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Plant and Tree Guild Database

 
master pollinator
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If I brush up on my Latin and my Dutch, that should be very useful! 

 
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¡¡¡¡Gosh do you read latin and dutch!! the dutch are very good at english i am supr¡sed they have not writen it in two languages except that writing is so time consuming. rose, ¿Do you Like the Spanish upside down exclamtion marks?
 
Tyler Ludens
master pollinator
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I've learned a little bit of botanical Latin over the years of being interested in plants, and I can decipher a few Dutch words.    Just enough to make sense of that database somewhat! 
 
                            
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This topic is fascinating and I really hope the project takes off.

I'm a developing permaculturalist farming/growing on 11.3 acres of land near my home.  Planning to do my first permaculture design course next month. In an earlier (part of my) life I did research into Mathematical Logic and taught in a computer science department for many years and I've been following progress on the Semantic Web for a long time. Only last night I installed a Semantic Media Wiki (SMW) on the servers I'm using for my websites, to get to grips with the technology and see if I can understand the issues and potential applications. I'm impressed, I must say, and my hunch is that this is the right way to go primarily because of the social and collaborative opportunities it presents and because of the great flexibility of the Semantic Web approach. I've worked with relational database (RDB) theory and technology and RDB management systems (RDBMS)s and with Drupal and Wordpress in the past so I've some experience, if not a great deal of wisdom, in this area. There isn't an exact match within a SMW installation to a relational database (and the SMW people are aware of this and have their reasons) but there is a great match to other kinds of database (c.f. SPARQL and RDF stores, http://semantic-mediawiki.org/wiki/Help:Using_SPARQL_and_RDF_stores ).  One key point is that the structure of the database naturally evolves over time (as Berners-Lee anticipated many years ago when he proposed the Semantic Web) while this is much harder to accommodate in traditional RDMBSs.  The structure is a collaborative effort (and can be edited wiki-style!) and doesn't require a developer to know in advance what works best.  It also allows internationalisation so that permaculturalists speaking different languages (learning and using other languages is one of my favourite hobbies ) can still communicate effectively. And I expect local dialects to develop and mirror the local climate and ecologies; using Semantic Web technology makes this all possible.

One thing I've observed is that old technologies seem better when I have lots experience of them yet new technologies are very seductive for people like me who mostly absorb positive reviews and the temptation to commit early to a particular technology, be it MySQL, Wordpress, Drupal or SMW, is very strong.  And it does take someone to take an initiative even when the "best" approach isn't clear; it sounds as if Lawrence is doing this; I'm not clear if an alternative/complementary system is going to be developed out of this topic?

I'm very keen to learn more about local guilds and I'd be happy to contribute (in a relatively small way because of my other commitments) to this project if that turns out to be sensible. Whatever we do with our local permaculture project (and we want to learn, understand and share a lot from it), it seems to make a lot of sense to make it easy to collaborate with existing projects rather than re-inventing the wheel ourselves.
 
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Location: NC Piedmont and SW Virginia
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Wow, I got so excited while reading this post... I want to design guilds for all sorts of fruit/nut trees I've planted, need help with companion plants... but I don't read Dutch Has there been any progress on an English version? I'd contribute but I'm an old school Assembler programmer, probably not much help....
 
Posts: 114
Location: Tyler Texas
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A data base or wiki would just not be a hard thing to do. Its the data that needs to be gathered and there would be a lot of submitted info that might not be right. Plant common names could could be checked from an existing plant data base so that new entries would be more correct and a thumbs up and thumbs down rating system might help refine the data. Perhaps the biggest question is how do you know something is a guild vs a random assembly of plants and trees that looks healthy? Perhaps the companion planting model would be the best way to approach this?
 
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Location: Lemon Grove, CA
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do you guys know about this project? http://www.indiegogo.com/OpenPermaculture They seem to be doing what you want to do. Maybe you can combine efforts.
 
pollinator
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Location: La Palma (Canary island) Zone 11
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Andru is building this in a wiki where everybody can participate, and it will belong to all:

https://permies.com/t/16525/permaculture/open-encyclopedia-plant-information-interactions

The main aim is about guilds...
Sure, everybody comes to the same difficulties for applying the rules of plant interactions,
and only the 3 sisters is very well known, and the companion planting does not give ready-made guilds.

So I hope a good cooperation will happen between people who were brainstorming on their own!
 
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Abe Connally wrote:is there a comprehensive plant/tree guild database online?

If not (I haven't been able to find one), I am going to start one, and make it like a wiki.  It would be nice to be able to input tons of stuff and get everyone to share their experiences, species, and combinations.

What do folks think about this?

I have a ton of hosting space and the software, so it won't be hard to get up and running, as long as folks think it would be good to have.  I personally would love it!




I have been looking to create this myself as I haven't found anything I like. I am a computer programmer and I have a Masters Certificate in Sustainable Food Systems and Permaculture Design. I personally think a wiki is a terrible idea as it would be harder to navigate. If this was backed by and actual database of pure information about plants, animal and insects then the community can great and share guilds based on the non-editable scientific data stored (corrections could be submitted).

My main question would be to the community at large is would everyone support a kickstarter of this? I would would love for this to be my gift to the world but since our society is founded on money I would need a big enough kickstarter to quit my job and do this as my full time work. I would also make the process community driven meaning there would be design meetings with all who support at kickstarter.

I did see this [http://practicalplants.org/wiki/Practical_Plants] after my initial post. That is super cool but proper permaculture guilds can include insects and animals as well I would like to build a more complete database and website.

Also if I design all this work at a database level that means you can put whatever flavor UI on top of it you want. Meaning a website, a phoneapp, a desktop application etc, you are not just bound by a simple wiki.
 
Xisca Nicolas
pollinator
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Andre Davis wrote:I did see this [http://practicalplants.org/wiki/Practical_Plants] after my initial post. That is super cool but proper permaculture guilds can include insects and animals as well I would like to build a more complete database and website.

Also if I design all this work at a database level that means you can put whatever flavor UI on top of it you want. Meaning a website, a phoneapp, a desktop application etc, you are not just bound by a simple wiki.



Hi andre. I should have put the direct link to them: http://practicalplants.org
I gave some feedback to practical plants a few days ago, because they asked for it. They want more help, they want people to take it as their own. I think they do not want to be leaders but part of the team.

Do not do your ONLY because you found a "but..." in their idea!
This would just not be very permacultural...
Propose to them to work with them, I am sure that they just want this: not to be the only ones to make it live.
Sure, their name includes "plants".
and then what... no problem!
Because honestly, I did not have your idea either but understand it and love it readily!
Let's not multiply project but associate!
And then nobody needs to make it his full time job.
 
pollinator
Posts: 2409
Location: Massachusetts, Zone:6/7, AHS:4, Rainfall:48in even Soil:SandyLoam pH6 Flat
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There is really only 10 families so it will be pretty easy to generalize which families dislike which families.
Everything pretty much likes legumes, and onions and dill. other than blackberry nothing in the rose family likes the walnut family
 
Posts: 44
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This is not a database but a pdf Companion Planting Chart (right click THIS and click save as, or just open in browser)
 
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Location: Zone 3a - 4b
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You can try this site here. It is a paid service but for individuals it is an affordable $20 per year and probably worth it if you are just planning on making one design for your own property.

http://permacultureplantdata.com/

It's Daniel Halsey's site from http://www.southwoodscenter.com/
 
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Hi all I'm new here but I've just read through this thread and would like to help (I was actually going to develop something smaller scale as a hobby project anyway).

What I can offer:
- programming skills: I work as a programmer / database researcher
- network expertise: I work for a company that develops a "graph database" (graph=network in computer science lingo), I would love to model this data as a network and then do (as others have suggested) a type of "match making" service for companion planting etc., e.g., "if you plant this, also plant this" or "if your oil is low in this mineral plant this" or "if you soil is rich in this mineral these plants will benefit most", etc.

One caveat, anything software I develop remains open source and free (preferably residing on www.github.com).

What I would love to get my hands on:
- companion planting etc. datasets, be they comma separated files, spread sheets, databases, whatever... something in computer readable format so I can load it into a database tool to make asking these complex questions very easy

Does anyone know where I can download any datasets to get started?

Cheers!
Alex
 
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Hello, I just arrived here searching for already existing plants/guilds db projects.
I'm software engineer with web experience. I would like to contribute and participate to an interesting project as I believe it is more efficient and FUN than starting over from scratch on my own.
Let me know if I can be of any help.

Cheers
 
Uh oh, we're definitely being carded. Here, show him this tiny ad:
dry stack retaining wall
https://permies.com/t/85178/dry-stack-retaining-wall
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