Plant ID forum: Two suggestions when ID-ing plants

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Name: Deb
Pacific NW (Zone 8b)
Region: Pacific Northwest Deer Organic Gardener Ferns Herbs Dragonflies
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Bonehead
Jun 14, 2017 6:10 PM CST
Suggestion #1: I'm always a bit offended when plants are labeled as weeds, particularly in the plant ID forum. I think most 'weeds' are either non-native invasives (introduced plants from somewhere else which have developed a stronghold in an area they are not native to and which can be detrimental to natives) or native plants (often termed as weeds but just as often edible, medicinal, and/or a good source of fodder for local wildlife). I'd really like to see folks simply identify the plant (if they are able) and kind of leave off the name calling (which is how it strikes me). It IS useful to identify if the plant is in fact a native or non-native in specific regions, especially if they are on an invasive watch list for certain areas. More information is better than less.

Suggestion #2 (which segues with the above): I'd encourage folks to be a bit less strident about plants which they consider invasive. Some folks really take a kill-them-on-sight attitude, which may be perfectly valid in one region but not necessarily so in another. It may also be that one gardener has a much smaller area to work with and some plants that spread themselves freely may not be a good choice for that person. For others, however, that spreading habit may be welcomed. Again, more information is good, and it is certainly possible to provide it in a more neutral manner.

Just a couple minor pet peeves of mine. No offense intended, and no one in particular targeted.
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Name: Porkpal
Richmond, TX
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porkpal
Jun 14, 2017 6:24 PM CST
Adding a suggestion: I really appreciate it when the identifier includes both the scientific name and a common name - one to positively identify it and one I can possibly remember.
Porkpal
Name: Deb
Pacific NW (Zone 8b)
Region: Pacific Northwest Deer Organic Gardener Ferns Herbs Dragonflies
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Bonehead
Jun 14, 2017 6:47 PM CST
Good idea PorkPal. I enjoy seeing what different names come up from different regions for common names.
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
Name: Daisy I
Reno, Nv (Zone 6b)
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DaisyI
Jun 14, 2017 8:04 PM CST
Okay... Pet Peeves..

Mine is for the posters. I think it should be mandatory for new members to include their location (are you listening @Dave?).

Addressing Boneheads complaints: A common name is worth less than nothing. BUT should be included with the scientific name so folks can associate with something (not me, 'people').
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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
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Bonehead
Jun 14, 2017 8:28 PM CST
And I absolutely disagree with the location thing. I feel it is intrusive and off-putting for a brand new member to be rather chastised that they didn't (or weren't comfortable?) providing their location. You either recognize their plant or not. Doesn't matter where it is. If you don't know it, scroll down to the next one. Easy peasy. Same with a plant problem - address how you would deal with it in your region, perhaps with the caveat of "In the Pacific NW, I might blah blah blah." When and if the new member is comfortable with the community, they will complete their profiles as much as, or as little as, they like.

Re common names, as I said earlier I like seeing the differences between regions. I do agree that the botanical name is much more important, and linking in our database entry and/or other web sites to a potential ID is very helpful.

I enjoy the ID forum, each entry is like a mini-quiz for me and I like to learn to recognize new plants, particularly ones that are not common to my region.

Edited to add: I didn't view my suggestions as 'complaints' particularly. Perhaps I'm too literal...
I want to live in a world where the chicken can cross the road without its motives being questioned.
[Last edited by Bonehead - Jun 14, 2017 8:55 PM (+)]
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Name: Baja
Baja California (Zone 11b)
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Baja_Costero
Jun 14, 2017 9:59 PM CST
I think location info is helpful, and there is no reason people can't be as vague as they like in describing it (for purposes of privacy). There is no need to chastise anyone regardless... I am going to come down hard on the side recommending people provide the info (location, zone) which is most helpful in answering their question. Again, anyone who doesn't want to reveal their actual location can be as general as they like. Like me, or Deb, for example. Smiling

And regarding common names, I also find them less than useless, but there is some public service in providing them and especially in disambiguating the ones which are confusing or nonspecific. Clarity is what common names often lack, so any effort to pin them down can make a difference.
[Last edited by Baja_Costero - Jun 14, 2017 10:12 PM (+)]
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Name: Dave Whitinger
Jacksonville, Texas (Zone 8b)
Region: Texas Million Pollinator Garden Challenge Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Permaculture Raises cows
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dave
Jun 15, 2017 6:10 AM CST

Garden.org Admin

The location is indeed mandatory for posting in the Ask a Question and the Plant ID forum. The Plant ID requirement was instituted yesterday morning at @Calif_Sue's request. So from here out there will not be any posts made to either of those forums without a location. (As was pointed out above, the poster can enter whatever they want, including gibberish.)
Name: stone
near Macon Georgia (USA) (Zone 8a)
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stone
Jun 15, 2017 8:27 AM CST
Location helps...
Even general, like new england, or south east USA...
Most plants will easily be identified with such general description.
Not many plants endemic to a single state or county.
Agree that common names are helpful.
I get the botanical name by googling the common name...

Also agree that using the ' w' word should be limited.


God didn't create "weeds".

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