Aug 1, 2010, 9:30:25 PM8/1/10
to nabha meghani, tanay bose, arjunan, mani nair, Pankaj Kumar, efloraofindia
This is why I love this group. There are people with little or no botanical knowledge, but their knowledge about plants is amazing. Your knowledge about plants, I suppose is second to none, and your enthusiasm unparalleled. That is the beauty of the nature. You can know it if you have desire to do so. I remember, when I was struggling to differentiate various species of Brassica, my mother showed me few days old young plants with barely three or four leaves and could tell me difference between what we call mustards and coles. I have learnt many things about plants from her, and imagine she never went to school. Here on our group also there are several nonbotanists, Garg ji, Dinesh ji, Tabish ji, Yazdy ji, you, to name a few (others pl. excuse me for not naming them) who are both the engine and the oil for this group. We are lucky to be the part of this group. Perhaps my interest in plants (nature) would not have been renewed, had I not joined this group. I would have remained at armchair botanist.
This group has also changed working style of we botanists (at least me). Earlier if we got a new plant, we would collect our books, get hold of microscope, needle, brush and blade, and sit for hours to identify the unknown plant, and may still be sometimes unsuccessful, and then send the plant or photograph to an expert or a mailing group (TAXACOM was my favourite then). Now I do the reverse. Whenever, I get a new plant, I immediately send the photograph to our group, and ninety per cent of the times or more I get identification (or important clues) within minutes. Only if I don't get identification here, I sit with the plant and books/internet, or enlarge photograph on my computer and attempt its identification.
The group has also changed my working philosophy. We were told by our elders/teachers that you should tell the identification only if you are 100 % sure. If we follow this policy, not 10 % of plants would get identified. We here have invented a new strategy (and I advocate it strongly), just throw a wild guess (don't hesitate about it), it will initiate rigorous search by other members to reach the correct identity. And this I think is the trademark of this group. And this we do exchanging light hearted comments to keep the spirit on. There was a lot of knowledge and goodwill involved about the LATIN NAMKARAN CEREMONY OF DINESH JI YESTERDAY.
Let the spirit continue, and as they say "IS GROUP KO KISSI KI NAZAR NA LAG JAI"