Site Talk forum: Recommendations

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Name: Larry
Enterprise, Al. 36330 (Zone 8b)
Region: Alabama Composter Garden Photography Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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Seedfork
Jan 30, 2014 4:27 PM CST
During this lull in the gardening period, at least for a lot of us I am wondering if there is a place here for recommendations. Things like best gardening book, great gardening video, really informative new article. Mostly new and up to date stuff, but like flowers the classics would be nice to know also. One of my favorite books is "The Complete Compost Gardening Guide" so I will use that as an example. I found this article on about soil testing to be one of the best I have read: http://www.cals.ncsu.edu/agcomm/publications/Ag-614.pdf
I just think ideas like that would give use something to do on days the garden is not available. I did not realize the huge difference in a ph of 6 and one of 8.
Name: woofie
NE WA (Zone 5a)
Charter ATP Member Garden Procrastinator Greenhouse Dragonflies Plays in the sandbox I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
The WITWIT Badge I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Dog Lover Enjoys or suffers cold winters Container Gardener Seed Starter
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woofie
Jan 30, 2014 4:31 PM CST
You know, that is a good idea! We do have a place for recommending vendors, but not a good place for just general recommendations for other items of interest. Maybe a "sticky" in the All Things Gardening forum would be a good spot for something like this?
Confidence is that feeling you have right before you do something really stupid.
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
Jan 30, 2014 4:54 PM CST

Garden.org Admin

That's an interesting idea. I like the idea of a collection of informative links along with recommendations for tools and what not. I'll give this some thought!
Name: woofie
NE WA (Zone 5a)
Charter ATP Member Garden Procrastinator Greenhouse Dragonflies Plays in the sandbox I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
The WITWIT Badge I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Dog Lover Enjoys or suffers cold winters Container Gardener Seed Starter
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woofie
Jan 30, 2014 5:14 PM CST
Thumbs up Thanks, dave! Smiling
Confidence is that feeling you have right before you do something really stupid.
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
Jan 30, 2014 6:21 PM CST
I have a few stream-of-consciousness musings. Not really enough to count as "thoughts".

I love the idea of collecting recommendations of things in addition to vendors!

But sometimes I get tired of scrolling past 3-4 stickies at the top of some forums. Especially when the sticky is long and chatty, and the real reference part is just part of 1-2 posts.

Maybe there could be something more like a reference library, even if part of it paralleled the forum structure. We would know to GO to the library to find the FAQs and stickies, instead of having reference material in the most heavily traveled part of the forums.

Hmm, we could solicit initial content for that library with idea-of-the-day type discussions. "My Favorite X". Give people several weeks to get info together and contribute it by just posting to a comment thread, then some volunteer would condense the threads. At work, we have peer reviews after that kind of thing.

There might be an ongoing process for adding to lists of recommendations. If not moderated, maybe a system like "Thumbs" for agreeing and comments for disagreeing.

I've been thinking about some way to condense or combine some of the forums' sticky threads, without stepping on anyone's toes. No ideas, really. Unless they could be pushed to the left with an icon like "see this forum's stickies" or "view and add to FAQs". "Adding" should be moderated, or a group effort of some kind. Perhaps links to recent posts that got many thumbs, or links to long-term favorites like "most stars".


Name: Larry
Enterprise, Al. 36330 (Zone 8b)
Region: Alabama Composter Garden Photography Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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Seedfork
Jan 30, 2014 7:42 PM CST
Rick
I had not even thought about discussion of the topics, I was thinking about just maybe a forum: example "Recommendations"- If you had a book, video, or article just put in a link or short description (not a summery, just a title or enough description to describe the subject). New ones would hopefully appear every day or so. Your idea of voting on them I think would be great, but I don't see how you could have discussions about them in the same location. If an item got enough votes it could somehow be a featured Recommendation and some means of discussing it might could be figured out. Maybe it could be added the the appropriate forum for discussion, ex. an article about roses receives twenty thumbs it could be discussed in the rose forum. Just something real simple list of suggested items to help educate and keep us involved. So if we are not posting or listening to the pod cast(which I just finished doing, love the pod casts) we could sill have something of interest to check out. I am constantly searching the web for interesting videos and articles but I know a lot of people don't have the time or interest in doing that on their own.
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
Jan 30, 2014 8:19 PM CST
>> I had not even thought about discussion of the topics,

I agree that getting the recommendations is the most valuable thing.

I mentioned "discussion threads" as one possible way to stimulate contributions. Seeing a discussion where several people listed their favorite "X" might encourage more people to chime in than a simple request would.

Like priming a pump.

But those were totally off-the-cuff musings. I wish I had a good idea about how to organize them or where to put them!

Here's more brainstorming or random musing:

You said:
>> I was thinking about just maybe a forum: example "Recommendations"- If you had a book, video, or article just put in a link or short description (not a summery, just a title or enough description to describe the subject).

Like a forum where most threads would only be one post long? Like one recommendation per post?

Or a forum with threads like
"Videos"
"Books"
"Links to online articles"
"webcasts"
???

I'm thinking that there might be a use for two kinds of areas: one to collect recommendations. Another to organize them for convenient access or browsing. Either one might have a use for discussions and comments ... but it would be nice if some organized archive had a way to browse them concisely.

Hmm, I wonder if the Dewey Decimal System has a useful breakdown of All Things Plants and Gardening?



Name: Larry
Enterprise, Al. 36330 (Zone 8b)
Region: Alabama Composter Garden Photography Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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Seedfork
Jan 30, 2014 8:36 PM CST
Too confusing for me, I'll let Dave think on it.
Name: Jo Ann Gentle
Pittsford NY (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Heucheras Hellebores Container Gardener
Birds Region: New York Irises Garden Ideas: Master Level Avid Green Pages Reviewer Lilies
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ge1836
Jan 31, 2014 11:58 AM CST
This is a great idea and welcome if Dave can manage it.
I also find good videos on You tube by just searching what ever plant I want. Its not vast or complete .But if you want to know about Hellebore Care ,they have it.
Name: Rick R.
near Minneapolis, MN zone 4a
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages The WITWIT Badge Garden Photography Region: Minnesota Plant Identifier
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Leftwood
Feb 1, 2014 11:06 AM CST
Other forum sites often have a dedicated thread(s) called: "Books you may be interested in", "Books and video recommendations" or some such.
The thread is then recalled and added to as new additions warrant.

At this site, if we have a separate forum for recommendations, I would never visit it. If I am interested in composting (for example), I don't want to wade through recommendations for good books on shade gardening to find something on composting. Conversely, EVERYONE who visits the Shade Gardening forum will benefit from shade gardening book recommendations. It is my opinion that such recommendations be placed in their corresponding, preexisting forums.

I'm not fond of long lists of stickies, either. Sticky or not, if we don't want a recommendation thread, perhaps a "Recommend in this forum" button can be considered. This would be unique to each forum, only visible on that particular forum's page (not in the left sidebar). I might also suggest this not be in thread discussion format. Rather, a design similar to the already existing vendor recommendations could be appropriate. Whenever a new recommendation is added, the button could change color, flash or do something that could attract attention until viewed, just like a thread.
Name: Greene
Savannah, GA (Sunset 28) (Zone 8b)
Rabbit Keeper Critters Allowed Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Plant Identifier Garden Ideas: Master Level Garden Sages
Herbs Region: Georgia Region: United States of America Native Plants and Wildflowers Dog Lover Composter
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greene
Feb 1, 2014 12:18 PM CST
I agree that stickies get in the (my) way and are (IMO) too wordy.

One of my pet peeves (not that anyone asked) is that people tend to forget that at some time in the future someone may be researching and have to wade through thread titles that start with 'I really hate...' 'I like this one...' 'can you help me with...'

If people would think up front and put the subject first, example: 'Hellebores, this is a great link for' then a year from now it will be easier to find.

If @dave does make a place for the book/video/link/site type of recommendations I hope my small suggestion will help people to find what they need.

Just my 2 cents.
Sunset Zone 28, AHS Heat Zone 9, USDA zone 8b~~"Leaf of Faith"
Name: woofie
NE WA (Zone 5a)
Charter ATP Member Garden Procrastinator Greenhouse Dragonflies Plays in the sandbox I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
The WITWIT Badge I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Dog Lover Enjoys or suffers cold winters Container Gardener Seed Starter
Image
woofie
Feb 1, 2014 12:27 PM CST
I'd like to see it as a separate section, just like the vendor recommendations, except with an area to put in a general subject of the recommendation, and maybe a checkbox to indicate if it's a book, or a website, or a video or whatever.
Confidence is that feeling you have right before you do something really stupid.
Name: Karen
Cincinnati, Oh (Zone 6a)
Forum moderator I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cut Flowers Winter Sowing Charter ATP Member Seed Starter
Echinacea Plant and/or Seed Trader Region: Ohio Region: United States of America Butterflies Hummingbirder
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kqcrna
Feb 1, 2014 1:17 PM CST
I agree with Woofie that a separate section would be most useful.

Consider: Someone looking for a recommendation for a good shovel doesn't want to have to work through every forum to find an answer. But a good shovel could fit in with annuals, perennials, shrubs, bulbs, veggies, etc. A separate section would be preferable I think. That could be subdivided by subjects such as books, tools, etc, but probably not necessary.

Karen
Name: Larry
Enterprise, Al. 36330 (Zone 8b)
Region: Alabama Composter Garden Photography Garden Ideas: Master Level Plant Identifier Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
Seedfork
Feb 1, 2014 1:46 PM CST
So often there are just a few posts in the "watched forums" I get all caught up . I thought the Recommendations would be good to explore new ideas and not be so limited in subject matter as one forum might be. True, it would not be a forum of interest to everyone, it would be the type of forum you would occasionally check in on.
Name: Rick R.
near Minneapolis, MN zone 4a
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages The WITWIT Badge Garden Photography Region: Minnesota Plant Identifier
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Leftwood
Feb 1, 2014 3:54 PM CST
>>>>I thought the Recommendations would be good to explore new ideas and not be so limited in subject matter as one forum might be.

That would be a good reason. It just wouldn't be for me. Smiling

[Last edited by Leftwood - Feb 1, 2014 7:09 PM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #548548 (15)
Name: Marilyn
Northern KY (Zone 6a)
Laughter is the best medicine!
Rabbit Keeper Birds Hummingbirder Salvias Xeriscape Organic Gardener
Container Gardener Cottage Gardener Bee Lover Forum moderator Butterflies Apples
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Marilyn
Feb 2, 2014 2:25 PM CST
dave said:That's an interesting idea. I like the idea of a collection of informative links along with recommendations for tools and what not. I'll give this some thought!


Maybe it could go into the Goodies section?!

Welcome to the Agastache and Salvias Forum!

Hummingbirds are beautiful flying jewels in the garden!


Name: Arlene
Southold, Long Island, NY (Zone 7a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Tomato Heads Houseplants Garden Ideas: Level 1 Photo Contest Winner: 2014 Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Plant Identifier
pirl
Feb 2, 2014 8:01 PM CST
Great idea, Marilyn.
Name: Reid
North Branch, MN (Zone 4b)
Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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Anderwood
Feb 6, 2014 4:41 PM CST
dirtdoctor.com
chiotsrun.com
awaytogarden.com

Books:

Any book by Elliot Coleman, for more northern gardeners. He writes a lot about growing in all four seasons.

The Vegetable Gardener's Bible.

Northern Gardener Magazine, written by the MN Horticultural Society.

Creative Vegetable Gardening



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
Feb 6, 2014 4:57 PM CST
Oriental Vegetables: The Complete Guide for the Gardening Cook
by Joy Larkcom


The Complete Book of Garden Magic
January 1, 1956
by Roy Edwin Biles

Name: woofie
NE WA (Zone 5a)
Charter ATP Member Garden Procrastinator Greenhouse Dragonflies Plays in the sandbox I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
The WITWIT Badge I helped plan and beta test the plant database. Dog Lover Enjoys or suffers cold winters Container Gardener Seed Starter
Image
woofie
Feb 6, 2014 5:47 PM CST
Ha! If we're throwing recommendations into this thread, one of my favorite cookbooks is "Too Many Tomatoes, Squash, Beans, and Other Good Things," subtitled "A cookbook for when your garden explodes." Green Grin!
Confidence is that feeling you have right before you do something really stupid.

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