatically alphabetize the list. Is that something that can come back?
I would like to see the chat room restore the notification feature when someone enters the room. It makes for a conversation starter.Also being able to just hit to place new posts instead of having to click on submit would be nice
I would like the butterfly and moth section split up into more sections - for example the brush - foots have too many species stuffed in one file.
I would like to see frogs, snakes, birds included in Dave's Garden. The birdfiles in particular will attracts a lot of attention from all over the internet!
Also the zone hardiness map need to be opened up so it can be modified - there were lots of errors in zone hardiness because some people put in zone 5 too quickly when the plants are actually hardy to zone 4 or even 3 when looking at specific plant species or names. Also common names need to be revived so if someone type a common name that vary slightly DS comes up with a list of close names.
Lastly, if it is possible can DS extend city location and zone hardiness maps to those who lives out of the US? I have noticed seveal non US substribers and one major substriber which controls Bugsfiles is from Australia.
I would still like zones listed for everyone automatically by the admin. or it should be required when joining. It makes information about plants talked about more relevant Five of today's new subscribers don't list a zone.
Maybe their interest isn't really in the gardening part of DG but in some of the art, craft, handyman, home improvement, etc. portions so they don't know or care about their zone. They may not have a single plant and have no interest or ability to raise any. DG is so much more than plants.
I voted for other. I'd like to see co-ops open for those of us who are vendors to host as long as we were not selling our own product(s). Under the current system those of us with business experience and the knowledge on how plants should be packed for shipping are barred. We can bring a lot of experience to co-ops if we were allowed to participate as host too. Seems like a valuable resource is being wasted.
oh, yes, the co-op forum needs work. i know i have 3 open threads...discussion, order, and payment and am always searching. it would be nice to have them automatically link up so they would stay together.
In line with the use of the fonts and wingdings etc. I agree 100% with the person who said have a spell check on dg too. That is a big one and It is one of the main reasons I was wishing to have more access to Microsoft Word here.
DG is a fab site that has all i want in a garden site! Its so easy to use. I would love to meet all of you at a big event. It would be so fun. Seminars, a DG sale with logo apparel, workshops, and more!
There was lots of talk a few months ago about a big DG convention type of event. I guess the idea was tabled, for the forseeable future anyway. I'm still hoping that someday there will be such an event!
More complete information on each plant in Plant Files. I agree also with the alphabetization of lists.
I don't really like the auction idea. I prefer the ambiance generosity of DG members, and being able to give to others when I have something to share.
I think it would be helpful to have more clear information
on how to add info to lesser known plants in Plantfiles.
I have come across many plants, that ask " Unknown, please
tell us", when I have a bit or two of info that could be added.
Such as propogation, seed collecting, or soil ph. The only
thing I found I have been able to do is report that it grows
in such and such zone. Perhaps this info is already out there,
but I haven't come across it.
And, I like Tuinkabouter's idea of posting more than one pic
in a post. Maybe that would be cumbersome on the grand
scale, so not sure.
Regarding opening ALL forums to non-paying members: Unless we want Dave & Co. to end up in the poor house I don't see that happening. I may be wrong about this, but I would think all on line sites have to pay for their sites to operate, it has to be supported some way. Unless we want tons of advertising showing up everywhere on this site (which I know I don't), there will be subscriptions available to those who want more access to more in depth information, sharing and friendship. Some folks purchase just a 3 month subscription, some 12 months. Our paid subscriptions help defray the costs of running such a wonderful site. Granted, one has access to lots of good information without paying for a subscription by just signing up for the few free forums, but there is so much more to this garden when you can view and post on all the forums! Anyone not subscribing is really missing out.
(Just my humble opinion) And, I know many who will agree with me. ^_^
Maybe you give a one day pass or even a week. The more people you can get 'into' it...the better off you will be. People who now blow it off, because they just dont know what it is, will be hooked. Bingo, a new member. Your not doing it to be nice. Your doing it to troll for new members using virtually no ad dollars.
I can see where it could get out of hand if they could talk tho. They would have not signed the verbage agreement contract. I know on some magazine sites, if you want the free week, you have to still give all your sgin up info. first.
When you have a web page you have many expenses. You pay for the web space on the server where your pages are stored or you pay the company through which you access the internet (either is a monthly fee). You also pay a yearly fee for owning the domain name (in this case davesgarden.com) plus he has all the utilities/payroll expenses etc that any business incurs. It's simply not fair to ask him to open it all up to the non-paying public. How are all those bills going to get paid if he did that?
I would like to see a 'search plant database' in the main toolbar on top. sometimes the adservers make the pages load really slow and it seem to take a long time to get to the search page.
but then maybe i just haven't figured out how to get there with a single click?
WOW-I read them all and voted for the "something other". I have to say I think they are all good ideas EXCEPT the whole non-subscriber bits. I think non-subscribers should be able to dmail, but maybe we should have a filter option that allows us to block them if we so choose not to receive them. I also don't think that no subscribers should be able to roam willy nilly aorund the site. If I remember correctly, when I first signed up for an acct. (I could be wrong on this) tha I got 7 days for free??? If I am wrong I think that is a WONDERFUL IDEA. Love the idea of getting discount form some of ouir top 30-after all, how much revenue do they make from DG as a whole in a year.
Love the idea of monthly contests for subscribers...
As far as the ideas that I had...
1-make each catagory like a lot of sites so that if I hold my mouse over let's say "products & sources" that I can then selct Gardenwatchdog of PF in a drop down box and directly click to link there...
2-make it so we do have more preferences on our individual page as far as certain customizations. Maybe even let us customize some fonts and colors-things like that
3-being able to download our spreadsheets into our page for info-I kinda don't like the journal and prefer to use my spreadsheet, but would love to have it here-I am sure others would find it helpful as well.
4-in the comments section of PF have the uber & admin comments come up 1st of have comments in your zone come up ist.
5-zones in PF-have them say things like Zone3 (with protection) or (agaist foundation), things that would help us all know where to plant things.
Just my 2 cents, but all in all I think most of us have WONDERFUL ideas!!!
One feature I found very generous was the 10 free plant
searches a day for non-subscribers. It's been a while, but
there are freebie forums you can at least look(join?) into. I
also like the short-term subscription, for anyone to check out
DG at a nominal fee first.
Another item I think I would benefit from, is if the standard
templates for seed packets were to print out a bit larger,
without losing resolution. I can not write all the info that tiny,
let alone read it. They also don't seem to multi-fit a page
properly for maximum paper use. However, I think they are
cute as buttons.
And, another feature I think would be so valuable is a large
spigot for DG espresso with bisquits and gravy, at a reasonable
cost, of course.
Also, I would find it helpful to know who posted last in
a topic, up front, along with the topic starter's name.
Something like 'last post by:'. You can see this sometimes
on your home page listed as 'who', but it doesn't go with
you to the forum, and may not be specific to the topic you
are interested in.
OOO-like the larger packet idea-I think some of the info on there is superflerous too, but maybe even so we can save them on the puter and type in the info instead of the lines already there-the ones I downloaded, I can't edit-just print as they are...I usually end up printing off the onfo & just taping it to the back...
I think it would be cool if we could choose a seed packet
template, futz around with it, print our info on it before
printing out the whole thing. The computer can type much
clearer and well spaced than I, and then I could use my glasses
to read it if need be, but that would be so much better than
trying to read so many different people's handwriting.
Back to the idea of getting discounts or freebies from vendors, hopefully new subscribers could "get their money back" if certain perks were added to the membership; i. e., membership to a plant society, free copies of gardening magazines, coupons, etc.
Contests/drawings also add value to the memberships! Maybe incentive programs like "if you subscribe this week, you'll be entered into a drawing to get "X" prize".
Premiums are a terrific idea-- I have enough coffee mugs, but a cool sticker that says "I'm a Dave's Member" would be great! We could put them on our cars, tool carts, etc.! Ooooh- a "Dave's" plant pot!!! There could be a contest as to who has the best plant in that pot! I can also see a "Dave's" line of seeds. If you join, you'll get a pot and 5 packs of Dave's seed, along w/ some stickers- there could be a nice "welcome" gift pot as membership incentive. We can poll members as to what their favorite "premiums" are. A Dave's gift shop on line would be the next logical step.
Novelty always generates interest and buzz! We're all kids at heart!!!
FYI I am a marketing director, however unemployed at present :0(
I voted more forums open to members, but then I like someone's idea of a weekly forum. How about cycling through the subscriber-only forums, making a couple open to members each week or fortnight, then returning them to subscriber-only? We members would get the chance to see whether these forums are worth the subscription. Cable TV does this all the time, make a premium channel available to basic subscribers for a limited time, to lure them into buying the channel. Lots of work for Dave and his elves, I know, but it might attract more paying customers!
As a recent subscriber now just a member I think it's fine just the way it is with forums open/limited to members. I think a trail period for a new member might be nice but a person could just as easily come back with a new user ID couldn't they? Not that that would happen much.
But I can say if you aren't a subscriber you see WAAAY more ads on Dave's as a member, which helps defray costs. And also is an encouragement to resubscribe. ;) Hehe, so you don't see those annoying ads.
I would like to still be able to follow the threads I started which may be in forums closed to just members. :(
wow...there are a lot of posts on this, and I didnt take time to read them all, so forgive me if this is a repeat, but the suggestion[quote]Maybe non subscribers when they sign up could be given say a 5 or 7 day access to all forums ... I bet after that seven days was up there would be a lot more folks subscribing! [/quote] is a great one! I've tried many software programs, that allow you anywhere from 7 days to 30 days to try a program. Sometimes I end up liking it, and purchasing it, and other times it doesn't measure up, and I let the time lapse & uninstall the temporary software.
I agree that if people could sign up for a complimentary trial(with limited posting, but full browsing) it would really attract people, once they got to sample the site, but strongly wish that this place not become too public, like that other place...I left that other place because it was too public...what attracted me about Daves is that the subscription fee seemed to somehow auto-select a more dedicated and select breed of gardeners. That said, the subscriber fee still isn't expensive...about the same price as any of my garden magazine subscriptions, but it seems to be a good filter. Also, you get what you pay for, and I believe the subscriber fees have funded a much nicer site, than the "public" forums.
Secondly, I liked the plantfiles on the homepage tab,also. I don't like having to tab through to find it, either...
Thridly, I would love to be able to add more than one photo in a post. Usually I have to post with a picture, then go directly back to that same thread, and post a "ps-",so I can post another picture. On that other site I used to remember seeing people post several posted pictures stacked in the same post, and that would be nice to do here, also.
Those are the only three things I can possibly think of, and only mention them because you asked, lol..
Jax4ever said: [quote] Contests/drawings also add value to the memberships! Maybe incentive programs like "if you subscribe this week, you'll be entered into a drawing to get "X" prize". [/quote] and [quote] If you join, you'll get a pot and 5 packs of Dave's seed, along w/ some stickers- there could be a nice "welcome" gift pot as membership incentive. [/quote]
I think these are fine ideas but there are logistics surrounding the international membership and/or inclusion/exclusion of same. I, of course, would like to promote inclusion :-)
I'm with all the people who a) want Plant Files more accessible and b) want more propagation information included in the PF. Drives me nuts trying to figure out if seeds want light or dark, heat or coolness, if seeds need to be nicked or soaked or chilled. I see lots of interesting suggestions here, but expanding PF is at the top of my wish list!
I LOVE DG’s and wouldn’t change anything BUT lol I wish people would go into the plantfiles and update their choices when they add a plant to the plantfiles, I understand them making two different choices if they don’t know how tall a plant will be, how much water it takes and what kind of sun but there are too many discrepancies in the information, after this person has grown this plant a while they just need to go in and add the choices that pertain to this plant. It seems like every time I go into the plantfiles to check a plant out to find this info. I’m no where closer to finding out than I was before I looked.
I work and go everywhere in Haynes or Fruit of the Loom 100% cotton Tshirts in white.
I wish that DG just had Tshirts in that quality cotton , not the Vietnamese cotton that has stretch and is hot and cut soooo small.
Maybe just offer one for working in big sizes (I usually buy the men's XL for comfy over the pants hanging) with a DG logo on the front or back or both.
Whoever is into making Tshirts on DG can offer for only 12 or 14 dollars a cotton one. I know because the kids at the church sell them for 10.00 each with logos and make a good amount of money for their mission work. I also work in those that I buy to help the kids raise money.
Well, I didn't have time to read all this thread, so forgive me if somebody else has already said this. But would it be possible to add a feature that will automatically send us reminders about things like fertilizing and such? That's absolutely the hardest thing for me to do is remember to fertilize on time. I hate to ask for this because this is already such an awesome site and it really has made a dramatic difference in my yard and in my attitude towards gardening. I've also looked at other forum type websites and didn't like them. They just didn't seem user friendly.
It's so rare these days to find a business that is so responsive to its customers. Dave's Garden really is a jewel.:)
On the t-shirts...at least the ones I've ordered do definitely run quite a bit on the small side. I'm what I would consider sort of average size (normally I buy medium size t-shirts from anywhere else) and the size that fits me best from the t-shirts I've bought from Zazzle is XL. It fits, but it's still way tighter on me than the medium size t-shirts that I buy everywhere else. But they do warn you on the ones where the sizes run small. (and mine was definitely a women's size t-shirt).
I'll probably be the only crazy one to suggest it, but I wish some of the vendors we all use could offer DGers super duper sales. (I know that it's a ToS issue for people to advertise in the forums, but maybe in coordination somehow...?)
I meant to say I wear XL women's T shirts normally to work in that I buy at the Dollar Store from Haynes and they fit fine. They are so cool because they are really cotton and not the synthetic cotton ones that are offered on Dazzle or whatever it is called.
I would like it if in Plant Files there was an area in the plant info to list if a plant is or isn't deer resistant. I know that you can do a specific search to find this out, but it would sure be handy to have it listed right there on the page when you look up a specific plant in the PF.
I really like how Bluestone Perennials has begun to list this on each plant description they sell...so very helpful for us who have a deer population problem in our area.
Sorry, only read about half of the above because my kids started nagging for their lunch. LOL
Some things I would love to see:
--A direct way to get to the Wintersowing Database. I can never find it.
--Some way to copy or fill down on the journal. When I plant 12 things in a day, I hate having to re-type the date and the information for each plant. I gave up on using the journal and have been using a database instead. I like the idea of being able to link entries to the PF.
--I agree with more specific information on propagation or seed-starting in the Plant Files. That is what I have been specifically searching for, and it is difficult to search through multiple forums to find info on certain plants.
--This may sound silly, but some actual definitions of what "region" we are in. I am not sure if central IL is considered "Central Midwest" or "Upper Midwest." I've been lurking at both, trying to get a feel for the personalities and conversations, to see where I'd fit!
Overall, though, I LOVE Dave's Garden. I come every day now, and have learned a tremendous amount. I am so pleased that so many knowledgeable people are so patient and generous with rookie gardeners, and only hope that I am able to help others as I gain some more experience. Keep up the good work!
I also must say that I am strongly in favor of keeping most forums as subscriber only, particularly the regional threads. I am concerned about lurkers and my personal privacy. Of course, my motivation is not to get as many subscribers as possible. I selfishly like it how it is.
Tshirts and other stuff is on my 'go for it!' list.
I have a "plant files" button and "blog" on my custom box at the top of my home page. Boy, did that help when I discovered that! I think I might add a "journal" button too.
I like the idea of having more info in plantfiles, too. I love the tag idea, even though I haven't used it much. Boy, do I wish it was around when I first joined. I learned so much that year!
I voted to change a feature. I wish the pictures would come up full sized instead of having to click on the them to get them, and then go back to the thread and scroll down to the next picture and click that one. I'd also like to see more than one picture per post so people wouldn't have to make a series of posts to have all their pictures on a thread. Then if they were full sized, you could really appreciate them. I love Dave's Garden, but I also visit another forum and there the pictures are full sized, there can be more than one per post and enjoy that.
I am feeling badly as we let our thread get to 100 before we start a new thread. The dial up people on the forum where I mainly post say that 100 is the limit. I am sorry you are having so much trouble with dial up.
I voted for 'other'. I've been thinking about this all week and couldn't think of anything. But as I read though the posts, I absolutely agree about a quick link to PlantFiles on the home page. It's a nuisance to click:
Guides & Information
scroll down to get to 'Click here to search for plants'
I would like to go directly to the search screen with one click from the home page.
PlantFiles is what lead me to DG also. It amazes me how many times a day I may go to PF.
1. Please consider some way to indicate which vendors are closed when viewing the results of a search/advanced search In the Garden Watchdog. When the list returned is long, it is frustrating to have to click through to so many entries only to find them closed.
2. On the subject of opening up of more forums to non-subscribers, I would say that if it is more advantageous to DG, I don't mind. I do feel strongly, however, that subscribers or the admins should be given a window of opportunity to sanitize posts for personal information before a forum is made public.
I'm a new subscriber and haven't used alot of the features, still learning. But heres what I think:
The plant files should have more detailed info. Why is everything so space out, such as the hardiness zone? Most gardeners know their zone. Why is the soil & moisture requirements listed as other? And what does it really mean when it says average water needs; water regularly; do not over water and then on the next like, requires moist soil; do not let dry out between waterings. The information could easily be condensed. Printing it out also takes alot of room and could easily be condensed.
I also believe the plant files are one of the most important features and should have a button on the home page.
It would be nice to have a "free" week or weekend for members so that we could get a taste of what a subscription will buy. Since I can't participate in any of them, I'm not really sure what value I would get for the money.
I would love to see the Advanced Search in Plant Files updated a bit so that it's more flexible. I would love to be able to search for more than one item in a category at a time (right now if I want something that blooms either in summer or fall, you have to do two separate searches, it would be nice to have that in one). It would also be nice if you could choose to limit your results to certain genera, or eliminate certain genera from the results. Or do a second sub-search to further narrow your results. And it would be great if we could see all the search results rather than just the first 100 (hopefully with the ability to sort them by genus)
I'd also love to see some upgrades to the journal...it would be great if all the links to Plant Files worked correctly when you import a plant into your journal (many times I do this, and it creates the entry in my journal but does not create the link back to Plant Files). It would also be nice if we could create some additional fields to include in all our journal entries (it would be great if these could be customized...for example I like to track where I bought the plant from, but someone else might want to track something completely different). And I know there are other things I'd like to be able to do, but I'm drawing a blank right now! But if upgrading the journal makes it onto the "to do" list I'll be happy to try and remember them!
Just today a new subscriber was too late on a thread to get seed, so I
offered to send her several kinds of seed we were discussing. Her response was, "I hope I am not being overly thankful but no one has ever sent me anything free. This is the best 19.95 I have ever spent in my life".
Carygal, DG offers a lot of good friends and trades of seeds and plant material of all kinds.
Click on the link near the top of the page (just underneath the tabs) that says "My Info", then choose "Preferences", then if you look at the options along the side of the page you'll see one that says "password"
if there is a way to do this already please would someone tell me how but every now and then there is a whole thread that i want to save somewhere after it's closed. right now if i want to find an old thread i type in something and hope i can find it that way but i would like a way to "save" certain threads for my reference when i get ready for them. for instance, on the tx. gardening forum right now is a thread about tomato varieties for texas. i would like to file it somewhere so when i get ready to buy tomato seeds i can easily find it.
One other navigational question, if I may. My son's school has a perrenial plant sale and when I entered " Azalea hot shot " and then, "Hot shot Azalea" hundreds of Azalea's came up, not alphabetical. Didn't want to wade into that, so came up short...Am I requesting the info wrong? Why is it not alphabetical?
mamajack--I think what you're looking for is the tag feature that already exists, if you go to the thread you want to remember, click the little folder icon in the upper right corner of the screen, then type in whatever key words you want to remember it by. Then later you can go to your member page and view a list of all the pages you've tagged.
Dawn--if you go to Plant Files and use the specific search, it'll let you choose how to arrange the results, the default is by popularity but you can choose to have it alphabetize by Latin name or by cultivar name instead. I don't think you can do that with the general search however.
There are three things I'd love to see updated:
First, I would really like to have a link from an entry in my journal back to the PlantFiles entry. Sometimes it's there, sometimes it's not, and I go back and forth quite a bit.
Second, I would love to have more flexible search options in PlantFiles. In the advanced search, I would really like to have an entry field for the genus, so that I could search, say, for a yellow marigold excluding calendula. I know that's a simple example, but it's the best I could think of at the moment to get my idea across.
Third, having information on the AHS Heat Zones added to PlantFiles would be great!
Just went to add something to my favorites folder, and realized it is now a tab folder.
Is there, or can we add back in, a folder to store threads we want to keep track of, without necessarily having to watch it with a notification each time there is a new post?
Notification of new d-mail on my DG home page is plenty for me. I would not want such notification on my regular e-mail, as it is lengthy enough to wade through and delete. Perhaps this could be a choice people could make, to have this service or not, as several people mention it as something they'd like, but some of us probably don't.
My regular inbox overfloweth now. I sure don't want dmails coming in my regular email.
I do wish we could upload manually up to 6 pictures at a time. It is done that way on a lot of sites. Even Pixamo does it that way if you choose to upload 6 at a time.
Make the search engines more useful. The search forums feature, for instance, is VERY useful if you're looking for information about a certain plant, and know what type of plant it is - perennial, shrub, succulent, but not if you don't know where to look. Searching articles isn't really useful yet, but searching Plantfiles is a miracle!
I just discovered a new wish. I wish the message I'm trying to craft would not be erased when I go back to the thread to check something. I several times abandoned a post because I (my own carelessness I know) lost the post I had been typing so many times I gave up. For me, a more permanent or stable message draft would be beneficial. Thanks for asking.
Amen, Candy! Good idea. I have had that same problem so many times; now I always copy off the text of what I've started before I go back to the thread to check something. (At least I TRY to remember to do that!)
hellnzn11---I absolutely agree. It would be just so much easier to post your pretties on one post rather than a bunch. However, I have seen it done, so I think there is some kind of computer trick to it. And, I don't know many tricks. I'm an old dog (gal)
hellnzn11 and beebonnet, I think some folks use photo software (like Photoshop, etc) to make a "collage" of several pictures, save it as a single picture, and then post that. And I think the first person I saw do it was an "ole guy" in Florida. I was really impressed, and kept trying to do it as well as he did! He even added text to label all the different sprouts in his wintersowing collection. I think there are some free programs out there that will do it. Maybe someone with more experience can give you a few pointers!
I don't remember what my original answer was, ages ago, but right now my #1 priority would be making PF easier to search. At this point, too often I enter a few key words, and get hundreds of matches. I have better luck entering what I am looking for into the Google search engine and seeing what it pulls up from Plant Files. Very frustrating when you are trying to do a quick search!
A good photo editing program is Picasa from Google.
It's free (like... forever!!), not a trial, and I trust Google!
I d/led it, and I love it. So many features that I haven't gotten to all of them yet :-)
After a yr of trading, Plantfiles needs more sowing/saving detail.
Things need to be scored? Soaked? Stratified? A specific light? A specific temp? oops!!!
I'd heard of these things. Sometimes I just forgot to look it up, but sometimes it wasn't there to find, either. Often if it wasn't way down in a forum comment, it wasn't possible to post.
Seed saving can range from simple to bizzare. Instructions would've discouraged me from being so ambitious with some species that are a bit more challenging, such as composites with chaff the same size as the seed. I'd also save time not going after anything that requires bagging, because my Landlords are extremely concerned about aesthetics. Those things have to be reserved for the folks with the time, patience, and private property. :-)
More flexibility in the use of HMTL in the blog section. While I realize that might not be to everyone's liking in the forums, a little more flexibility in the blog section would allow those users who know more to be a bit more creative there. As it is now, if you want to do a real blog, you're better off with a blog on a separate site, but then you lose the nice feature of having it integrated into DG.
I think that seeing a member's latest log-in date could be misleading. I had too much going on in my life one time that I didn't log in for about 6 months! It doesn't always mean that a member doesn't care, or that they only log in when they want something.
Discontinue allowing the moving, flashing ads, and the ones that drop down over the text so that you are forced to click on the ad.
I think that those are not fair marketing tools, they slow down the computer, and they force the user to click on them.
DG is popular enough that advertisers will be happy to just have a "regular" banner without all that annoying stuff. And, I do take this into consideration when I buy online. I skip right over vendors that use unfair marketing tactics and buy from their competitors.
In the zip code feature,
severak dufferent things:
1 Indicate whether a plant frows in a certain zip, and seoarately c checkbox if the poster has actually personally grown the plant, or seen it growing
2. Have a place to be able to write in other countries and the ciry where the plant grows
3. Have checkboxes to indicate if the
plant frowing in that zip code is frowing outside and unprotected.
Sometimes, they are grown in greenhouse or taken outside in pots in summer and brought back in during winter. These differemt methods
make a big difference in fuccessfully frown a plant, depending on where one lives.
I've just seen this thread today (better late than never) so here's my 2 cents worth of ideas:
Allow people to add a few (maybe 3) extra "user defined" columns to their Plant Journals for example I'd like "Family" , for a start, someone else might want "Flower Colour" or "Source" and also to save an encapsulated form of their Journals on computer at home. The last time my broadband was down and I couldn't get onto DG for nearly 36 hours I nearly went NUTS with withdrawal symptoms! I am getting a bit paranoid at the sheer amount of information I am accumulating which I cannot easily backup locally or access if off-line.
Allow people to restrict the Advanced search by genus or family name - there is a big numerical difference between all the Bulbs with Pink flowers and all the Hyacinths with pink flowers! I would think you might be able to do this by adding a blank "write in" box to the genus list where the searches have been specialised for Roses Narcissus etc: I'd also like Dave to consider adding another layer of optional descriptors to plant files for botanical words. Leaf shape and Leaf Margin type would be a good starting point. As an example, I have been trying to ID a vine with palmately compound leaves - It's been up on the plant ID forum for quite a while now,without much success - a search where I could go "Vine + palmately compound" would probably have given me a suitable short-list to check through in a very small number of jiffies!
Find a way to bring back adding stuff to the old Favourites folder - many things are better tagged, but the core resource threads I use a lot are getting lost in the long list of tagged threads I am accumulating.
Please add some kind of Heat Zones, AND a Humidity indicator to Plant Files - even if it is only something like Preferred Humidity Level (with a choice of Low, Medium, High). I think the Zones and Postcodes features CAN be a bit difficult for newbies to work out - maybe the explanatory text needs to be a bit reworded when you go to fill them in - instead of just "Does this plant grow in your area?" maybe "Does this plant grow without special treatment in your area?" - there is a big difference between a plant that will grow happily year round in your garden and one you have to coddle by bringing it in for the winter, or providing with a special environment like a greenhouse. The same with the Hardiness Zones Settings - at the moment it says "You are setting the Hardiness. Please check all that apply:" the second sentence could be changed to "Please check all that apply for plants growing in a natural habitat." or something similar. As an example I grow a lot of "spring" and "autumn" flowering bulbs that don't really appreciate my extremely dry 10a climate - Hyacinths, Crocus, etc, but I dig them up and store them all for the summer - If I didn't they would never come back, so I don't consider them "hardy" for my zone even though I CAN grow them successfully.
- ability to return to previous category after changing status of an entry.
It's frustrating to be routed to the new status list. I'm forgetful, so to be thorough, I try to work through each of my lists: annuals, perennials, aquatics, tropicals, herbs, veggies, vines, trees, shrubbery (nie!), imaginary beings, etc., & check if anything needs updating. Currently I have to go back quite a bit before I can go forward.
- ability to move to the next major category level while in a minor category, if only for a list of links to the other minor categories, or it could bounce the user back to the "my journal" page until the bugs are out
- ability to post a photo that correlates with each milestone, action, or status update. Merge the blog & journal features. They're too similar.
I vote NO to merging Journal and Blog - Blog, to me, is a narrative for things like "today I dug up bulbs" whereas Journal is better structured for following the fortunes of individual plants over time. Blog is also good for overview type entries which cross many categories - it is much easier to say "fertilised side garden" than to individually add such an entry to every plant's record that lives in that side border!
I also dislike being rerouted - adding a "return to the previous Category" option would be neat.
And I second [quote] - ability to post a photo that correlates with each milestone, action, or status update. [/quote] I find myself putting in a milestone to get the date span record and then putting in an entry as well to carry the photo or other data. Actually, I am not that fond of the way the Milestones work at present, especially the fact that they don't appear in your text when you use the "Click here to prepare the items on this page for printing." link. I'd also probably commit some sort of nasty crime is it would ensure that you could see the first date in the record view - I am forever toggling back and forth to see when I actually acquired a plant.
While I am at it I wish the Location column worked like Category and Status IE with a radio button at the bottom of the list and a list of locations to pick from. I currently have about 300 kinds of bulbs which change their locations regularly (most of them twice a year and some of them more often). Changing each one by hand is a pain! Being able to do them in batches would make life (and journal updating) MUCH easier!
Finally, LOL at [quote] shrubbery (nie!), imaginary beings, etc. [/quote] I shall get my coconut shell horse to salute you!
I paid with my "fill as you go" Mastercard.
I was surprised I was able to do that, as some company's websites don't "read" the different sets of #s. I couldn't rent a car with it, either.
Do they have the re-fillable credit cards in Costa Rica?