I’ve been sorting out the urls I’ve been saving for years; every now and then I move them to a different folder on an external drive, so that if the main pc goes down I don’t lose them. Thought it was about time I sorted them to see what I really want. Found over 17,000 of them – and nearly 2,000 just in my “gardening” subfolder!
A lot of them were for dwarf and miniature conifers, so I thought I’d check them, copy relevant data to a Word file, then chuck the link; all the data would be in one file where I could sort and compare types etc. (I only plan on maybe ten at the very most, but I want to make sure that there isn’t a mini-conifer that would be ideal for me if only I knew about it!)
So far I’ve spent four fun-packed days just doing that, and I’ve still only managed to wade through a tiny percentage of the links.
The information is so spotty, even very basic information, such as how tall and how wide a plant is. I’ve had to go to four or fives sites for each plant, and only if I’m lucky do I find one of these data, let along both of them.
I’ve spent most of today doing more wading, with very minimal success, and I’m in a mood for a bit of a rant!
I’ll ask my question here, in case you don’t make it to the end! Does anyone know of a site, or sites, that give plants’ mature heights and spreads? I’m particularly interested in conifers (rather, I’m particularly interested in miniature plants, and conifers seem to have cornered the market)
For a start, there’s a confusion of names: I found “Chamaecyparis lawsoniana Aurea” and Goggled for that, but also got:
Chamaecyparis lawsoniana nana ‘Aurea’
Chamaecyparis Obtusa ‘Aurea’
Are all these the same plant with slightly different labels? No point my looking for data for what might very well be a different plant!
So many sites that do manage to give a plant’s height don’t give the plant’s spread, which is of more immediate interest to me – the sky goes all the way up, but my ground space is severely limited, so the plant’s eventual spread will be the deciding factor.
Maybe some plants don’t actually have any width (I’d pay money to see a plant that had height but no width – but as it had zero width there’d be nothing to see!).
And even the heights given can’t be relied on: one plant’s height is given, on four sites, as ranging from 30cm to over 6 feet. Which is the true one? I’ve been trying to find the same measurement twice; then I can assume that that’s the real one.
There are several sites that give this type of very helpful information:
“Size: Height: 0 ft. to 0 ft. Width: 0 ft. to 0 ft.”
0 feet to 0 feet? Wow, that’s an amazing size range!
Some sites go into incredible detail yet still manage not to mention a plant’s size:
Trees or shrubs evergreen , monoecious or dioecious. Leaves decussate or in whorls of 3, scalelike and then often dimorphic with flattened facial leaves and keeled lateral leaves, or needlelike particularly in juvenile plants , often with an abaxial resin gland . Pollen cones terminal or axillary , solitary, maturing and shed annually; microsporophylls 6-16, decussate or whorled , each bearing (2 or) 3-6(-9) pollen sacs ; pollen wingless. Seed cones usually terminal, solitary, globose , ovoid , or oblong , dehiscent or indehiscent when mature in 1st or 2nd(or 3rd) year; cone scales developing after ovules originate in bract axils; bracts almost completely enveloped by cone scales, free only at apex; ovules 1-numerous per bract axil, erect ; cone scales of mature cones 3-16, flat or peltate, woody, leathery, or succulent, 1-20-seeded. Seeds winged or not; wings derived from seed coat . Cotyledons usually 2, rarely 3-6. Germination epigeal.
There were three pages of this – and still no “plant size” – and that’s the only datum I’m interested in (and this was for a plant that wasn’t even the one that I was Googling for!)
This is another site’s “overview”:
Overview When to plant Where to buy Growing Map
0 available for swap
They’ll tell you where to buy it and how to plant it and where it grows around the world, but still don’t tell you how big the thing can grow to. And that’s still not the exact name I put into search that Google fetched up.
Then there’s the endless, pointless lists …
‘Alumii Nana Compacta’
And so on, and on, and on. A lot of the names on that list are ones I’ve been searching for, but so what? None of them are clickable. It’s just a list that does nothing.
So I’ll repeat my question, now that you can see why!
Does anyone know a site or sites that might have the basic information about plants? RHS doesn’t, Shoot! doesn’t, nor does Dave’s Garden – not enough of them to make it worthwhile,
I feel a bit better now I’ve let off some steam!
- 9 Apr, 2013
- 2 likes
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