Plant Database forum: Announcing the Mass Databox Proposal tool

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Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
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dave
Aug 13, 2014 3:50 PM CST

Garden.org Admin

Here is a very powerful tool for everyone to start enjoying. It's a tool where you can submit a data proposal that will affect every plant that matches a latin name you give it.

Enter a latin name and then check off all the data options that apply to every plant that matches the name, and off you go. An admin will check your work and once approved, every plant matching the latin name will have those data fields added to the other fields that they may already have.

You can access the tool below:

http://garden.org/plants/propose/mass_databox/

I also added a link to it in the infobox for this forum (top-right of the thread list for this forum.)

Plant Admins: you'll notice a link in your "Plants Admin" box on the homepage for "0 mass DB". That's the number of currently waiting proposals. Anytime we get a proposal it'll show up on the homepage in that area. Admins can edit a proposal before approving it!

If anyone has questions, let me know. Smiling
Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Beekeeper Garden Sages Avid Green Pages Reviewer Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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dave
Aug 14, 2014 11:25 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

I added an enhancement this morning. You can now copy the data details from one plant to a group of other plants.

For example, if you're looking at Goji Berry (Lycium barbarum) and you want to copy the data to all its cultivars, just scroll to the bottom and click on "Copy databox details from this plant to others". You then enter the latin name you want to copy them all to, optionally change the proposal a little bit, then submit it. Once approved the proposal works just like any other mass databox proposal.
Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
I helped beta test the first seed swap Plant and/or Seed Trader Seed Starter Region: Pacific Northwest Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Vegetable Grower
Avid Green Pages Reviewer Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Charter ATP Member
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RickCorey
Aug 14, 2014 11:29 AM CST
dave said:... those data fields added to the other fields that they may already have.

You can access the tool below:

http://garden.org/plants/propose/mass_databox/


That's great, adding to existing fields!

Will text fields like "Plant Height" and "other info" be appended to existing text, or will they replace existing text?
Name: D Brawner
Daufuskie Island SC (Zone 8b)
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dbrawner
Aug 14, 2014 11:53 AM CST
This feature is great.
Name: Debra
Garland, TX (NE Dallas suburb) (Zone 8a)
Service dogs: Angels with paws.
Dragonflies Dog Lover I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Photography Bee Lover Plays in the sandbox
Butterflies Region: Texas I sent a postcard to Randy! Charter ATP Member Annuals Garden Sages
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lovemyhouse
Aug 14, 2014 12:05 PM CST
Thumbs up Thumbs up Thumbs up
If you don't ask, the answer is always 'no.'
Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Beekeeper Garden Sages Avid Green Pages Reviewer Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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dave
Aug 14, 2014 12:05 PM CST

Garden.org Admin

They will replace existing text.
Name: Ann ~Heat zn 9, Sunset
North Fl. (Zone 8b)
Garden Sages Native Plants and Wildflowers Xeriscape Organic Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level
Butterflies Charter ATP Member Plant Identifier Region: Florida Dog Lover Birds
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flaflwrgrl
Aug 14, 2014 12:08 PM CST
I have questions.

Let's say for instance, I do that for Lagerstroemia. I pulled up the mass tool & entered Lagerstroemia, now it gives me the option to check off everything for that, including plant height, spread, bloom time, bloom color. Not ALL Lagerstroemia have the same height, spread, bloom time or bloom color. So if someone uses this tool & fills in the height, spread, bloom time, then we could have incorrect information for a LOT of Lagerstroemia. Am I missing something here? It seems to me like we could get some very careless entries promoting incorrect information.
I am a strong believer in the simple fact is that what matters in this life is how we treat others. I think that's what living is all about. Not what I've done in my life but how I've treated others.
~~ Sharon Brown ~~



Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Beekeeper Garden Sages Avid Green Pages Reviewer Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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dave
Aug 14, 2014 12:09 PM CST

Garden.org Admin

You're right, Ann, and that's why this goes through moderation. Only the plant admins have the power to approve these proposals and they will not approve ones that contain incorrect information.
Name: Ann ~Heat zn 9, Sunset
North Fl. (Zone 8b)
Garden Sages Native Plants and Wildflowers Xeriscape Organic Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level
Butterflies Charter ATP Member Plant Identifier Region: Florida Dog Lover Birds
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flaflwrgrl
Aug 14, 2014 12:13 PM CST
Okay, I understand that & that's a good system of checks & balances. So my next question is (& I don't know the answer to it so I'm not being contentious here) are there *that* many plants that all have the very same characteristics?

I am a strong believer in the simple fact is that what matters in this life is how we treat others. I think that's what living is all about. Not what I've done in my life but how I've treated others.
~~ Sharon Brown ~~



Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Beekeeper Garden Sages Avid Green Pages Reviewer Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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dave
Aug 14, 2014 12:21 PM CST

Garden.org Admin

I think so. I used the tool this morning (or maybe it was yesterday) for goji berries. There are only 3 cultivars and one species entry in the database. That's not enough to warrant a parent plant but I did want to submit data proposals for all 4 of the plants. The tool worked perfectly for that.
Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
Forum moderator Plant Database Moderator Charter ATP Member Region: California Cat Lover Roses
Clematis Irises Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier Garden Sages
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zuzu
Aug 14, 2014 12:29 PM CST

Plants Admin

In some cases, it isn't replacing information. It's just adding it on. I just edited and approved a mass proposal for Armeria, for instance. I removed some of the information, including the bloom colors, which had been listed as pink and white, because not every Armeria has pink and white blooms. In fact, I don't know of any that have both colors. The zone information looked valid, so I left it in the proposal, but it has been added to some conflicting zone information. Here's an example:

Pinkball Thrift (Armeria pseudarmeria 'Ballerina Red')
Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
Forum moderator Plant Database Moderator Charter ATP Member Region: California Cat Lover Roses
Clematis Irises Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier Garden Sages
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zuzu
Aug 14, 2014 12:34 PM CST

Plants Admin

I should add that some of the information in the linked entry was already there. The mass proposal did not include the height information, for instance. That was in the entry before the mass proposal tool began its work.
Name: Evan
Pioneer Valley south, MA, USA (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member Plant Database Moderator Forum moderator Aroids Irises Celebrating Gardening: 2015
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Tropicals Foliage Fan Bulbs Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge)
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eclayne
Aug 14, 2014 12:35 PM CST

Plants Admin

I agree that this is a very powerful tool. Even 4 datapoints that affect a single species and it's cultivars can affect a lot of plants.

Proposals for an entire genus might only include 1 or 2 datapoints that are true for all plants involved.
Evan
Name: Evan
Pioneer Valley south, MA, USA (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member Plant Database Moderator Forum moderator Aroids Irises Celebrating Gardening: 2015
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Tropicals Foliage Fan Bulbs Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge)
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eclayne
Aug 14, 2014 12:43 PM CST

Plants Admin

In Zuzu's example I think this sort of notation is confusing
Flowering: Other: Many will repeat bloom if spent blooms are removed.

I understand what is meant in the context of all Armeria, but what it says is this applies to 'Ballerina Red'.
Evan
Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
Forum moderator Plant Database Moderator Charter ATP Member Region: California Cat Lover Roses
Clematis Irises Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier Garden Sages
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zuzu
Aug 14, 2014 12:45 PM CST

Plants Admin

That's true. I didn't think this one through, Evan. *Blush*

I'll remove the newly proposed zone information and the "Flowering: other" information from the Armerias after everyone has had a chance to see the example in the link.
[Last edited by zuzu - Aug 14, 2014 12:49 PM (+)]
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Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Charter ATP Member Region: Texas Master Gardener: Texas Permaculture Raises cows I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
Garden Ideas: Master Level Beekeeper Garden Sages Avid Green Pages Reviewer Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier
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dave
Aug 14, 2014 1:00 PM CST

Garden.org Admin

On select pulldowns, if a plant already has an option selected for the pulldown (like minimum cold hardiness) and you subsequently submit a mass proposal that adds a different pulldown option, it will indeed add rather than replace the pulldown. That's a weakness of my proposal script that I'll need to address sooner rather than later. Until I deal with that, just be aware that it happens.
Name: Ann ~Heat zn 9, Sunset
North Fl. (Zone 8b)
Garden Sages Native Plants and Wildflowers Xeriscape Organic Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level
Butterflies Charter ATP Member Plant Identifier Region: Florida Dog Lover Birds
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flaflwrgrl
Aug 14, 2014 1:00 PM CST
eclayne said:I agree that this is a very powerful tool. Even 4 datapoints that affect a single species and it's cultivars can affect a lot of plants.

Proposals for an entire genus might only include 1 or 2 datapoints that are true for all plants involved.


I agree with this & understand the value of it.

I also wonder how much work this is going to be for the Plants Administrators. Zuzu (for example) obviously had to go through & check all that information & so will each Plants admin. I guess what I'm trying to say is; if the Plants Administrators have to go through & check that all the info. is correct, then why are *we* proposing data? Why aren't the Plants Administrators just going through & putting the data in? And please don't take this as being snarky on my part. I'm just thinking this is a heck of a workload for them *as if they were doing the work in the first place*.
I am a strong believer in the simple fact is that what matters in this life is how we treat others. I think that's what living is all about. Not what I've done in my life but how I've treated others.
~~ Sharon Brown ~~



Name: Evan
Pioneer Valley south, MA, USA (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member Plant Database Moderator Forum moderator Aroids Irises Celebrating Gardening: 2015
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Tropicals Foliage Fan Bulbs Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge)
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eclayne
Aug 14, 2014 1:19 PM CST

Plants Admin

dave said:Until I deal with that, just be aware that it happens.

Yep, I messed that up twice I think. Thanks Zuz.

Evan
Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
Forum moderator Plant Database Moderator Charter ATP Member Region: California Cat Lover Roses
Clematis Irises Garden Ideas: Level 2 Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier Garden Sages
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zuzu
Aug 14, 2014 1:27 PM CST

Plants Admin

Thank you for your concern, Ann. Smiling It actually is much easier to check proposed information than to gather new information. Some of the editing is merely a matter of common sense. In the case of the Armerias, I removed the information that it could be grown in a 1-gallon container, for instance. Most armerias will quickly grow beyond that container size. I know that anything can be grown in a 1-gallon container at some stage in its development, even an oak tree, Big Grin but we don't want to advise people to grow plants in small containers unless the plants stay small forever.

As for the suggestion that the plants admins should just go through and put the data in themselves, it might have taken me 10 years to get around to the armerias, Smiling so I like these mass proposals.
Name: Ann ~Heat zn 9, Sunset
North Fl. (Zone 8b)
Garden Sages Native Plants and Wildflowers Xeriscape Organic Gardener I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level
Butterflies Charter ATP Member Plant Identifier Region: Florida Dog Lover Birds
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flaflwrgrl
Aug 14, 2014 1:32 PM CST
I wasn't *really* suggesting you guys put the data in yourselves. I was trying to ask if this would really save you guys some work & trying to keep *all* of us from duplicating work.

Your explanation as to it be easier to check info. than to gather new info. answers my question. Thumbs up
I am a strong believer in the simple fact is that what matters in this life is how we treat others. I think that's what living is all about. Not what I've done in my life but how I've treated others.
~~ Sharon Brown ~~



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