There is a grower down the street and I said I'd sell their stuff, but nothing is marked. No one there knows exactly what they have there. Mexicans will plant seeds and something different -from the what the marked purchased seed packet says- sprouts and grows up instead. This happens a lot more than you can imagine. Plus the Mexicans who don't read or speak English move tags. So--nothing has a label. The owner said, "What's the use? We'll just label it succulent or cactus."The owner said, "It is only important that we know how to grow this stuff." I asked the owner if I could bring in an expert to identify and label the stuff, but the owner said, "No, because he is afraid that afterwards their stuff will be stolen." He wants no one to even see what is inside his greenhouse. Because when you grow so much stuff in volume- wierd things appear.---they have crested weird one of a kind things, huge old stuff, variegated wierd stuff, wierd flower colors, new crosses-hybrids, etc. So, I take a picture of a product that is for sale and scour the internet trying to see if I can find what the darn plant is. This has been a nightmare where I get so frustrated that sometimes I want to cry and I am a computer idiot to begin with. I have been doing this since September. Only yesterday, I found by accident Google Images. That I could go there and type in a plant and 100's of pictures of one plant would show up. WOW!! That is how dumb I am that I found that after 5 months and I've been living on the computer the whole time. While I am online, I constantly find you and your articles which help me so much you can not believe it. You have no clue how indebted I am to you. Big ah hah moments when I read your article. Your articles and photos speak to me, and give me the information I've asked the universe for. I think wow, you researched what I was asking for. And, if I could know everything you know. Oh, wow! Besides you, my favorite sites are cactiguide.com and desert-tropicals.com. But there are problems there with those sites - like I have a seedling aloe (impossible to know what it will grow up to look like) or I have one variety of cactus which can look like several others and one variety can have so many looks--- like out of 500 cacti planted at the same time from the same seed batch, each is unique and looks different- long hair, short hair, blue eyes, brown eyes, dark, light, skinny, fat, short, tall. Even books from the library are outdated and in black and white and in the l990's they renamed all cactus. One cactus can have up to 30 other names. Out of every thing on line, on the internet, you are a real person-- almost, Not just a website, and always, I feel like you are are a fairy God-father angel helping me, but still not a real person because this is the internet --and and I want to meet you and talk to you in person, but I can't find you. I've even looked up Veterinarians named Geoff Stein on line and couldn 't find anyone. I joined a local cactus/succulent club in November and early on found that I already know more than the members there that have been members for years, and already I could be a guest speaker with just three months of research. I even joined Dave's garden so that I could email you which I was afraid to join because I first went to Dave's succulents and I didn't know how to get off that page. I frantically called everyone to come to my house and help me get that off my computer because it wouldn't go off by itself when I kept clicking my red x in my computer top corner. I was afraid I'd be so humilated and embarrassed and get busted with that on. Every day since I first read an article of yours, I've wanted to call you up and ask you something. Like- did I identify this correctly? Am I right? How am I doing? Am I close? I know that before I die I am going to be so smart because everyday I am getting smarter. But, Can you look and offer me any advice---csucculent.com- before I launch (I might have 90% right?) and before I keep getting orders sent back to me and every one wants credit card refunds because I sent them the wrong stuff and do you know of anyone who would have the patience to deal with me to help me? I'm near the end and I may have just l00 or so plants left to identify. I'm great with the succulents, but cacti are super hard for me.
sounds like the owner is a tad paranoid. There are plenty of honest 'experts' in your are that would not be inclined to rob the place... I see no other way, really. Gotta know what something is to sell it. You can take photos of each plant on a digital camera and post them in the Plant identification forum. People love to identify stuff. You could probably get the entire collection IDd in just a few days that way.