Re: Databasing

From: Carl Strohmenger (HSC) (
Date: Tue Jul 13 1999 - 11:11:29 PDT

Date: Tue, 13 Jul 1999 14:11:29 -0400 (EDT)
From: "Carl Strohmenger (HSC)" <>
Message-Id: <aabcdefg2559$foo@default>
Subject: Re: Databasing

> On Tue, 13 Jul 1999 03:46:26 -0700, "Steve Alton"
> <> wrote:
> >Does anyone use a computer database to keep track of their CP
> >collection? I am starting to forget what I have received/sent/hung
> on >to after a busy season of plant-exchanging.

I set up a database several years ago in FileMaker Pro to keep track of all
of my plants (including CPs). Since then, I have added additional fields to
the original structure as needed. This has left some gaps in the DB in
certain fields, but it has not been a problem for me so far.
        The original DB had fields for Botanical name, Common name, Family,
Growth habit, Flowering time of year, Light requirements, Water
requirements, Salt tolerance, A large notes field, A special uses field
(such as medicinal, edible, etc.), and probably a few more fields. Since
then I have added fields for When acquired, What form acquired (seeds,
seedlings, container plants, etc.), Source, People expressing a special
interest in a species, and some more.
        The original DB was used in writing a (non-CP) plant guide along
with 5 other people. Since then, it has been useful in keeping track of the
various plants that I grow or have grown or want to grow. One problem with
it is that with so many fields in each record and with many species
(records) in the DB, I have fallen behind inkeeping it up-to-date. I
probably need to drop some of the fields and make a revised DB which is
easier to maintain. If I undertake another book project, I will probably do
this. Right now, I am having too much fun growing plants to have to worry
about keeping the DB up.

        Incidently, FileMaker Pro is available for both Windows and Mac and
is cross platform. This was valuable in working with co-authors using the
other platform. It is also easy to learn and generating new reports is a

- Carl

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