Any Other Topics: Facebook
Started by: Caroline Seymour
A taster of wthe worldwide community on Facebook.Go to latest contribution by Caroline Seymour, 07 July 2015, 13:40. Go to bottom of this page.
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I recently became aware of two very active AGS groups on Facebook. People from around the world contribute on a regular basis. Here are some samples: Campanula posted by Milena Parteli from Slovenia, Pulsatilla posted by Andrey Dedov from Russia, and my favourite, a wood carpeted pink with Erythronium japonicum posted by Yuukou Saitou from Japan.
If you are concerned, as I was, about advertising, I can confirm that I am not conscious of any in connection with these groups. You have to register on Facebook in order to see the posts, but you need do no more. The two pages I mention are 'Alpine Garden Society (East Lancs Group)' and 'Hampshire Alpine Garden Society'. You will need to request to join the group and then you will receive notification in your email of each post. These can all be deleted, just following one into Facebook to see what is happening.
Do give it a try.
Those are wonderful pictures Caroline! We haven't been on Facebook very much because time seems to be taken up with this and the SRGC websites which hopefully are viewed by quite a few alpine enthusiasts, but there is obviously a lot more out there, and probably more communication between different enthusiasts. Certainly looks well worth viewing but presumably Facebook is not able to share more practical experiences of growing alpines so easily? Really great to see them in the wild like that and even more exciting sometimes when that rare pulsatilla (whichever species one has grown) flowers in the garden for the first time. I eagerly anticipate flowers on several less common species that we now have. Will maybe link in with Facebook more this year.
I feel a bit like Tim. I am registered on Facebook but am very inactive and prefer other means of communication. But thats a fantastic pulsatiilla! Does anyone know what it is?
Caroline - have just had a closer look at the Hampshire Facebook site. Lots of interesting plants, places and people! Will keep looking in...
I'm so glad you have had a look. You do a great job on the AGS discussion, Tim. I was just looking for ways to encourage more AGS members to join in, since we already have an active following from individuals around the globe. I completely stunned a group of younger relatives at the weekend by enthusing at how exciting Facebook can be when they thought it was all rather boring. I have not yet got to grips with Twitter, but I gather Paddy Hinton (Hants Gp chair) has more than 1000 followers!
Hi Caroline! I think the biggest problem I have with the Internet is the ridiculous number of different ways people communicate with one another, but on other hand how this can also be so exciting and interesting. I must admit I'd hoped for more on the AGS site - maybe it will come - because the whole point of the Internet is interaction, and the whole point of interaction learning about what other people do and benefiting from it. We can have our heads a bit in the clouds here sometimes, not really acknowledging one another. Facebook does look really stimulating, and it's fascinating to see what excitement others get from plants in so many different ways.
John, I believe it is Pulsatilla multifida. At least, that's the title on Andrey's album, but I cannot be sure as there is enormous variation in the album. A second album titled P. Turczaninovii has rather similar plants.
To clarify, those two pics are from the P. Multifida album. The one below is from the other and not showing the colour variations.
Extraordinary and exciting pictures Caroline. Brilliant to see them reproduced on the AGS website. It confirms everything you say. What a meadow of pulsatilla! No wonder Susann Nillson and Olga Bondareva are so captivated by these plants in the wild - they take the breath away!
Just had another look at the Hampshire Facebook Group site (Gillian and I share ours - seems stupid to set up two). Really struck by the good display of plants at the Hants AGS meeting with Kevin Hughes. Must work on this in Kent. I'm also trying to imagine the combination of John Massey and Roy Lancaster - an incredible double act! Very interesting to see the images and comments on the site.
So why haven't you joined, Tim? :)
Ah, Caroline - well I have! I just use Facebook under my wife's name because I don't see the point of both of us talking about the plants we grow and places we visit separately... and I already write at length under my own name here and on the SRGC Forum. (We haven't worked out how to change the title of the page so that it is under both of our names, otherwise we would have done this).
Sorry, Tim. I know you contribute extensively and I admire you for your commitment. By 'joined' I meant that I was surprised that you were not following the East Lancs and Hampshire AGS pages. Perhaps you have other pages that suit your plant profile better?
I'm afraid I don't look in on this discussion area all that often, so my responses are rather delayed.
You are right Carolyn - I don't look at the East Lancs and Hampshire pages as much as I should! It's good when I do to see the wide interactions between gardeners in many different places (and especially plants in natural habitats). I haven't properly got used to all these different social media and had the naive assumption a while ago that AGS members might talk to each other more on the AGS website! (especially about the practice of growing and propagating plants). I also like seeing things written about in greater depth, as in the Journal and sometimes here, and in seeing projects develop. (I think the Internet has come on us so quickly that it seems to have changed the world overnight, which is a little disconcerting. Gardening often goes on at a slower pace - fortunately and realistically). Perhaps we need a Facebook correspondent picking out occasional highlights and sharing them here? Could be interesting! (How many people actually read this? I've no idea).
Caroline - there is a more serious point here, which Matt Mattus (the President of the North American Rock Garden Society has made in the latest Quarterly), and that is how much gardeners now use the Internet for all their information about plants? And as a result how much we (gardeners) will all contribute to specialist societies like the AGS in the future? There are some tremendous articles in the latest NARGS Quarterly by people such as John Mitchell from Edinburgh BG and Ger van de Beuken and Alan Oatway, and for me these show the true value of the alpine societies - they are sharing experiences - and yet(?) there are not so many new gardeners coming into the societies and getting really enthused about alpines (or at least not in the same way as in the past). Why is this? This is pretty much why I have made such an effort on the AGS website - as well as for our own benefit of trying to sell plants. If we assume that the Internet is with us to stay then this website becomes pretty important and so too the way members use it.
(In fact it is obvious that the AGS website is an ongoing repository of information and photographs, which is an Encyclopeadic function of the Internet - but there is a lot of competition elsewhere too. The point is: how much is it a Society attractive to new gardeners too? [This should probably be put under the 'members discussion' but I think it is relevant here as well]).
A very good blog entry from Matt Mattus which Margaret Young has mentioned on the SRGC Forum - captures the spirit of the alpine/rock garden societies/clubs so well.
Having partly taken over my wife's Facebook page (I sort of write there under her pseudonym! - I'm not sure what she thinks of that?! but we do work together) I am beginning to realise what an amazing 'device' it is - it beats Twitter and Linkedin etc., etc., hands down for sharing a proper appreciation of what others do. A good example - arising from a Comment that Paddy Parmee made on a photograph by Jeanie Lazenby on the Isle of Skye - the photograph is beautiful and her other photographs of mountain scenery just take you there, some wonderfully simple and perfectly composed. We all love alpines but is it these places they come from that have made them and we should all love the mountains too and see more of this artistic appreciation of them in the Journal and portrayed on the website here. The way that Facebook in particular brings images of plants and places from all over the world - and the way these do open your eyes to the vision of others - is remarkable and must change a Society such as the AGS in the future (?) if it really wants to benefit from this.
Tim, I am delighted to see you joining in on Facebook. I agree that such interaction is desirable for the AGS site, but just as small businesses cannot compete with the advertising power of the large ones, our only option is to use the established system. I am astonished at the range of people around the world that have discovered Hampshire and East Lancs Facebook pages and hope, by using every opportunity to mention AGS shows/Journal/seed exchange/tours, that we might glean one or two more members - if only to receive the Journal. Hampshire facebook page has gathered 210 followers since mid-December; Bulborum has over 5000 members, so must have been present for much longer. It is definitely the way to go.