H. collina, Texas source

Rodger Whitlock totototo@telus.net
Thu, 27 Oct 2005 15:23:53 PDT
On 26 Oct 05 at 18:50, ConroeJoe@aol.com wrote:

> Hi Gang,
> This came up last year, but herein I try again.
> If anyone has stock of the yellow-flowered form within Texas,
> I'd sure like to arrange a trade for seeds or corms.  
> It is a great plant for this area (just north of Houston)
> because, while it is a winter grower it is also very tolerant
> of summer rains.  And, if you grow it in a pot, you can just
> put the whole pot away for 4 months in the heat and wet of
> summer.

Not to go after you in particular, Joe, but for heaven's sake,
people, look over what you've written before you click "send".

I can guess that Joe's "H." in the Subject: header means 
"Homeria" -- but guessing isn't good enough. Perhaps he means 
Hippeastrum collina? Hesperochiron collina? Who knows?

At the risk of sounding, once again, like a cyber-grinch (or 
maybe a cyber-Auntie), a few guidelines to help get your 
message across:

1. Don't abbreviate. Exception: generic names in the body of 
the message *after* first writing out the name in full. 
(Putting the generic name in the Subject: header doesn't 

2. Don't abbreviate. If you're going to Bangkok, write 
"Bangkok", not "BKK". It may be kewl to use the IATA codes for 
airports but lots of folks will be scratching their heads 
wondering wothehell you meant.

3. When specifying locations, be explicit. Write "Dallas, 
Texas", "Dallas, TX". Also write "Bangkok, Thailand". Bandwidth 
is cheap these days so writing TX instead of Texas is a trivial 

4. When specifying locations, be explicit. Write "Dallas, 
Texas", "Dallas, TX". Also write "Bangkok, Thailand". Remember 
that the PBS list has subscribers all over the world and 
plain ol' ignorance is widespread. There's no guarantee that 
any given reader has ever heard of Dallas -- Dallas, Texas, 
that is. Nor Bangkok.

5. When specifying locations, be specific. Write "10 miles 
north of Dallas, Texas." You never know when this might make 
the difference between getting a plant you want and not getting 

6. Assume nothing. See points 1-5 for examples.

Homework exercise: think of five other specific composition
errors that impeded communication.

Class dismissed.

Rodger Whitlock
Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
Maritime Zone 8, a cool Mediterranean climate

on beautiful Vancouver Island

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