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Forum slowdown?

Posted by bill_ri_z6b (My Page) on
Fri, Jan 15, 10 at 18:13

Seems there's not so much interest in a lot of these forums. This New England Gardening forum is moderately active, and the Palms forum is pretty active, but many of the other ones are virtually inactive.

As for this forum, I can understand it being slow during the holidays, what with everyone busy and not much going on garden-wise in our area, but it's a new year, new plants, etc. and still seems kind of slow. And when there are new posts it's the same few people it seems. Not complaining, just an observation.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Forum slowdown?

  • Posted by claire z6b Coastal MA (My Page) on
    Fri, Jan 15, 10 at 20:28

Well, it always slows down around now, but this is a little extreme. A while ago during a slow period, someone suggested that members were off on Facebook or other social networking sites. That may be so - that's not my style.

Usually in the winter I'd be posting about birds on the Project FeederWatch threads with one or two other people contributing (and lurkers watching). However, this year the other main birdwatcher/poster has not been on the forum and I have not felt that there's a significant interest in birds out there, so I've let it slide.

Spring should bring a thaw and people will probably come back. I'll continue to check the forum and post if I feel I have something of general interest to say or point out, but maybe this dormancy is necessary.

Claire


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RE: Forum slowdown?

It may seem harsh but I believe the lack of traffic on GW is not a trend that will dramatically reverse itself come spring. I think there are a multitude of things that caused the slow and painful demise of a once active site none of which will ever reverse themselves and change the course for Garden Web, much like I do not believe I will ever abandon my computer for my old metal filing cabinet and electric typewriter.

In my opinion, without improving the technical aspects of the site itself I dont see how GW is going to attract a new cycle of interested folks. How many gardeners new to the horticultural internet are going to tolerate the antiquated technical demands of GW when the ease of snapping a photo with your phone camera and emailing it to your blog, youtube, or facebook page, is todays norm?

As it stands today there are a few tenacious regular posters throughout Garden Web who are holding on but who seem to be less and less willing to invest their time and effort initiating horticultural discussions that at best ignite a minimal response. Without the participation of new to Garden Web posters threads often read like private discussions over heard at a garden club meeting. This exclusive rather than inclusive style of posting makes it less likely that the rare newby would jump into the conversation.

So why has new traffic to Garden Web declined dramatically and all but dried up over the last few years? Lets begin by looking at who has the most at stake should traffic numbers continued to drop and what if anything that might mean to them. Garden Webs parent company certainly dropped the ball when it came to linking its other media holdings that discussed house and garden issues (ie the Today show), to ivillage at the end of a segment. I admit In 2007 Angela Matusik Chief Content Executive for ivillage had made an effort through media linking to bring traffic to GW but in my view it was minimal and like all decisions made by the parent company was so short lived it really never had an opportunity to fairly weigh its success or failure.

I also believe that the lack of traffic on GW is partly due to the splintered horticultural community in general on the internet, tv, and magazines. The market has become so fragmented that it is impossible to even direct someone newly interested in gardening to where they can get the best answers for their questions any longer. Certainly the most frustrated by this are those folks who try to earn a living writing for the horticultural community. They realize how difficult it is for the average reader to wade through the sea of information (some accurate, some not) to find their researched piece.

Just some thoughts


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RE: Forum slowdown?

Most of the forums here slow down over the winter. Some pick up though. Bird watching is fairly active, and the Winter Sowing forum is practically hopping off the screen this year.

You bring up some interesting points KT. Have no idea what the traffic stats on GW and how it has trended over the years. From reading historical threads, it seems a lot of posters left after iVillage bought the website. There is a lot of excellent information in older posts and it's too bad they eventually fall off the forums and GW is losing a goldmine of information.

The forum format here at GW could certainly stand some simple technical upgrades. Like being able to edit a post and to post a picture easily. An improved search function would greatly enhance the site. One thing I like about forums is being able to "dig in" to a topic and read multiple threads on the topic. This would be greatly facilitated with a better search. Then the average reader who is trying to wade through a sea of information could come this site, and more easily find what they're looking for.


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RE: Forum slowdown?

Gee, I was just going to say that I've been busy...

LOL! Seriously, I have noticed that things have really been slower than usual. But I also know that I haven't been posting here - or even reading here - as much, but in my case it's a new infatuation - genealogy. After several years of poking around half-heartedly, I finally threw myself into my research more seriously and have recently made some exciting jumps over to the old country. So - I admit it! - I've joined some genealogy forums and have been busy with them.

Gee, I feel so guilty, like I've cheated on you guys, lol.

But you all have raised some good points - much more thoughtful and observant points than I would have made. I do hope that things will pick up in a few weeks when the weather starts to warm. I'd hate to see the demise of GW.

:)
Dee


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RE: Forum slowdown?

I was looking at the Perennials Forum and Ken threw out a bunch of questions in separate posts. They generated a fair amount of traffic. Take a look; what about the posts interested people enough to reply?

Are the other regional sites slow? I wonder if the drop off in participants is more noticeable on those, while perennials draws from the entire country.

Idabean


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RE: Forum slowdown?

  • Posted by claire z6b Coastal MA (My Page) on
    Sun, Jan 17, 10 at 12:57

Idabean: I just took a quick look at the NEWBIE: posts on the Perennials Forum; I'll go back and read them thoroughly later. These are general topics, of interest to both new gardeners and experienced gardeners. You can either learn from them or add your own experiences - very nice threads! They'd make good FAQ's.

Good point about the regional forums; I haven't looked, but I suspect most of them, at least the northern ones, have slowed down too.

I tend to visit the Building a Home, Bird Watching and Soil, Compost and Mulch forums besides the New England Gardening forum. The first three are active - these are nationwide (some global) and the posts concern issues that are important to people right now. Thinking about it, many of the recent threads here have been about current issues, such as SALES! or winter sowing or garden planning.

Maybe we just don't have much to talk about right now - sort of a lull in the conversation when topics are getting scarce.

Claire


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RE: Forum slowdown?

New England is my favorite forum and I'm interested all year. Like politics, all gardening is local, IMHO. I'm interested in horticulture, of course, but also design, garden history, garden visiting, books and magazines about gardening etc. They are great winter topics but I'm not sure too many people share those interests.

Where is Sedum37, for instance? She loves to visit gardens--in addition to gardening--but hasn't posted in awhile. Hope all is ok.

I'm afraid to post this question but it's the big one. Do you think there is a decline in interest in gardening and that's why the forums have slowed down?


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RE: Forum slowdown?

  • Posted by claire z6b Coastal MA (My Page) on
    Sun, Jan 17, 10 at 17:31

"Do you think there is a decline in interest in gardening and that's why the forums have slowed down?"

I suspect it's not a major decline in interest in gardening, but that we've been in an unsustainable gardening bubble recently. A lot of people jumped in, but discovered that you can't just establish a mature garden in one year. Or two. Some will stay and learn to swim, others will climb out of the pool and go try something else.

Was it Mark Twain who said "The reports of my death are greatly exaggerated." or something like that (I'm too lazy right now to google the correct quotation.

Claire


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RE: Forum slowdown?

I don't think there is a decline in interest in gardening. Quite the contrary it seems. This is more and more the "do-it-yourself" era, what with Home Depot and Lowes in the picture. But I think that a lot of people go to such places along with bigger localized nurseries, and then deal with "experts" (?) and settle for what they are told. I think they feel that the salesperson knows 1% more than they do, so that's as far as they need look for information. Also, most people have only a limited time to invest in gardens. They have so many things going on and so the gardening only gets so much of an investment of their time, whether to actually do gardening work or to learn more.
Just my comments.


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Unless my counting is off, this current page of 30 threads is now covering a shorter time span than the like page of Jan.08 and Jan.09. I agree with almost everyone who has posted a view and concern on this topic. I think that fact that there IS concern is enough to prove how much people care about the NE Forum. There is a diehard core of participants who'll keep the ship afloat and welcome newbies as I was once welcomed. The economy is also a large factor. In The Hartford Courant, foreclosures have never before taken multiples pages appearing in the paper once a week. Since beginning a count on June 5,2009, to date, there have been 1071 foreclosures listed in the paper and that is not all of Hartford County-just county-not the state. A lot of homes, perhaps a lot of unattended gardens.

It was Twain and I have a black tee shirt with that quote on it written in white. It's good for margarita parties.

Has anyone read or looked at the book titled, "Gardens: An Essay on the Human Condition"? Not the lightest reading, but it sure helps put the pieces together as to WHY we garden and other than eating, why the spirit needs to garden.
It is now sixty-one 61 days till spring!

Jane

Here is a link that might be useful: Gardens: An Essay on the Human Condition


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RE: Forum slowdown?

  • Posted by claire z6b Coastal MA (My Page) on
    Sun, Jan 17, 10 at 20:16

I haven't read that book, but it reminds me that I've been thinking for a few years now that we need an FAQ on good books for gardening in New England. New gardeners often ask for recommendations.

Maybe I'll post a new thread, as soon as I can find the previous threads I clipped or saved a while ago. They're in this computer somewhere.....

Claire (good thread, Bill)


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RE: Forum slowdown?

I'm glad that there seems to be interest in the level of interest in this forum! That's a good sign.
I'm not sure that foreclosures and economy are affecting this forum so much. I would think that anyone who is teetering on the edge financially would probably be working a lot (everyone in the household has to work, possibly multiple jobs) just to pay the mortgage. They most likely would not have the time or the money to really get into gardening and just have the contractor's landscape package (yews and a PJM rhodie). They may want to garden, but are not able to do it yet and probably wouldn't be seeking a forum such as this.

When I went to the Chelsea Flower Show last May, it was so interesting to see that in England there is such an interest in gardening. Even the children showed such interest and it was funny to hear them calling out names of plants and flowers. I'm not sure why that is, but I do know that the emphasis on gardening is apparent at every level there. The government, the news, the schools and more all seem to highlight the importance and rewards of gardening. Lot's of shows and competitions and so forth. I just don't see that here and I don't know why that is nor how it could be initiated. But it would be nice if gardening were encouraged more here in the US.


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RE: Forum slowdown?

I don't think it's a lack of interest in gardening as much as a lack of interest in the topics that are brought up here. Half the time (or more!), the topics are only loosely related to gardening and not of general interest. I occasionally find a topic that catches my eye but more times than not I briefly survey the thread titles and then promptly go to another forum because I don't find any of the topics interesting. I hang out in the Trees Forum most of the time and it's much faster paced than this one. But then again, that forum keeps every topic on topic and everyone going to that Forum gets their "fix" of tree information.


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Tree Oracle, nice to see you post again. I appreciate your willingness to offer your personal reasons for not posting here more often, something I've been reluctant to do. I've been on GW for at least 12 years and the NE forum was my favorite forum, but I also stopped posting here and found other forums. I hate to say it, but someone asked. I felt the forum lost some of it's friendliness for me and sometimes feels clique-ish. I also have found in the past couple of years, the topics have been less interesting.

Tree Oracle, you obviously enjoy the topic of trees, but what would you consider 'on topic' for a New England forum?

I don't even know what topics would be of more interest to me. I have been on GW long enough, that I am just 'talked out' on some topics. So what is interesting to me has changed, too.


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Prairiemoon,
I'm fairly new here, so I can't say anything about this forum having lost it's friendliness. As for it's being "clique-ish" I do see where it's generally the same few people posting but I don't know if that constitutes a clique. I do feel that a lot of the threads aren't so much about actual gardening (i.e. plants, growing tips, experiences, new plants, etc.). In any case, I haven't been on long enough to see a trend other than the topic of my original post that started this thread. It would be nice to see more activity and some exciting and useful topics.


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RE: Forum slowdown?

Hi Bill,

I haven't been posting regularly for the past two years at least, so I'm not really referring to whatever has been happening recently. Just offering one person's reason why they stopped posting, for informational value beyond theories of why there is less activity.

This subject of why there is less activity has been brought up before, so people do seem to express interest in why it is slow here every once in awhile, but so far, I've not seen that bring about a change. I don't know how other regional forums do, but more than other forums, I think the regional forums are about relationships because you have a group that share their location in common, so the group stays more static, then say winter sowing. So when people don't get along, it becomes uncomfortable.

Well, Bill, you are new with no old problems to hinder you. If you have an interest in trying to stimulate discussion, I'd say keep making the effort and start some threads on subjects that you find interesting and see where it goes. Do you have favorite topics?

pm2


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Ginny, I would enjoy reading threads on the topics you mentioned, just not sure I would be a very knowledgeable participant. [g]


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Prairiemoon2, I don't think anyone has to be an expert to be a good participant. One of the things that's so interesting about these garden forums is the conversation among all levels of experience. Lots of times, the non-expert asks the best questions or has an insight others will miss.


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RE: Forum slowdown?

Prariemoon,
I have posted regarding my personal interests in growing things that are not so common in my area as well as trying newer hardier varieties of plants that are not normally seen here. For example, cactus, camellias, gardenias, trunk forming yucca, jasmines, southern magnolias and agapanthus. But there is little reply and the thread soon dies. I have mentioned my visit to the Chelsea Flower Show in London last May, thinking that there might be a comment or question about THE premier flower show in the world, but not a word. I have posted photos of my garden and more recently of the plants in my sunroom ("A sunroom break from snow and cold". Jan. 4), hoping that it might encourage others to do the same. There was limited response and there were some photos from other people. I thought for sure the sunroom pics, the closest thing I have to a greenhouse, would evoke some reaction in the mid-winter gloom, and although there were some very nice comments, it didn't seem to inspire anyone else to post similar. I posted a response to an old thread ("New England Seasons - Traditional and Real") started in 2007 and recently revived. There were no responses. I didn't really start this thread as a complaint, nor did think it would change anything. It was just an observation, and possibly a way to see if other people saw the slowdown as well. Maybe the warmer weather will give this forum a boost.


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RE: Forum slowdown?

Ahhhh....well thanks for bringing me up to date, Bill. I'm afraid I have not been following the NE Forum much. When I have poked my head in, I see the same threads with no further posts on them for three days running, well, I want to save myself the frustration that you are expressing. Been there, done that. I only started to read a few of the top threads after seeing Jane's post about her NEForum anniversary.

At the moment, I am still trying to establish the core of my garden, with structure and core plants. I have not yet been adventurous to try to push my zone. I think at some point, I might like to try a camellia or a jasmine and I have had an interest in Southern Magnolias and remember discussing them with someone here from the South Shore who posted a wonderful photo of a cold hardy variety that I still envy. [g] But it was awhile ago. I think I did open a thread last week, that had some photos of camellias in it. If those were yours, they were Gorgeous!

I did see you mention the Chelsea Flower show earlier in this thread, and I actually was very interested and planning to pursue asking you more about it at another time. I am always conscious of posting too long a post, or getting off topic in a thread, so sometimes I don't comment on something that I want to comment on. As a matter of fact, I don't know if you noticed, but I mentioned three books on the 'FAQ about books' thread that Claire started, that were all about gardeners from England and thought you might notice my interest. As a matter of fact, the link I provided, about an interview with Beth Chatto was talking about the Chelsea Flower Show. I LOVED what you had to say about how even the children in England are interested in gardening. I wish my children were that interested in gardening. [g] I myself have never been able to make a trip to England and it is something that would be first on my list of trips I would like to take.

So, we do often miss the boat with each other for one reason or another. I'm sorry that you have received such little interest here, Bill, it is frustrating and discouraging. If activity does not pick up here, may I suggest you head over to the Cottage Gardening forum. I've just started posting there in the last few weeks and it is a very busy place with lots of interested responses to whatever you post.


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RE: Forum slowdown? 2

And ginny, thank you so much for saying that about non experts being important to the conversation too. I appreciate it. Always good to know. :-)


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I think I am guilty of posting less on GW partially because I'm spending too much time on facebook. I'm also not in gardening mode yet because it's too far off in my mind. It hurts to think about it when spring is so far off.


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Sienna, I am glad to know the reasons why people are not posting. Thanks. I do understand not wanting to be reminded that you can't get out and garden yet. I was busy with the holidays and then with returns and clean up from Christmas, so I've really not been available to post much until now either. I was going to put my usual garden planning on hold until late winter, until I realized that I wanted to order some roses and the catalog was starting to show 'sold outs' So now I am actively starting to try to figure out what I am doing next year.

I also added a lot more plants than usual in the fall, and I just can hardly wait to see whether they will all make it through the winter and how they will all look. It's hard to wait! :-)


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Guilty as charged. I've been fairly inactive or just lurking (reading others' posts but not replying). But I've seen the rose and fruit forums humming. It must be the hibernational winter, or maybe we're all in Costa Rica (oh if only...) But I intend to be asking questions and making comments by springtime, because I may need to grow a veil or mask of bushes and trees to block my 2013 VIEW OF 166 WINDMILLS OFF CUTTYHUNK, WITH BLINKING TOP LIGHTS. For all the gardeners in view of these, we might have to start a subforum within New England and Coastal. So much for ocean view property. Nothing stays the same.

Carol


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RE: Forum slowdown?

PM2,

You asked me what I would consider to be "on topic". The answer is is easy. Just take any of the general forums on trees, shrubs, perennials, annuals, vegetable gardening, bulbs, conifers, houseplants, hydrangeas, iris, tomatoes, roses, etc. and add the phrase "in New England" after them. While I can go to any of those other forums and post a question, the answer is not as meaningful to me coming from someone in let's say Nebraska over someone here. For instance, if I wanted to know which variety of cucumber grows best and tastes best in New England, then the experience of someone in this forum would go a lot farther than someone's advice who lives in a completely different part of the country. Yet, how often does the subject of vegetables come up here. I'm just not interested in threads about sales at a nursery that is too far from me to check out. The same thing goes for plant swaps and flower shows that are not local to me. There is also quite a few touchy-feely emails between members of this forum that are reminiscent of mind-sucking wall postings on Facebook (I just dug a hole in the dirt). Needless to say, I have no interest in these types of posts. I have no doubt that if the topics in this forum return to their roots (no pun intended) of gardening then the pace of the forum will improve dramatically.

Bill,

I for one really enjoyed your sunroom pics even though I didn't comment on them. I also enjoy pics of people's landscape (e.g. Claire). I encourage people to post as many pics as possible. People ARE looking even if it doesn't seem that way.


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Even if someone just writes "funny" or the briefest answer or observation, I like it. I enjoy just knowing that others are 'out there' even if they are almost lurking.

Are we anxious about things slowing down because we really would miss gardenweb or the ne forum if somehow it tanked?

Sometimes I don't respond to topics because I'm simply not very interested. Sometimes an answer would take more thought than I want to give it, or more time than I want to spend.

What I liked about Ken's questions on Perennials was the "carefree" way he just threw them out. This is not a cloaked comment about this forum being too serious. I'm trying to think of what makes me want to read or answer a post or write a post.
idabean


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RE: Forum slowdown?

It would be nice to see this forum continue of course. Maybe if we posted more responses to things we read, even a short comment, then at least the threads won't die so quickly. And so long as a thread is active, it might evolve to become more interesting to more people. Just my thoughts.


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Tree Oracle, Good idea...any of the garden forums followed by 'in New England'. That gives us a better understanding of what you are hoping to find posted here. So I take it you are in a part of the state that is not local to the Boston area? I don't know why, I thought you were from Maine. If you are in the Western part of the state, do you have any interest in swaps and sales going on in your area? Just curious. Tower Hill might be closer to you, than the Boston Flower Show. As a matter of fact, if you are not in my area, I would enjoy hearing more about what is going on in your area, since I don't get around the state, half as much as I would like.

I love to see photos of everyone's gardens. I never get tired of them. Sedum37 used to post photos when she would visit public gardens and I enjoyed that too. I like to post my own photos when I have a few good ones but I try to be careful not to post too many and bore everyone to death. I don't always have the most exotic specimen or a gorgeous landscape to offer. [g] Maybe there are a lot of people who either don't have a camera or don't know how to post photos.

Carol, I can't believe they are going to go ahead and put up all those windmills off the cape! I remember how horrified I was, when I first heard it. I imagine there is a reason they are putting them where they are putting them, but I always wondered why they couldn't find somewhere to put them that didn't destroy the beauty of the landscape. You have my sympathies.

Idabean, there used to be a lot more humor here at one time. It was fun. I think there is sometimes a 'caution' that people have to post. For instance, Ken's posts on the Perennials forum that you refer to. I have to hand it to Ken, he has a certain point of view and a certain style of delivery and I have benefited from it often, but I can't help but notice that sometimes he gets criticized a lot, so it is interesting that he still keeps posting. What I am saying is that sometimes we can get picky about the way someone posts to the point people hesitate to post.

Anyway, I'm glad some of us had a chance to talk about the slowdown on the forums. It would seem that some people are just busy, which is perfectly fine. It's early in the winter and as we get closer to spring, there could be an increase in activity. I think the forum can be whatever people want it to be. It can certainly represent many points of views and goals. It can accomodate each of the New England states, or it can come to a halt in favor of Facebook or other avenues if that's what people prefer. You get out of it what you put into it. Anyone can contribute in the way they want to or not.


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PM2,

Why would you think that I'm in Maine? When I post, it says that I'm in zone 6b in Massachusetts. I live in Marshfield. Just because I live in the Greater Boston area though does not mean that it's a short jaunt to some plant related activity in some other part of the Greater Boston area. I do a lot of commuting during the week. I really have no desire to do that during the weekend.

I am a strong Cape Wind supporter. The turbines are going to be small blips on the horizon. It's a small price to pay to reduce pollution and CO2 emissions that we presently get from the burning of fossil fuels. If CO2 is responsible for global warming then this situation will continue to get worse until the whole arctic has melted and the Cape is completely under water. Only then will people on the Cape wish they had not made such a big deal about a few blips on the horizon.


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PM2
I don't worry if someone gets prickly with me (usually because I am OT) I know Dee will laugh, and then post and tell us she did. But I recognize others may not be able to flip someone off as readily as I do. Please note, this is a gesture made in the privacy of my home and not subject to prosecution.

I resurrected "Dog in Elk" either here on or the Perennial forum. It got a few responses but didn't last long.

Dog in Elk? find and read if you dare.

So what's something funny we can start a thread about. Usually stories on ourselves are good for a start.


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Tree Oracle, I can see that your screen name designates MA as your state, but it had been awhile since I had seen you post and I had thought in the past, you were from Maine. Inexplicable! :-) Yes, I can see where if you have to get in the car and drive all week, you would love nothing better than to stay home all weekend.

I'm very happy to hear that you support Cape Wind. It is really great for the planet and global warming is a reality we all have to be willing to do what it takes. I understand that. You notice I didn't say I wish they didn't erect them. I just said I wish they had thought of somewhere else to put them. I didn't realize that they will be blips on the horizon. That doesn't sound too bad. The photos I saw of their placement made them appear to be so close to the coastline to be real eyesores. It may be that there were original plans to place them closer and that was changed?

Idabean, yes, I guess that is right. Someone who is not easily put off with 'prickliness' probably doesn't realize other people often are. I have found that it's not usually the direct confrontation that gets in my way, but the ins and outs of internet conversations that don't allow me the tools I use in face to face interaction... facial expression and body language. I still find that trips me up a lot and misunderstandings ensue. I've observed that I am not alone in that regard. :-)

The 'Dog in Elk' thread....I seem to remember that one. I will have to look for it. :-) I also remember a thread about someone who had an ongoing problem with a bird that took it into his head to peck at the window for months, keeping everyone awake at odd hours and the hysterical account of all the efforts to make the bird stop. Maybe that was another forum though. I usually have a very dry sense of humor. Either that or slapstick. [g] I can't think of a single funny thing that's happened to me of late. All of my funny stories are of when the kids were little, and they're not that funny unless you were there. :-) Some stories are not at all funny at the time, but much later down the road, they bring a smile to your face. The woman with the bird keeping her awake I'm sure was not laughing at the time. I think I will start a thread for people to post their funny stories, but I'll wager no one will post...lol.


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About the windmill farms: I'm going to start a new thread separate from this, subject "offshore wind farms?". There will be more than the Cape ones, I'm sorry to tell you. More on this in new thread.

Carol


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I'm definitely not from Maine. I'm from the great state of Alabama. For once, I am also proud of my current state after they voted Scott Brown into office.


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I haven't been on for years and was unpleasantly surprised when I returned to see the forum's demise. I'm from California and used to do active trading on the tropicals site. Whenever I had a question someone was sure to answer and quickly. I did a search to see what had happened and ended up on this thread. Still, I see it ended a year and a half ago, so I don't know whether any of you here are even still around.


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Could yvonneofhollywood be referring to the tropicals site and it got posted here by mistake? I read the whole darned thread to see why it got resurrected. Re: yvonne's question perhaps not intended for us NE Forum folks
STAND UP AND BE COUNTED
LURKERS, COME OUT OF THE SHADOWS, just for the head count~
Idabean (aka Marie) present!


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I'm here, sometimes reading, sometimes posting.


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Not a lurker but checking in anyway. This is my favorite, most relevant to my garden, forum and it has not been as active as in the past. I'm always glad to see new and longtime fellow New England gardeners here.


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here


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RE: Forum slowdown?

  • Posted by claire z6b Coastal MA (My Page) on
    Thu, Jul 21, 11 at 10:16

Still here on my home forum, always reading and often posting. I glanced quickly over the previous posts and noticed the mention of the Dog in Elk thread.

Since I rarely throw things away (never know when you might need a Dog in Elk thread), I have this saved and I can post it if anyone wants.

Claire


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  • Posted by triciae Zone 7 Coastal SE CT (My Page) on
    Thu, Jul 21, 11 at 12:06

I'm Tricia & still around the NE Gardening forum though mostly reading. I was an active poster for several years. Health issues have dominated my life since July '09.

I've also noticed the drop-off in forum posts/responses. I assumed the economy was having an affect along with Facebook. Gardening consumes discretionary income & many have tightened their belts these last 3-4 years.

Another thing I've noticed since I've been down so much & watching way more TV than normal...HGTV has introduced new shows dealing with outside spaces. The shows all seem to feature elaborate hardscaping with "gardening" playing a very minimal role. Actually, plants frequently are marginalized to along the back fence line to provide privacy with the remaining space devoted to large, expensive, & elaborate outdoor kitchens, water features, decking/patios, seating, & even outdoor theaters (hilarious in New England, IMO). I also saw on CNBC just last week a segment that architects are reporting a full 80% of their business today revolving around outdoor spaces. People who are unable to sell their remodeled houses & yet still have the home improvement bug are moving to the outside to create more "rooms". Any connection to HGTV, maybe? Anyway, trends seem to be moving away even further from gardening with available outdoor space being devoted to creating more "rooms" to be used as an extension of indoor spaces. Plants are being presented on these shows as more of a liability than an asset. I've even wondered if our elaborate gardens would be a detriment should we ever wish to sell? Thankfully, that's not on our radar for the present. Nevertheless, I believe younger audiences' desires are being influenced by these shows.

On a local note, I've noticed that the huge potted floral displays that used to be common along my part of coastal NE (Mystic) have all but disappeared. We are friends with owners of an upscale garden center in coastal RI. They've been in business at the same location for 20+ years & are struggling to keep the doors open. It's not quality, the husband is a true artist with plants. Home & Garden magazine recently finished shooting a feature article for publication next April at their garden center. So, something has changed within the population.

Just my two cents. I'm one who hopes to keep this forum alive. It's difficult for me to type these days but I'll try to make more posts. I'm no longer able to physically garden but I'm outside giving moral support to DH & still in charge of design. I hope that's enough to still qualify me as a NE gardener?

/tricia


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RE: Forum slowdown?

Hi Tricia, nice to hear from you. I'm sorry to hear about your medical problems - hope these are resolved soon!

I think this forum is STILL one of the best garden discussion venues. Facebook has some garden groups, but no actual discussions that I can find; I joined several of these groups and was disappointed at the lack of content.

The problem with HGTV, IMHO, is that the people in charge of programming are much more interested in their TV careers than in gardening. HGTV is just a stop on the way to a reality tv job at some other station, or maybe a role in a soap opera. So, they don't put much effort or funds into getting real garden content. They COULD enlist some of our serious contemporary garden designers, but they're probably unaware that such a group exists!

Anyway, this forum seems to me to be alive and somewhat well. It's always slow when members are outside actually gardening, instead of whiling away the hours at their computers.


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RE: Forum slowdown?

I know a few people are missing.....surely no one is outdoors gardening? Maybe watering......?
Marie


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Since the original poster has not posted again, I am also under the impression she thought she was in the Tropical forum....lol.

I'm still visiting and reading and sometimes posting and still gardening. Not nearly as much as I used to for various reasons.

Sorry to hear about your health issues, triciae and hope they resolve for you soon. Nice that your husband is keeping up with the garden and smart of you to retain the design rights. (g)

Interesting thoughts on the possible reasons for a slow down. I hadn't thought of the economy. I have stopped watching HGTV quite awhile ago. Their lack of reasonable gardening content and the emphasis on 'over the top' outdoor spaces was out of step with the gardening I do. I don't even watch the Victory Garden any more. They seem to always be on the West Coast these days and touring some public garden with not enough focus on the average home gardener.


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RE: Forum slowdown? 2

I was referring to yvonneofhollywood's post, not the OP.


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Hello Idabean and everyone,

I am still here, reading and occationally posting. I think the New England Forum is the best that is available. I think we are pretty active. There always seem to be something to read and I am getting to know the regular posters. I learn so much from this forum and have met some really nice people. I love when people post pictures of their blooms, especially when they id what they are posting. It has helped me greatly id some of th eplants in my own yard and to get an idea of what I would like to get for my yard.

Thanks to all posters and readers for making this a GREAT forum

Blake


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RE: Forum slowdown?

  • Posted by mayalena 6 - MetroWest Boston (My Page) on
    Sat, Jul 23, 11 at 13:53

Still here, still reading, not posting much because...I feel more like a lurker than a member. Also, my questions are pretty much the same as always.... What should I plant in my black hole of doom and destruction? I do plan to post photos to the "what's blooming" thread, but I need to download 10,000 other photos first....
ML


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RE: Forum slowdown?

Come on, Mayalena. Tell us on a new thread about that black hole of doom and destruction. We need a garden challenge indoors in the a/c or at least a fan. We all have those black holes in our gardens....


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RE: Forum slowdown?

I visit this forum several times a week, and occasionally post sosmething. My interests don't seem to be shared by most, but this is the NE Gardening forum and I am in NE so I try. Some have suggested that, because of some of the plants I grow, my comments and posts might not belong here, but in other specialized forums. But I garden in NE and if certain things grow here then I felt that they could be discussed here but I don't think most others agree . So I tend to read what I find interesting and refrain from posting too much. I sometimes try to offer help or answers to others if I can.


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