I am building a vegetable gardener website that allows visitors to start gardening journals in which they can record all kinds of data like the days until maturity, plant size and width, harvest date and also propagation method.

With propagation method i mean how they started growing the plant. Right now i only have the option from seeds or from plant. With the latter i mean that they bought a small plant at a gardening centre. But there are more ways to grow a vegetable/fruit plant. In fact, there are many different ways. But i don't want to list them all because i also want to use the same list to filter garden journals results. For instance, if you plan to grow asparagus from rhizomes then you only want to see garden journals that grew asparagus from rhizomes and not from seed for example. I don't want to overwhelm the user with too many filters to choose from.

So far i was thinking about making a list that has the following:

  1. Seed
  2. Bulb / corm
  3. Rhizome / tuber
  4. Nut
  5. Cutting
  6. Plant

Would such a list be enough? I'd love to hear from you


This is the propagation list i have made after doing more research. Do you guys think this list is inclusive enough?

-------artificial propagation-------
  • Maurice, I'm sorry, but I do not believe we will be able to answer your question. Your question is asking our opinion or preference. Do you have a question that would require a fact. Something that can have a wrong or right answer. Your question in it's current form can not have a right or wrong answer. You could ask for the scientific terms for starting plant various way. Someone could give you a list of terms that would be a appropriate to use.
    – GardenGems
    Nov 22, 2019 at 4:58

1 Answer 1


I can see where you are coming from, Maurice, you are trying to normalize your database which would appear to be a database question, but the normalization can only be achieved by someone with specialized domain knowledge which is why your question is here and not in another forum, although it might do as well in a botanical / scientific arena.

The primary division here is seed or not seed, that is vegetative. The distinction is important since genetics are involved. With a seed often you are dealing with something potentially genetically different from the parents. Seeds come in various structures such as pomes and nuts and spores, where the embryo is wrapped in various layers to help with success in survival. Garlic does not produce nuts, but it does produce seed, so you don't want to make "nuts" a special category since it won't apply to most plants and as soon as you know the name of the plant you already know whether it produces a nut or not. Recording "from seed" will be enough information, so that is a toggle, either seed or vegetatively; both is not possible and neither is neither.

On the vegetative side we retain the genetics, however there are many ways of propagating vegetatively and again most of these will be species specific because gardeners have greater success with one method or another, some of which might be quite impossible given the species so you open yourself to potential internal database contradiction. You could quite easily end up with a list of 20 methods from cuttings to air layering to division. You might want to make it a text box until, through user input, you have some popular sub-categories and then assess the need for extra fields later. The text box could also record seed information such as parentage.

If your garden journal info also has keywords such as "rhizome" attached then it will be easy to match those keywords with the textbox in the recorded field.

  • @ Colin Beckingham. I like your seed/vegetative suggestion, but as a db designer myself I can say that it is not feasible to use values derived from a textbox as a filter for reporting/querying due to too much variation. Another possible answer would be to create a table to track genera-specific vegetative propagation methods (e.g. "Iris" = "Rhizome", "Hemerocallis" = "Division", "Layering" [via a proliferation]) and then load those values into a "Propagation Method" combo or listbox, but now we're talking about a ton of back-end maintenance - and a different forum.
    – Jurp
    Nov 22, 2019 at 14:07
  • thx for the answer Colin, People will use my filter to filter garden journals. Garden journals can be about a variety of vegetables so the list must include all possible propagation methods. Sometimes a plant can be grown from both seed and a rhizome such as asparagus for example. People who are planning to start asparagus from seed do not want to read the garden journals of people who started asparagus from rhizomes. So thats where the filter comes in. It useful for situations like when someone is looking for asparagus journals
    – Maurice
    Nov 23, 2019 at 10:03
  • @Colin ive updated my post, could you give me your opinion please?
    – Maurice
    Nov 23, 2019 at 10:50
  • In the absence of a clearly defined target market the best you can do is float a trial balloon, collect actual results and then revise the approach according to demand. Nov 23, 2019 at 12:47

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