Plant Database forum: Suitable locations: mini garden

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Name: Tiffany
Opp, AL (Zone 8b)
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purpleinopp
Sep 8, 2014 10:27 AM CST
Would it be possible to add this checkbox to the data report, please? This is the one thing I can't do at ATP that I can on another site. I'd prefer to use a single source, ATP of course, for all of my garden list 'stuff' if possible.

TY for reading & any consideration possible for this suggestion.
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Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
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plantladylin
Sep 8, 2014 11:59 AM CST
I'm just curious ... what do you mean by a mini garden?
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Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
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zuzu
Sep 8, 2014 12:05 PM CST

Plants Admin

Can you use the Alpine/rock gardens characteristic to search for small plants? All of those should be small.
Name: Tiffany
Opp, AL (Zone 8b)
Houseplants Organic Gardener Composter Region: Gulf Coast Miniature Gardening Native Plants and Wildflowers
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purpleinopp
Sep 8, 2014 12:42 PM CST
TY for the replies.

Mini gardens are hugely popular, and ATP has a mini gardening forum.
Mini garden:
https://www.google.com/search?q=mini+garden&biw=1088&bih=484...
They are tiny things in containers, easily ruined by a ground cover, and are not entire sections of outdoor landscape like a rock garden. They may or may not contain rocks. Within the genrรฉ are fairy gardens, though I dislike fairies.

Alpine plants tend to croak in 100+-deg. temps, and are generally not crazy about 99% humidity.

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โ˜•๐Ÿ‘“ The only way to succeed is to try.
Name: Lin
Florida (Zone 9b)
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plantladylin
Sep 8, 2014 2:55 PM CST
Oh, duh *Blush* I have seen photos of containers like those pictured ... cute miniature gardens. I guess dwarf and miniature plants are warranted for such a garden. I typed dwarf into the database search box and got 25 plants, then typed the word miniature and got 25 pages also.
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Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
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zuzu
Sep 8, 2014 3:29 PM CST

Plants Admin

purpleinopp said:
They are tiny things in containers, easily ruined by a ground cover, and are not entire sections of outdoor landscape like a rock garden. They may or may not contain rocks. Within the genrรฉ are fairy gardens, though I dislike fairies.

Alpine plants tend to croak in 100+-deg. temps, and are generally not crazy about 99% humidity.



I can appreciate this difference, but the problem is that the people submitting data proposals for alpine plants in the future will automatically declare them also suitable for mini-gardens, regardless of their ability or inability to withstand 100+-degree heat and 99% humidity.

This probably can be handled best by listing the suitable plants in the appropriate forum threads.
Name: Tiffany
Opp, AL (Zone 8b)
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purpleinopp
Sep 8, 2014 3:39 PM CST
TY. I appreciate that, and repeated your searches to see the results. Found pages of garden plants, like Iris, daylilies, roses, and after scrolling through 3 pages between the 2 searches, found 4 plants. Not a viable way to peruse the database for plants for potted mini gardens. I don't think many people would want to scroll through 25 pages (that's 2500 plants?) to find the few appropriate ones.

Mini gardening is about using fairly ubiquitous species that are naturally miniscule and usually kept in pots, not elusive cultivars, chimeras or sports of inappropriate landscape entities. There is no 'regular, bigger version, plain species' of Crassula tetragona, for example. It is not a mini or dwarf version of anything, just a tiny plant.
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Name: Tiffany
Opp, AL (Zone 8b)
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purpleinopp
Sep 8, 2014 3:51 PM CST
TY, Zuzu, typing at the same time.

Google search for mini garden: 153,000,000 results
Google search for rock garden: 7,200,000 results
People are exponentially more interested in mini gardens than rock gardens.

I don't understand the assumption that those doing rock gardening would automatically click a checkbox for mini gardens. They are not really related in any way except that people sometimes put rocks in a mini garden.

But totally agree, the onus of determining the climate suitability for any plant is on the gardener, regardless of the type of gardening they are doing. Rocks gardens and mini gardens (just like 'flower gardens') are placed in many different climates, and alpines would be inappropriate in many of them. Alpine is a key word that indicates plants that come from cool, dry climates.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alpine_plant
When I see that word, I move on.
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Name: Rick Corey
Everett WA 98204 (Zone 8a)
Sunset Zone 5. Koppen Csb. Eco 2f
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RickCorey
Sep 8, 2014 3:52 PM CST
I see 43,500 plants checking only "Containers: Suitable in 1 gallon".

Would it help to have a checkbox for "suitable in 1/2 gallon", or "one quart"?

I'm not voting either way on the original request for
"Suitable Locations: mini garden", just wondering if size-of-container is another way to get the same result.

BTW, here is the ATP forum:
Miniature Gardening forum
http://garden.org/forums/view/miniature/

Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
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zuzu
Sep 8, 2014 4:13 PM CST

Plants Admin

Odd. When I Google mini garden, I only get 15,700,000 results, and many are restaurants. Google must think I'm more interested in eating than in gardening. Big Grin

I agree that "rock garden" plants wouldn't necessarily be checkmarked suitable for mini gardens, but I was talking about alpine plants, which are small and are usually grown in containers, so unless the category included a lengthy description, we'd constantly be running into problems keeping the category useful for your purposes.

We already have some easily misunderstood categories in the database. Alpine/rock gardening is one of them. We constantly have to weed out plants that were checkmarked suitable but aren't suitable at all. People include all sorts of huge plants, including trees, and otherwise inappropriate plants, just because they will grow above a certain altitude or because they will grow in soil with lots of rocks in it.
Name: Tiffany
Opp, AL (Zone 8b)
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purpleinopp
Sep 9, 2014 7:05 AM CST
TY for the additional replies.

Thumb of 2014-09-09/purpleinopp/672493


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Name: Lynn
Dallas, OR (Zone 8b)
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valleylynn
Sep 9, 2014 12:34 PM CST
Miniature gardens have really been on the up rise. I notice that even our local nurseries are showcasing more of the miniature plants that are easy to use for this type of gardening.
I wonder if having 'Miniature garden' listed under 'Suitable locations' would also be tagged by google when some one is doing a search for miniature garden plants. It could become the place to go for a database that featured these types of plants.
For me Alpines/Rock garden does not bring to mind plants for miniature gardening. Yes there are some that would fit this category, but then there are thousands of miniature plants that would not fit the Alpines/Rock garden category.


Name: Tiffany
Opp, AL (Zone 8b)
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purpleinopp
Sep 10, 2014 8:12 AM CST
Lynn, TY. That was my hope from asking about this. The one 'real' garden center I've found since moving to AL (90 mins away) has a huge section for mini gardens. Worth visiting just to see the completed ones they have on display/for sale. Also finding tiny plants often at BBS stores the past few years, which makes such an endeavor possible for those who don't buy plants via mail/internet, or happen to live within driving distance of a mom'n'pop with some tiny plants.

As the only garden forum facility (that's free and worth visiting regularly) with a forum just for mini gardening, being able to also instantly find a selection of potential plants in the DB would indeed make ATP the unquestioned authority and go-to forum *and DB* site for such.

Whenever I put pics of my mini gardens on various plant/garden groups on FB, people want info about trying one of their own, and the plants one could use. There's obviously subjective opinions about that, not everyone could accept the same plants for various reasons, but I can paste a link to a completed search for only plants indicated to be suitable for mini gardens from the other site.

Thanks again, everyone!

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Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
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dave
Sep 10, 2014 8:59 PM CST

Garden.org Admin

zuzu said:We already have some easily misunderstood categories in the database. Alpine/rock gardening is one of them.


I've been thinking about this all day and I feel like we should address this somehow. There clearly is a lot of interest on the net about the topic and we should serve these people. And if we can bring some clarity to our database in the meantime, all the better.

What if we simply rename "Alpine/Rock Gardening" to "Suitable for Mini Gardens"?
Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
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zuzu
Sep 10, 2014 10:49 PM CST

Plants Admin

I don't think that would work. As Tiffany pointed out, most alpine plants are unsuitable for her purposes. I think "suitable for miniature gardens" is a good category for addition, but I think it should say "miniature" rather than "mini" because mini garden could be misunderstood as small-space gardening.

Actually, though, while we're on the subject, I'd like to change "Alpine/Rock Gardening" to "Alpine Gardening" because just about any drought-tolerant plant can be grown in a rock garden, whereas alpine plants have to meet a set of highly specific criteria. @growitall and I have done quite a bit of work to keep anything not meeting those criteria out of that category.
Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
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zuzu
Sep 10, 2014 11:23 PM CST

Plants Admin

I thought I should add a post explaining those criteria. Alpine plants are small and hardy mat-forming plants with a deep taproot. They can only thrive in a harsh environment and in soil poor in nutrients.

Miniature garden plants don't have to be hardy, don't have to be mat-forming, and don't have to be grown in soil poor in nutrients.
Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
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dave
Sep 10, 2014 11:23 PM CST

Garden.org Admin

Okay, very good. I have renamed "Alpine/Rock Gardening" to "Alpine Gardening" and I added "Suitable for miniature gardens" under Uses. Thumbs up
Name: Zuzu
Northern California (Zone 9a)
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zuzu
Sep 10, 2014 11:24 PM CST

Plants Admin

Thank you very much!
Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
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dave
Sep 10, 2014 11:28 PM CST

Garden.org Admin

My pleasure!
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Weedwhacker
Sep 11, 2014 8:37 AM CST
Whatever else this thread has accomplished, it certainly has piqued my interest in miniature gardens! Looks like my project for the winter Smiling
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