All Things Gardening forum: What plant descriptions really mean ....

Page 1 of 2 • 1 2
Views: 1381, Replies: 29 » Jump to the end
Name: Sasha Wiseman
Fl. (Zone 8b)
I'm quite frond of plants.
Garden Art Multi-Region Gardener Hummingbirder Keeper of Koi Seed Starter Enjoys or suffers hot summers
Fruit Growers Garden Ideas: Level 2
Image
DaisyRyder
Apr 6, 2017 1:53 PM CST
Whether it's in a garden catalog, seed packet or plant marker found in that potted plant at the store, I've found that some descriptions are either vague or have underlying messages.
I was having a tiresome day until I found these:

"Annuals" mean disappointment once a year.
"A favorite of birds" means to avoid planting near cars, sidewalks, or clotheslines.
"Carefree" refers more to the plant's attitude than to your workload.
"Vigorous" is code for "has a Napoleonic compulsion to take over the world."
"Zone 5 with protection" is a variation on the phrase "Russian roulette."
"May require support" means your daughter's engineering degree will finally pay off.
"Moisture-loving" plants are ideal for landscaping all your bogs and swamps.
"Grandma's Favorite" -- until she discovered free-flowering, disease-resistant hybrids.

Rolling on the floor laughing Green Grin! nodding nodding nodding Green Grin! Rolling on the floor laughing

Do you have any to add?


Thumb of 2017-04-06/DaisyRyder/e9ea5c

[Last edited by DaisyRyder - Apr 6, 2017 1:56 PM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #1407662 (1)
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
Not all who wander are lost
Garden Sages Plant Identifier
Image
DaisyI
Apr 6, 2017 3:52 PM CST
No, but I love yours. Rolling on the floor laughing
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a pretty and well preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and proclaiming...."WOW What a Ride!!" -Mark Frost

Webmaster: osnnv.org
Name: greene
Savannah, GA (Sunset 28) (Zone 8b)
My dogs love me; some people don't.
Deer Bookworm Keeper of Poultry Vermiculture Garden Ideas: Master Level Region: Georgia
Plant Identifier Rabbit Keeper Composter Garden Sages Native Plants and Wildflowers Herbs
Image
greene
Apr 6, 2017 4:02 PM CST
"Guaranteed to grow!!"...did we forget to mention the company does not offer a money-back guarantee. Rolling on the floor laughing
Sunset Zone 28, AHS Heat Zone 9, USDA zone 8b~"Leaf of Faith"
Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Seed Starter Vegetable Grower
Greenhouse Region: United States of America Region: Michigan Enjoys or suffers cold winters Butterflies Birds
Image
Weedwhacker
Apr 11, 2017 8:29 AM CST
"Low-acid tomato" = doesn't taste like a tomato. (Okay, maybe that's just me!)

The plant descriptions seem to be a lot like real estate descriptions, don't they! Hilarious!
โ€œThink occasionally of the suffering of which you spare yourself the sight." ~ Albert Schweitzer /
Cubits.org - A Universe of Communities[/I] / Share your recipes: Favorite Recipes A-Z cubit
C/F temp conversion / NGA Member Map
Name: Deb
Pacific NW (Zone 8b)
Region: Pacific Northwest Deer Organic Gardener Ferns Herbs Dragonflies
Spiders! Dog Lover Keeper of Poultry Birds Fruit Growers Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Image
Bonehead
Apr 11, 2017 2:23 PM CST
When I say a plant is 'jolly' what I really mean is - watch out, this will spread everywhere!
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
Name: Sasha Wiseman
Fl. (Zone 8b)
I'm quite frond of plants.
Garden Art Multi-Region Gardener Hummingbirder Keeper of Koi Seed Starter Enjoys or suffers hot summers
Fruit Growers Garden Ideas: Level 2
Image
DaisyRyder
Apr 15, 2017 8:53 AM CST
A weed = "is a plant that has mastered every survival skill except for learning how to grow in rows."
Name: kathy
Michigan
Zone 4b, near St. Clair MI
Cottage Gardener Lilies Organic Gardener
Image
katesflowers
Apr 15, 2017 9:54 AM CST
Very funny - thanks for the day brightener ! Reminded me of when I worked for a landscaper back in the 60's, and his motto was his plant stock was "guaranteed for the life of the plant".
"Things won are done, joy's soul lies in the doing." Shakespeare
Name: Sandy B.
Ford River, Michigan UP (Zone 4b)
(Zone 4b-maybe 5a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Sages Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Seed Starter Vegetable Grower
Greenhouse Region: United States of America Region: Michigan Enjoys or suffers cold winters Butterflies Birds
Image
Weedwhacker
Apr 15, 2017 10:41 AM CST
katesflowers said:Very funny - thanks for the day brightener ! Reminded me of when I worked for a landscaper back in the 60's, and his motto was his plant stock was "guaranteed for the life of the plant".


Love that -- I'm going to add it to my "guarantees" for the veggie seedlings that I give away every spring. The other is "satisfaction guaranteed or double your money back." Hilarious!
โ€œThink occasionally of the suffering of which you spare yourself the sight." ~ Albert Schweitzer /
Cubits.org - A Universe of Communities[/I] / Share your recipes: Favorite Recipes A-Z cubit
C/F temp conversion / NGA Member Map
Texas (Zone 8a)
Passionate about Native Plants
Region: Texas Butterflies Salvias Garden Photography Native Plants and Wildflowers Bee Lover
Birds Hummingbirder Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Image
GrammaChar
Apr 15, 2017 9:43 PM CST
When I give away plants that qualify as rampant self-seeders, I ask that the recipient sign a release form to absolve me of any responsibility.

The one package instruction I ignore is: Full Sun. Maybe in Vermont; not in Texas where it's referred to as the Death Star. Another shaky description is : Drought Tolerant. That translated means after you've watered it for two years to get it established.

Love your original post, Sasha.


GrammaChar
Name: Yardenman
Maryland (Zone 7a)
Image
Yardenman
Apr 17, 2017 1:49 AM CST
If the only picture the catalogue shows is the flower of a plant, it means it is tiny and insignificant.

"Deer-resistant" means they eat it last.

"Spreads well" means that you will never get rid of it.

Every professional picture of a plant is taken in 12 hours of full sun in an open field. At the ONE moment of perfect sunlight. And the plant was coddled daily for weeks for the purpose of getting one good picture.



Name: Sasha Wiseman
Fl. (Zone 8b)
I'm quite frond of plants.
Garden Art Multi-Region Gardener Hummingbirder Keeper of Koi Seed Starter Enjoys or suffers hot summers
Fruit Growers Garden Ideas: Level 2
Image
DaisyRyder
Apr 17, 2017 9:42 AM CST
Very funny Yardenman. Lol! Rolling on the floor laughing Rolling on the floor laughing Rolling on the floor laughing
Name: Mary
Lake Stevens, WA (Zone 8a)
Near Seattle
Bookworm Garden Photography Plant and/or Seed Trader Plays in the sandbox Region: Pacific Northwest Seed Starter
Winter Sowing
Image
Pistil
Apr 21, 2017 9:37 AM CST
In Seattle, a label that says 2-3 feet tall and 2-3 feet wide means 6-7 feet tall and 8 feet wide.

In Seattle, "Bait for slugs" on a label means exactly what it says. Or you will never see your plant again.

In a garden book a plant described as "choice" means it is hard to grow, is boring and has flowers that are nice if you lie on your belly and use a magnifying glass.

Rose label that says "Disease resistant" means if you spray with toxic chemicals weekly from March to November it will survive and look terrible due to disease. If it does not say disease resistant it will survive and look terrible due to disease.
Name: Carter Mayer
Houston, TX (Zone 9b)
Tropicals Adeniums Plant Identifier
Image
Carter
Apr 28, 2017 3:59 PM CST
One of my pet peeves is how color blind some plant/nurserymen can be.

Light lavender, lavender, dark lavender, purple, dark purple - basically any shade of purple - are not blue.

Pink (no matter how dark pink) and magenta are not RED! They are pink (maybe dark pink) & magenta.
Name: Tiffany purpleinopp
Opp, AL ๐ŸŒต๐ŸŒทโš˜๐ŸŒน๐ŸŒป (Zone 8b)
Houseplants Organic Gardener Composter Region: Gulf Coast Miniature Gardening Native Plants and Wildflowers
Tropicals Butterflies Garden Sages Cactus and Succulents Plant Identifier Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Image
purpleinopp
Apr 28, 2017 4:31 PM CST
House plant label that says "thrives in low light" means the amount of light equivalent to under the other plants outside in the jungle, not in a dark corner inside a building.
๐Ÿ‘€๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ˜‚ - SMILE! -โ˜บ๐Ÿ˜Žโ˜ปโ˜ฎ๐Ÿ‘ŒโœŒโˆžโ˜ฏ๐Ÿฃ๐Ÿฆ๐Ÿ”๐Ÿ๐Ÿฏ๐Ÿพ
The less I interfere, the more balance mother nature provides.
๐Ÿ‘’๐ŸŽ„๐Ÿ‘ฃ๐Ÿก๐Ÿƒ๐Ÿ‚๐ŸŒพ๐ŸŒฟ๐Ÿโฆโง ๐Ÿƒ๐Ÿ๐Ÿ‚๐ŸŒพ๐ŸŒป๐ŸŒธ๐ŸŒผ๐ŸŒน๐ŸŒฝโ€โ˜€๐ŸŒบ
โ˜•๐Ÿ‘“ The only way to succeed is to try.
Name: Carol Roberts
Huntington Beach, CA (Zone 10b)
Sunset 24
Container Gardener Foliage Fan Annuals Dog Lover
Image
CarolHB
Apr 28, 2017 4:57 PM CST
Thank you, @Carter. I sometimes feel like I'm the only one in the room who can tell the difference between blue, purple, lavendar, orchid (pinker than blue and rather saturated as opposed to lavendar), and so on. Now that I know there's one other person who gets it, I shall become more assertive about colors - or, maybe I'll just get my old color theory instructor on the job.
Can't complain too loud about how the ball bounces when I'm the one who dropped it.
Eastern Massachusetts (Zone 5b)
jsf67
Apr 28, 2017 5:37 PM CST
CarolHB said: I sometimes feel like I'm the only one in the room who can tell the difference between blue, purple, lavendar, orchid (pinker than blue and rather saturated as opposed to lavendar), and so on.


I got lost on the line in the poem "violets are blue". I'm never quite sure whether that color is violet or purple. But it's not blue.

Then there are all the shades that look to me just a hint whiter than purple, but everyone else says are pink (while the color I think is "pink" looks very different from those). My favorite sail long ago for my wind surfer (before my mother in law decided I had too much stuff in my garage and threw out that sail) had been advertised (mail order) as "purple" and looked purple to me and everyone said I was using a pink sail.

So I won't be the one who ever understands what color "lavender" or "orchid" is.

But on the specific subject you replied to, I never went with my wife when various nurseries talked her into various plants. So I don't know (nor think it matters) what color the nursery said the flowers would be on the shrub that several years later (meaning now) finally produced purple (unless I'm totally confused, which we can't rule out) flowers.

[Last edited by jsf67 - Apr 28, 2017 5:41 PM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #1427570 (16)
Name: UrbanWild
Kentucky (Zone 6b)
Kentucky - borderline of 6a & 6b
Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Native Plants and Wildflowers Miniature Gardening Organic Gardener Frogs and Toads Dog Lover
Birds Vegetable Grower Spiders! Hummingbirder Butterflies Critters Allowed
Image
UrbanWild
Apr 28, 2017 8:44 PM CST
jsf67 said: I got lost on the line in the poem "violets are blue". I'm never quite sure whether that color is violet or purple. But it's not blue.


Whistling
[img] http://img08.deviantart.net/b0... [/img]
Always looking for interesting plants for pollinators and food! Bonus points for highly, and pleasantly scented plants.

"Si hortum in bibliotheca habes, nihil deerit." [โ€œIf you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.โ€] -- Marcus Tullius Cicero in Ad Familiares IX, 4, to Varro. 46 BCE
Name: Deb
Pacific NW (Zone 8b)
Region: Pacific Northwest Deer Organic Gardener Ferns Herbs Dragonflies
Spiders! Dog Lover Keeper of Poultry Birds Fruit Growers Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Image
Bonehead
Apr 28, 2017 8:50 PM CST
I'm also pretty strict about what is blue. I really appreciate a clear blue flower and get annoyed at purple flowers that claim to be blue. Same thing with purportedly black flowers, they are most often just a really deep purple. I don't get as tweaky about those because they don't draw my fancy. I actually have a difficult time searching our database based on color because I never know what one person will call a particular shade of purple - lilac, lavender, purple, etc. Actually I have pretty poor luck with any search and just end up scrolling through to find what I'm looking for.
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
Eastern Massachusetts (Zone 5b)
jsf67
Apr 29, 2017 4:28 AM CST
So far as I understand, a camera isn't seeing color quite the same way our eyes do and a monitor isn't reproducing color quite right.
Some colors look to me in person like they change aspects other than brightness as the brightness of the light changes. But most things seem to stay the same color as the amount of light changes because they fit my unconscious expectations for what the same color would look like in different light.
But I've never owned a camera that reproduces anything like that effect. A longer exposure in lower light produces similar overall brightness and contrast, but significantly different colors. So if you looked at any of the purple flower pictures I posted, the exact shade of purple in the picture has little connection to the shade of purple that was really there.

So I feel like I'm missing the point in your comparison of color names vs. true color in database folders. Of course you are correct that the color names won't correspond well with the truth. But I would think the photos wouldn't have any more correspondence with true color than the names do.
Name: Deb
Pacific NW (Zone 8b)
Region: Pacific Northwest Deer Organic Gardener Ferns Herbs Dragonflies
Spiders! Dog Lover Keeper of Poultry Birds Fruit Growers Million Pollinator Garden Challenge
Image
Bonehead
Apr 29, 2017 8:23 AM CST
I agree with that as well. I use two monitors side by side and the exact same photo is depicted quite differently on each screen. My larger screen is more true to life. Anything in the purple family seems particularly difficult to get an accurate representation. I suppose there are ways to adjust the screens, but I am pretty hands-off on anything involving technology. If it's working, leave it be.
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.

Page 1 of 2 • 1 2

« Garden.org Homepage
« Back to the top
« Forums List
« All Things Gardening forum
You must first create a username and login before you can reply to this thread.

Member Login:

Username:

Password:

[ Join now ]

Today's site banner is by bloominholes2fill and is called "Hemerocallis Daylily 'Wild and Wonderful'"