Talk:Botanical garden

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Good article Botanical garden has been listed as one of the Natural sciences good articles under the good article criteria. If you can improve it further, please do so. If it no longer meets these criteria, you can reassess it.
July 8, 2010 Good article nominee Listed
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Herbarium and library requirement[edit]

I'd like to see a source for the claim that herbarium and library is a requirement, I've never seen that anywhere. Stan 12:07, 11 October 2005 (UTC)

Where's the botanical garden that you're thinking of, without a library and a germ plasm (usually dried) collection? Not every collection of plants prettily disposed and labelled is a botanical garden. --Wetman 12:18, 11 October 2005 (UTC)
My belief has always been that a labelled and organized collection of living plants is sufficient to define something as a "botanical garden", but I can't point to a formal definition that says yea or nay. The requirement for a library seems a little arbitrary - does it have to be publicly accessible? Is there a size requirement? If not, would a shelf of books in the director's office qualify? If a labelled collection of plants is not a botanical garden, then how does one distinguish it from a garden that simply exists for esthetic purposes? This is why we're supposed to have an authority to cite, instead of imagining a definition based on our general knowledge. Stan 22:23, 11 October 2005 (UTC)
But I asked, "Where's the botanical garden that you're thinking of, without a library and a germ plasm (usually dried) collection?"—to which there is no response: compare Heywood et al., ed., International Directory of Botanical Gardens (5th ed. 1990). I'm not going on "my belief": Houghton Mifflin's Dictionary defines "botanical garden: "A place where a wide variety of plants are cultivated for scientific, educational, and ornamental purposes, often including a library, a herbarium, and greenhouses; an arboretum." "Often including a library" is a sop to any possible bookless self-described "botanical garden", of which we have no example. "Would a shelf of books in the director's office qualify?" No: I have more than a shelf-full myself. Is "open to the public" a prerequisite? Then Chelsea Physic Garden is not a botanical garden. "Botanical gardens perform diversified functions, e.g., the collection and cultivation of plants from all parts of the world, experimentation in plant breeding and hybridization, the maintenance of botanical libraries and herbariums, and the administration of educational programs for adults and children." By selective choices, one might say any nature center with a children's program is a "botanical garden". Would that help the Wikipedia reader asking "What is a botanical garden"? Unthinking populism endorses so many inflated self-identifications that ideas just collapse in the general cultural rubble. I have added "professionally-staffed" to the description, another generally recognized requirement. --Wetman 09:52, 12 October 2005 (UTC)
So a specific example I'm familiar with (and which has supplied many WP's images) is the The Gardens at the Las Vegas Springs Preserve. I don't think they have a library (haven't asked), not sure about herbarium, but they certainly experiment, educate, and ornament. The dictionary definition puts a lot of caveats in, because some place famous like the San Francisco Botanical Garden transfers its herbarium to SFSU for convenience or financial reasons, it seems unreasonable to insist that it is no longer a true botanical garden. Stan 14:07, 12 October 2005 (UTC)

The Cambridge University Botanic Garden has no library or herbarium. Gdr 22:24, 12 October 2005 (UTC)

The suggestion that the Cambridge University Botanic Garden has no library is a quibble. The library there is for staff use only, and the libraries of the University supplement it with what must be, taken together, one of the prime historical botanical libraries of Europe. A "botanical garden" without a library is like a "college" without a library. Is a Petting zoo a zoological society? In the US particularly, gardens with seasonal themes emphasizing "hands-on" plant experiences for schoolchildren together with attractive pleasure gardens with eco-themes and hobby programs, such as Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park recently added to the external links, demonstrate the recently devalued and inflated usage of "botanic garden" in the US. This point needs to be briefly addressed, though not by me, obviously. --Wetman 10:21, 13 October 2005 (UTC)
This is looking to me like a question of "broad" vs "narrow" definition - from the dictionary definitions you can see that we're not the first to struggle with this. College in fact is a perfect illustration of the difficulties in trying to adopt a narrow definition based on specific criteria; the whole school accreditation concept comes from a desire to better define what is and is not an inflated concept of a college (there are some without libraries, for instance). In the absence of formal "accreditation" for botanical gardens, we're not really in a strong position to be passing judgement on what is and is not. Stan 14:03, 13 October 2005 (UTC)

I am under the impression that the Chelsea Physic Garden is (now?) open to the public, as they wouldn't state admission prices otherwise: [[1]]. Am I right there? It might therefore not be appropriate as an example of a closed botanic garden anyway, no matter how you define it. --JustusvV 01:29, 22 November 2006 (UTC)

There has long been discussion of what makes a botanic garden at Botanic Gardens Conservation International. BGCI have made attempts to define them, first in 1989 when the organisation was set up as an IUCN Secretariat, and later refined in the International Agenda for Botanic Gardens in Conservation.

deleted external links[edit]

I deleted the external links section as most of these botanical gardens have their own wikipedia-page an are listed in List_of_botanical_gardens ==External links==

Botanic or Botanical?[edit]

Why the variation in names (nicely illustrated by the list of links above)? Is there any real difference between the two or is it just one of those quirks of language? Lisiate 23:52, 19 June 2006 (UTC)

The earlier term (by two years, 1656 vs. 1658, according to the OED) is botanic, but it notes that it has been "mostly superseded by botanical", except in older institutions such as the Royal Botanic Society. There is no meaningful difference between the two except that botanic used to be used as a noun to describe a botanist. Ziggurat 21:24, 20 June 2006 (UTC)

Scientific Purposes[edit]

Why does this article limit botanical gardens to those for scientific purposes? "Botanical gardens grow a wide variety of plants primarily categorized and documented for scientific purposes." There are plenty of botanical gardens that are purely for aesthetic purposes. Are they listed and defined under some other name? Filoli, the Japanese Friendship Garden in San Jose, many others on the California list are not for scientific purposes, yet are listed under Botanical Gardens of the United States. If BG are only scientific, the list must be reduced to probaby about 1/4 of what it is. Some gardens with scientific missions have them secondarily to their primary missions of aesthetic appeal, also. A botanical garden is simply a zoo for plants, and like zoos, they have various missions, some of them are primarily educational, some are research institutes, some are beautiful exhibitions of plants. And some are not well documented at all, much less for scientific purposes. KP Botany 19:33, 3 October 2006 (UTC)

I've tried to broaden the discussion and definition, since the list of botanical gardens clearly doesn't restrict itself to 'scientific' botanical gardens. As of 11 Nov 2009, more is needed on all the activities of botanical gardens, scientific and otherwise. Peter coxhead (talk) 20:04, 11 November 2009 (UTC)

Modern means ... scientific[edit]

Does it really?[2] Please discuss the edit, which appeared to have been made in good faith, rather than reverting. --KP Botany (talk) 07:27, 12 January 2009 (UTC)

I reverted the statement (The first modern botanical gardens were founded in Tenochitlan) because it was inaccurate on several fronts, not for any other reason. Likely it was added in good faith (tho' the only other edit from this ip, made some 20mins later, clearly was not), but at best the statement misrepresents current understanding of the form and function of the gardens like the one(s) at Tenochtitlan and other sites in the Aztec realm.
Presumably by "botanical garden" this article has some specific definition in mind, not just any miscellaneous collection of plants grown at some locale. It would be reasonable to regard the definition by BGCI given in the article as an authorative version. If so, it would be a significant stretch to regard the purpose and function of these Aztec gardens as meeting those criteria. Even more so if the qualifier "modern" is used.
Aztec gardens such as those in Tenochtitlan proper and elsewhere (like the ones at Itzapalapa famously noted by Cortes) had many functions, but there's little to suggest these included documentation and research purposes. Instead, we have gardens attached to royal residences, for ostentation (laws reportedly dictated only certain sectors of the nobility could maintain them), recreation, pleasure, ritual, ceremony, hunting grounds, etc. It is true that there has been occasional debate in the literature about whether or not these Aztec gardens can validly be described as "botanical" in nature; however to the best of my knowledge the balance of scholarship prefers not to do this, and instead treats them not as "botanical gardens" per se but on their "own terms" (see for eg this paper).
Also, among the various gardens of a similar nature known for the Aztec region (or Mesoamerica for that matter), the one(s) in Tenochtitlan itself are not the earliest examples of this type. There were very many throughout the region, and sites such as Huaxtepec and Tetzcoco preceded the ones in Tenochtitlan described by the conquistadors by a century or more.
A third point- if "botanical gardens" is to be interpreted here in its broadest possible (and therefore somewhat debased sense, see older comments from others on this talkpage above), then it is quite unlikely that in a global context the Aztec ones would be definitively the earliest such. However as noted it doesn't seem to make much sense to interpret the meaning of this article so broadly.
In summary: in the sense of the definitions of the term made in this article, the Aztec ones are not a good fit, and they are not commonly desribed as such in the literature- they are not "modern botanical gardens". Neither are the ones in Tenochtitlan the earliest examples of gardens of a similar type and purpose to be found in the Mesoamerican region. --cjllw ʘ TALK 05:52, 13 January 2009 (UTC)
Well, we're discussing "scientific" botanical gardens, and that's what you offer? There's no good way to say this, cjllw, but your arguments are nothing. I can't even find where to hold on to them. Why don't you define, with references, exactly what you mean by a botanical garden, then maybe I can figure out where you are coming from. The article you link to simply seems to be saying botanical gardens weren't part of Mesoamerican culture. This also seems to be way off track of anything. I will send for it and read it in its entirety, but, really, you've offered nothing but Euro-centricity in its extremest. --KP Botany (talk) 05:14, 17 January 2009 (UTC)
In terms of the literature on the history of botanic gardens, sources I've read all see the progression being from medieval European physic gardens to 'scientific' botanical gardens. The article reflected this view before my edits, and still does. This doesn't mean that there weren't the equivalent of physic gardens - gardens whose main purpose was to gather and study plants for medicinal purposes - in other cultures. There clearly were, and it would be good to have an article on this. However, they weren't the predecessors of the modern botanic garden.
I've now discovered a couple of relevant references which suggest a possible influence of Mesoamerican gardens on the history of botanical gardens, so I've added a short paragraph on this. I can't discover any source which documents a direct influence between the conquistadores' knowledge and the creation of the North Italian gardens in the second half of the 16th century. If there is any evidence, then of course this should be added. In terms of maintaining a NPOV, the article has to start from the definition of a botanical garden out there in the sources, and all those I've seen are unanimous in pin-pointing Pisa/Padua as the pivotal point between physic gardens (which the Mesoamerican ones could certainly be called) and botanical gardens. I agree that there needs to be a fuller article on physic gardens/medicinal gardens. Peter coxhead (talk) 11:28, 14 November 2009 (UTC)

Call for the definitions of botanic garden and botanical garden[edit]

To my knowledge, one is scientific and another not. Which is which???--222.64.219.122 (talk) 01:35, 6 May 2009 (UTC)

Botanists please clarify the concepts of Botanical garden and Botanic garden--222.64.219.122 (talk) 01:49, 6 May 2009 (UTC)

I believe that they are synonyms, and have edited the article to say this. See also the section below headed "Rewrite/re-structure". Peter coxhead (talk) 20:04, 11 November 2009 (UTC)

Rewrite/re-structure[edit]

This appears to be quite an important page, since it's linked to by many separate articles on botanic(al) gardens. I think that the previous version was rather weak in relation to the importance of the topic. I've made an attempt to rewrite/re-structure it.

  • I agree that "botanic" and "botanical" are synonyms in the context of gardens. Because the oldest such gardens in most English-speaking countries appear to use the term "botanic", this perhaps conveys more prestige and more sense of being scientific, but this isn't an important distinction.
  • It's clear to me that it's not possible to legislate on what is or isn't a botanical garden. On the other hand, the BGCI represents some 1,800 botanic gardens in almost 150 countries, so its agreed definition should have some force.
  • I've suggested subsections to the section "Activities" based on the four given in the BGCI accepted definition. Is this sensible?

Peter coxhead (talk) 20:04, 11 November 2009 (UTC)

I've gone through all the articles linking to botanic garden and changed to use botanical garden. I have tried to use judgment whether to pipe to botanic garden. In particular Australian and Scottish seem more to prefer botanic, and articles on a specific garden so-named I have tried to give preference to botanic. Hope this makes sense, but it cuts down the double redirect problem. Si Trew (talk) 12:41, 16 November 2009 (UTC)

Copied from Talk:Botanic garden[edit]

Disambiguation page[edit]

Given that 'botanic garden' and 'botanical garden' (and indeed the same phrases with 'gardens') are synonyms, I think it's very odd to have one title as a disambiguation page and one as a topic page.
Proposal:

  • Searching for 'botanic garden' and 'botanical garden' should both lead to the topic page.
  • The topic page should have a standard top link to the disambiguation page, which should have '(disambiguation)' in the title as normal.

Peter coxhead (talk) 07:52, 16 November 2009 (UTC)

Support. All sounds reasonable to me. To be concrete,I would suggest:
  • 'Botanic garden' is the main topic title, as the shorter of the two.
  • It should have a hatnote to the dab page, Botanic garden (disambiguation)
  • 'Botanical garden' should be a redirect to this page.
  • I would say it is unnecessary to have Botanical garden (disambiguation) redirect to this.
Best wishes Si Trew (talk) 08:19, 16 November 2009 (UTC)
Support - largely as per Si Trew.
I have no firm opinion about which should be THE main page, and will support the "best" arguement. (Note, "Best" is deliberately undefined at this stage.)
At the moment, and in the absence of any other suggestion, "best" = "shortest" seems good ... (Note that I am not firmly wed to this pov and am open to persuasion, perhaps even bribery.)
So, to dot the "i"s and cross the "t"s, if we agree Botanic garden is to be the main page:
Cheers, Pdfpdf (talk) 09:30, 16 November 2009 (UTC)
Thanks for your quick responses. I'm making the changes at present. For now, I've left 'Botanical garden' as the main topic title, rather than 'Botanic garden'. I have to say that my personal preference is for the latter, but:
  • The Wiktionary entry, and most of the other dictionaries I've looked at, refer 'botanic garden' to 'botanical garden', which kind of establishes the latter as the 'prime' term.
  • 'Botanical' does seem to be the more modern usage, in that if you look at recently created gardens, this is the word normally used rather than 'botanic'.
But like you I don't have a strong opinion about this. I think it's ok as it is. (Although you could say it's illogical to have the main topic as 'BotanicAL garden' and the disambiguation page as 'Botanic garden (disambiguation)'.) Peter coxhead (talk) 11:20, 16 November 2009 (UTC)
Another issue is that there are many more links from other articles to 'botanical garden' than to 'botanic garden'. This seems a good reason to keep things as they are. Peter coxhead (talk) 11:31, 16 November 2009 (UTC)
I'm quite happy with "botanical garden" as main, given the arguments above. Si Trew (talk) 11:41, 16 November 2009 (UTC)
I've gone through all the articles linking to botanic garden and changed to use botanical garden. I have tried to use judgment whether to pipe to botanic garden. In particular Australian and Scottish seem more to prefer botanic, and articles on a specific garden so-named I have tried to give preference to botanic. Hope this makes sense, but it cuts down the double redirect problem. Si Trew (talk) 12:41, 16 November 2009 (UTC)
So, to be unambiguous, we have agreed:
Yes? On that basis, I'll "move" the "wrong" ones, and create the red ones. OK? Pdfpdf (talk) 12:59, 16 November 2009 (UTC)
Agreed. I'll work a bit more on relinking articles to Botanical garden, but leave the DABs to you. Note as redirects I think they should not, themselves, be categorised as DABs. Si Trew (talk) 13:06, 16 November 2009 (UTC)
Agreed. Pdfpdf (talk) 13:12, 16 November 2009 (UTC)
Done. Pdfpdf (talk) 13:33, 16 November 2009 (UTC)
Post Script: Thank you gentlemen. I wish everything on wikipedia could be resolved that amicably! Pdfpdf (talk) 13:37, 16 November 2009 (UTC)
Um, it's early days yet – objections and reversions are still possible. :-) But it's good to see this sorted out; thanks for your assistance to a relative newcomer. Peter coxhead (talk) 16:05, 16 November 2009 (UTC)
Articles using [[[Botanic Garden]] relinked. Si Trew (talk) 16:52, 16 November 2009 (UTC)
You may wish to review WP:NOTBROKEN. Hesperian 01:15, 17 November 2009 (UTC)
Duly done. But many were broken, either because the title referred to a "botanic garden" and the text linked to "botanical garden", or vice versa, or other things like that. So, frequently, the user ended up at the DAB page as was instead of at this article. Thus it made sense, as part of the process of reducing the DABs to DABs and so forth, to go through and point them at the right article, not the DAB. It's a matter of judgment, as I put on the edit summary when making the change, to allow other editors quickly to see, and revert if necessary, what I was doing. Si Trew (talk) 20:29, 19 November 2009 (UTC)
I support Si Trew in this matter. Previously, all links to Botanic garden went to a DAB page; now they go via a redirect to the article Botanical garden. So it was necessary to check every old link to see whether it should go to the newly re-named DAB page or to the article. I agree that, in principle, those which should go to the article could have been left to go via the redirect, but given that every one needed to be checked, it seems pointless not to change them. This also alerts editors of those pages to the changed nature of the links to 'Botanic garden' and 'Botanical garden'. Peter coxhead (talk) 08:26, 20 November 2009 (UTC)
To emphasise the point (to Hesperian), links were not changed/piped etc just to avoid a link to a redirect. They were not a link to a redirect in the first place, they were links to a DAB. The choice then was to change the name and pipe it, or simply to change the name anyway, since in many articles the name of the garden was "botanic" but the article text or link said "botanical", or a mix of both. This is more a question of using consistent terminology (see consensus agreements ibidem ad nauseam) than just wikignoming. For example, Irish, Scottish and Australasian articles seem to prefer "botanic"; US and English usually "botanical" (not sure about Welsh as I can't remember any problematic cases there offhand). Peter is quite right in saying that every article was checked to make sure that its use was consistent, as much for terminology as for anything else. That is why, for example, articles linking to the redirects botanic gardens and botanical gardens are largely left alone, as their use was correct. It's really a matter of judgment, and I am sure in some cases I jumped the wrong way, which is why, as always, I left a meaningful edit summary. Also, taking WP:OWNFEET, Peter, Pdfdf and I managed this whole business in one morning without breaking anything along the way. That is why sometimes there are several edits to an article in what would seem to be able to be done in one, but then some articles WOULD have been broken along the way (because if the three point turns one has to make when moving articles about). Careful planning and cooperation between us made sure that nothing broke along the way. Si Trew (talk) 09:08, 20 November 2009 (UTC)

Rewrite[edit]

I realize that replacing an article with a "rewrite" can be extremely frustrating as it seems to ignore the work and thought that has gone into the existing article. However, sometimes an "all-at-once" change is much more efficient than gradual editing. I have been working on an update to this page for some time and invite editors to comment on what I've done. I will await comment for a week or so - and if none is forthcoming will put the "revised version" up in real time. Please let me know what you think - the proposed rewrite (still being worked on) is here. Granitethighs 03:50, 2 December 2009 (UTC)

Can you be more specific about "a week or so"? I don't think it's long enough; a month would probably be more reasonable. My guess is if you do a massive rewrite, it will get immediately reverted. See perhaps WP:OWNFEET for some reasoning behind making small, incremental improvements.
Can you explain perhaps why you think a total rewrite is necessary? 10:58, 2 December 2009 (UTC) Si Trew (talk)
Simon: (I added your signature above which I guess you forgot. Hope this is ok.) if you look at the rewrite so far I think you'll agree that it's a massive improvement. This is an important topic in both botany and horticulture and deserves a top quality article. My only slight growse is that it would have been nice to have been warned a little earlier; only yesterday I collected a book from the library which I was going to use today to add some stuff myself. However, what's been done is, in my view, extremely good. Peter coxhead (talk) 11:29, 2 December 2009 (UTC)
Thanks, I forgot to sign. I have some big problems with this. First, I have some problems with the English in the article; if it is going to be done, it should at least try to meet the gist of WP:MOS (I realise that is a moving target but there are obvious howlers as it stands right now). Second, I have a bigger problem that none of the edits to the article in the sandbox have an edit summary. So, I simply cannot see the direction of change at all here. I just can't see why it could not be incrementally edited instead of a massive rewrite.
User talk:Granitethighs is now asking for opinions about the changes when it is essentially impossible to see the changes as the difference is just "everything has changed" and there is no edit summary on any edit in the sandbox to explain the reason for the change. This makes reviewing the changes an extremely tedious process. See WP:ES. I dislike being presented with a fait accompli when consensus at least on the principle that a total rewrite was necessary could have achieved consensus here first.
So I come from a very oppositional viewpoint here, not for this article in particular, but I dislike monolithic rewrites by one author instead of incremental improvements by several. That does not mean I have already made my mind up, but the onus is on the person making the change to justify it, not on the person disliking the change to justify his dislike. Since there are no edit summaries and no explanation here of why a rewrite is needed, I am rather antipathetical to this change right now, and need to be persuaded.
The argument "it deserves a top quality article" is rather weak, so really does every article if we accept that it is worthy of inclusion at all. I simply do not agree that it is "extremely good", there are lots of typos and nonstandard uses but since the author already says it is a work in progress, i.e. a moving target, it is difficult for me to discuss any individual change – which of course is another way of saying, I dislike monolithic rewrites because I can't suggest small, incremental improvements, and it is hardly worth my giving examples because they may have the lifetime of a mayfly.
For example let's take the opening sentence.
Botanical gardens from a public perspective are generally attractive well-tended parks displaying a wide range of plants that are usually labeled with their botanical names.
Why "from a public perspective"? Why "generally attractive"? POV. Why not just put "Botanical gardens are well-tended parks cultivating and displaying a wide range of plants that are usually labeled with their botanical names." That is more NPOV to me. Some may not be well-tended, of course, but I think it is intended that they are and not, for example, a wildlife reserve that may be left to grow wild.
Why are the glasshouses "spectacular"? POV again. Why the hyphen in "world-wide" (and then used as "worldwide" later)?
In the first picture (Pisa botanical garden) why the abbreviation "est."? It's not as if the caption is short anyway.
Why the mix of use of en dashes, em dashes and hyphens? e.g. ("- mostly botanic gardens –"). See WP:DASH.
There is a mix of British and American spelling. (e.g. "colour" but "labeled"), "medieval" and "mediaeval" — I think the former is usually preferred even in British English these days.
The refs are good, but there are still some duplicate refs that need to be telescoped.
You will say these are picky, or that they exist in the original. well then fix the original in those regards, then decide on moving sections about. Or, I am quite happy to sub this for review, but it seems pointless to do so until then. But I think it's just too much to do it all at once, and I can't see the meat for the potatoes. Si Trew (talk) 11:56, 2 December 2009 (UTC)
OK, I appreciate the feedback and understand the concern. I thought this might happen and am aware that WP has two approaches - rewrite or incremental editing. IMO a rewrite is warranted when the article is in the earliest stages of development, which I think is where the current article is. However, when it is, say a B or GA then a rewrite is clearly an affront to the work already done and it is better to edit a bit at a time. Frankly I was not prepared to edit the current article word by word when there was so much that needed adding and adjusting. Also, as the changes I am suggesting are so substantial IMO there is little value in having the entire edit history. I take on board all the comments about editing - but think the "guts" of the article is more important at this stage than what kind of hyphens are being used, spelling etc. I am not suggesting what i have written is "finished" but I do think it is a substantial improvement. I am happy to delay putting this up as long as necessary - choose a time. You probably think I am both extremely presumptive and arrogant in this approach but the alternative is an extremely long and tedious process. I have incorporated virtually all of what is currently in the article. IMO better to work on improving what I have offered. Anyway - could you suggest a way forward Simon? If you find what I've done really offensive then I am happy to simply withdraw it. Granitethighs 00:31, 3 December 2009 (UTC)
Simon, when I said that the new version was very good, I meant in terms of the content. I think that 'botanical garden' is a topic worth a substantial (i.e. relatively lengthy) article. All articles should be good in terms of being well-researched, well-written, within all WP policies, etc., but not all should be substantial (e.g. I developed James Eustace Bagnall – in my view a sufficiently notable person for Wikipedia, but he shouldn't have a substantial article). I agree with you about the style of the English in the current draft. You may not be aware that Granitethighs has also been working on History of botany in much the same way, i.e. a total re-write. I've been watching the quality of the writing on this article improve over a couple of weeks (though I think it needs a bit more copy-editing). So I'm in favour of letting 'botanical garden' develop some more; be moved out of user space; then we can all descend and copy-edit if we want. If you look at an article that's in a mess – usually because lots of editors have added little bits at different times without paying any attention to the overall structure -- then it's very difficult to improve it incrementally. Natural history is another article that I think needs to be more substantial. Look at the version at http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?oldid=315065902, particularly the section "Description". In my view, it's just a mess. I completely re-wrote it for the current version Natural history#Definitions. (The rest of the page needs a lot of work to IMHO.) I tried incremental improvements (offline) but it didn't work. But I agree (as I've already said) that it would have been useful for Granitethighs to have discussed a complete re-write first, because there were some active editors on this page, and I for one was gathering material to add sections. However, this doesn't detract from the substantialness and solidity of the re-draft. Peter coxhead (talk) 10:20, 3 December 2009 (UTC)
I agree, actually, having time to look at it more, the revised version is a very substantial improvement on what we already have. I have been bound up the last few days with people adding essentially empty articles, claiming they have created them (which technically they have), which then editors like me have to go and either actually make at least into a respectable stub. User:Granitethighs probably got the result of that frustration, for which I can only apologise.
May I suggest Granitethighs not to worry too much about my picky complaints, get on with making great content, and I am more than happy to sub it for silly things like that, as I am sure Peter will want to do, too. But I do appreciate you have made a very substantial improvement to what we already have, and all power to you. Si Trew (talk) 15:45, 3 December 2009 (UTC)
Thank you both for your understanding - I realise that wading in like this is confronting and not a very satisfactory process. A longer time line and less intrusive approach would have been better. I'm still learning. Would it be OK if I keep working on the article in my Sandbox for say ?week or fortnight and then let it loose in real time? I realize that it is then likely to be mercilessly edited, which is fine by me, as it still needs a lot of work and that is what WP is all about. Granitethighs 23:29, 3 December 2009 (UTC)
I've done as much work as I want to do on the article for now. Can I put it up for others to edit? Granitethighs 03:39, 7 December 2009 (UTC)
Please do! Peter coxhead (talk) 12:30, 7 December 2009 (UTC)
Go ahead! I am no expert in this subject, but I'll happily sub it as best I can. Si Trew (talk) 16:30, 7 December 2009 (UTC)

(oudent) well done Granitethighs for moving it. I watched that Peter had made lots od small edits and so I left be while he did so. I should like to make a few myself, very minor, but wanted it to settle rather than run in with a porbeagle. Did I say porbeagle? I meant bargepole. It is an anagram.

So if Peter is done I will sub it a bit too, and this is an absolutely excellent article Granitethighs and a vast vast improvement. Thank you so much for your hard work here. I just sub it for slips then I would reccommend GA

18:48, 11 December 2009 (UTC)

Thanks for your tolerance of my porbeagle Simon, and for helping to clean it up. Granitethighs 22:42, 11 December 2009 (UTC)

(outdent) I've now subbed the article, all minor stuff. The main points:

  • I've removed pipes to the names of gardens. In my opinion, the name of the garden should not hide under the name of a place, since the link does not go to the place, it goes to the garden. This should simply be made apparent.
  • Except where context would make it ludicrious, I've changed "botanic" to "botanical", since I thought we had consensus to call it a botanical garden.
  • I've fixed for WP:DASH.
  • I split the America and Russia sections in 19th Century, since they seemed to be rather arbitrarily conjoined.
  • I've renameed "Oceania" to "Southern hemisphere" since South Africa is not really in Oceania.
  • I've made a few spelling changes to use British English, since the article seems mostly to be in that variant. I've left verbs ending in -ize though, see Fowler.
  • I've added (and checked) lots of links. Some may think I have WP:OVERLINKed, but they are easier to take out than put in.
  • I've occasionally rephrased surrounding text so that the link can stand without an elaborate pipe. I've no objection to piping simply to change a singular to a plural form and things like that, but I don't think a pipe should go to a completely different topic from what it says. See Principle of least astonishment.
  • I've added a few (three) redlinks. I'm not scared of redlinks, and simply getting rid of redlinks by not linking at all is, to me, the wrong solution.

The main thing I want to do, now, is just separate the notes from the refs, i.e. a separate group for "notes". I don't think there are many. Otherwise the refs all look good. So I am more or less done. With the redlinks I realise this would probably fail a GA review or something, but my solution to that is, write a stub article for each of them, don't just remove them. In fact they are the names of three gardens in China.

Nice job Granitethighs. Best wishes and Happy Christmas Si Trew (talk) 10:52, 20 December 2009 (UTC)

Thanks Si - all those changes have "polished" the article nicely - and by noting what you've done I've learned some general principles of editing in Wikipedia too. Granitethighs 21:25, 20 December 2009 (UTC)
Oh, there is also a redlink to the Linnaean B. G. in Philadelphia. I also overlooked removing the pipes for New Zealand and South Africa under WP:ASTONISH, duly done now. Happy New Year. Si Trew (talk) 17:14, 1 January 2010 (UTC)

I didn't see the rating until I clicked on the talk, I think we should go to a GA review. A few bits need to be brushed up, little fiddly details, but it is a damned good article and take it to GA I reckon.

Si Trew (talk) 19:11, 4 May 2010 (UTC)

Hi Simon - not sure how to do this but sounds a good idea to me. Granitethighs 10:28, 5 May 2010 (UTC)

Of any interest?[edit]

By chance, well "Random Page", I found René_Louis_de_Girardin, who seems to have had quite a hand in the development of the French landscape garden. I cleared up the English a bit but it still needs more work on it, I imagine it was written by a Francophone who has quite good English but slips on prepositions and articles and stuff, just in the way that French and English rather differ that way. I just note it here because I think it may be of interest, and I am sure you can follow the links. Certainly that article needs more work; I hope I have just made it a little better.

My sincere best wishes as always Si Trew (talk) 10:13, 9 February 2011 (UTC)