"One of the most delightful things about a garden is the anticipation it brings."

Friday, March 8, 2013

What ever happened to Blotanical?

Is anyone in the know about what has happened or is happening at Blotanical?  I admit I quit going there as often when the whole way picks were done changed.  I personally didn't care for the "rating" of blog posts by the number of picks given.  I had always visited Blotanical (which I joined in January of 2009) to find new blogs, which in turn lead me to meeting new friends from all over the world.  After awhile I only visited blogs that were either on my blogroll or ones that I came to by "blog hopping".  A couple of times this week I thought about Blotanical and thought I would see if I had missed out on any news.  I looked through the forums and the newest topic I could find were posts on how to cheat Blotanical to raise your blog in the faves.  I know this was written more as a way to out the cheaters, not for that bloggers personal gain (it even says "tongue firmly in cheek" in the title).  I remember some similar blog posts about the same thing a year or two ago.
Then I started looking through the blogs I had once faved, back years ago when I was very active and I started to feel kind of sad about the whole thing. 
When I started my blog in 2009 Blotanical had such a community feel to it.  That feeling seemed to be less and less as the whole picking thing changed - at least in my own personal opinion.
I admit, that life has gotten busier and I have not been as good about blogging or blog visiting, so maybe the Blotanical community still has the same feel it had years ago and I have just gotten so out of the loop that I don't know who anyone active is there anymore.
So, has anyone heard a word about if or when anything is ever going to happen?  Or is there another place that you garden bloggers go now to find another great community of garden bloggers?

I felt like I needed to have a garden picture, so here is my pond!
All words and photos in this post are property of A Gardener in Progress. Pin It

39 comments:

  1. and what a lovely pond it is!
    I'm a new blogger and promptly signed up to both Blotantical and Blooming Blogs once I 'found' them. I have to admit that I don't regularly use both sites - mostly a time thing - but have found a few good blogs and continue to follow them in my blog roll and blog hop via these. I find that works for me!
    I couldn't quite get the hang of the pick thing and then when I visited popular blogs found that these had not been updated for months even years in a couple of instances.
    I did try build up some points to ask a question on the forum - but gave up on that too. It's a shame it's not so active, reading some of the older posts - it seemed quite a good, friendly communtiy!

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    1. My blogroll is probably the main way that I visit, but I feel like I'm missing out on a lot of other really good blogs out there, but then I guess there isn't time to read them all :)

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  2. I´ve also been thinkin about that, what happened? I also don´t like the raiting system and only klick one pick if I even do that. I feel that there are many of my favourite bloggers that aren´t even active anymore and it feels sad... The reason why... I haven´t got a clue.. I don´t blog as much as I once did but since I began to work again, there ain´t much time for that!
    But I do love to read the once that´s still going storng (read yours) and think it´s great to share this interest even if we live in different parts of the wold. Hope you´ll have a wonderful weekend / Hugs gittan

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    1. I'm glad I made a friend in Sweden through Blotanical and I like trying to keep up with all that is going on with you. I hope one day I can visit your shop and garden in person! :)

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  3. Hi,

    I always click when I view a blog, but it's always just the one heart because that way it's fair and purely just to say I've visited their blog as quite often I view blogs without leaving a comment - usually down to time but I have at least read it.
    TBH I think the community has pretty much gone there. Those who used to be the 'big guns' rarely blog anymore, or don't seem to get half the number of favourites and comments anymore.

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  4. As always, I love seeing photos of your gardens, your pond is such a treat!

    I haven't been to Blotanical in ages. I went there this morning since you brought it up and couldn't remember my log-in info, sheesh. I finally got it. I never liked the competition aspect of the whole thing, but did meet some wonderful bloggers through there.

    I just checked the news tab and nothing has been written since May 2011. I wonder if something happened to Stuart.

    Have a wonderful weekend Catherine ~ FlowerLady

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  5. Your pond looks pretty, Catherine. I had forgotten about Blotanical until you mentioned it. No idea what forum folks use now. We don't have many flowers now that we have moved.
    Hope you all enjoy the weekend.
    It finally stopped raining here and it is 65 degrees today!

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  6. I haven't been to Blotanical in forever, I just didn't have time for it. I visit garden blogs either via the links in the side bar of my own blog, or on my Blogger Reading List (and I'm afraid I've been letting that slip recently too!)

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  7. I have never used Blotanical much, reminded me of being back in grade school with the stars on the chart. I usually pick blogs by reference on other blogs.

    Eileen

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  8. No Idea, I personally find the whole thing to be a bit confusing. I don't pay any attention to the picks part, but check now and agin for a new blog to try. Your pond looks great, by the way!

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  9. I'm with you Catherine. I didn't like the "rate this post" rating system either. Every post, large or small, takes time, thought, and effort, and each is deserving of being read. The whole popularity slant is too reminiscent of high school for me. I miss the old Blotanical too. I've made some great blogging friendships through Blotanical, in the past (I've even met a few in person), but now I honestly don't see too many newcomers. I know Stuart had planned a revamp last year, as the site was running on 3 cylinders, but then I think those plans went awry, and now Blotanical just seems to be spluttering along. I'd love to see it return to more of its former glory, but I think it's more likely to go the way of the Model A. So sad :(

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  10. Great question, Catherine. It seemed that there was one or two blogs that always got all the picks and the lovely winning badges were sported proudly on their sidebar. But were they any "better" than the other blogs? No! "Better" is subjective, a relative term and I believe it's unfair to base the merit of a blog with this subjective method. Stuart went so far as to use the word "popular" which cemented my feelings of being back in high school--ick! I believe Stuart was well-intentioned but the process set us against each other in a competitive way and it was WAY too easy for feelings to get hurt. No thank you.

    That said, until I joined Blotanical, I had one or two hits on my blog on my best days. After joining and meeting fellow gardeners, I was set! For that alone, I thank Stuart and his brainchild.

    I finally stopped using the directory after launching my Google Reader which basically does the same thing with all blogs, not just those on Blotanical.

    I too wonder if Blotanical is still a buzzing thriving place like it was back when you and I were newbies. (I joined around the same time.) Thanks for the memories. Enjoy this fabulous sunshine, Catherine.

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  11. Nice pond :-) After I joined I could no longer sign in. I wrote them about the fact my username/password didnt work but they never got back to me. So I dont know what happened to them but that is a good question!!!

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  12. Your pond is like an oasis. I've not being to blotanical for a while. The whole rating business doesn't appeal to me.

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  13. Your pond is beautiful. A pond is on my bucket list but not sure in New England weather and my vintage age whether or not it will ever get dug. Thank you for sharing yours.

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  14. i found blotanical useful when I first started my blog but I haven't visited in ages. I didn't like the rating system either. The UK Veg website is a really good site, but not sure of any other international sites.

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  15. I know some new bloggers have used Blotanical lately. Think after Stuart took a break to redo the sight it just took the back burner and never made it. At one point there was supposed to be a new sight altogether. I do know he is on Facebook though I am not friends with him.

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    1. Getting to know and see bloggers on FB has been great. I guess things are bound to change, I just met so many great people - like you - on Blotanical.

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  16. Hi
    I joined Blotanical in 2008 and as someone else has said it was great for getting readers but now there is no sense of community. I think it just got so big and also I think once bloggers have 'met' a few like minded souls they start to form their own groups. I came back to Blotanical earlier this year having closed my twitter accounts and I used it seriously for a few weeks as I was looking for new bloggers to connect with. I also tried Blooming Blogs but various elements of it irritated me and I think there is a connection between the chap who runs it and Blotanical. Now I use google reader and also the communities on gmail which are springing up, there are a few lively gardening ones.
    I get the impression that Blotanical has been left to run itself and the gurus are doing all the administration without any compensation.

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    1. I probably need to start using google reader too. That sounds like what others have been doing. I love seeing what others are up to, but just don't always find the time to read blogs.

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    2. Hi!! I am the big trouble maker :-) who outed the cheating system in blotanical. I absolutely LOVE a puzzle and wouldn't stop until I figured it out. I sat on the information for about 5 months I'd say, and finally made the decision to do the very tongue in cheek post. I thought there was a very real chance i could be kicked out for the post, or get hostile messages...neither. People have been awesome!! And the people who were cheating, seem to have stopped finally.
      I am a guru who processes new blogs. I go in every day or two to process and check messages for new blogger questions. I am pretty good at figuring out feed problems etc...I build my own websites for the store....and can often sort things out. But not always. There is a blog with a perfectly good feed, but no picture...I have contacted Stuart about many similar issues, but have never received an answer. I've explained the cheating issue to him so it would be an easy fix...no answer. You are correct..lee are on our own. The gurus are doing the bulk of the work. I dont mind, I enjoy it, but it would be really nice to get help when we need it.

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  17. I've not been back to Blotanical in a couple of years. I don't blog as frequently as I used to--there are only so many flowers in my garden. I'm also busy writing fiction. I'm revising a novel that I submitted to an agent. She asked if I'd do the work of transforming it from a romantic mystery into a thriller. Yes, but it's turned into a new book, rather than a revision! Keeps me happy and busy.

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    1. That's exciting! I'll hope you'll keep us posted on when it's getting published!
      I feel the same way about what's left to take pictures of and blog about in my yard, probably part of the reason I've not been blogging as much either.

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  18. I go by Blotanical about once a month to look at the new blogs. It's still the best place for me to find new, high quality garden blogs, and dozens of new ones get added each month. I agree that the site doesn't have the community feel it did in my early days (2009-10). As you may know, Stuart hired a programmer last year to help him completely revamp the site. Then the programmer absconded with Stuart's money without finishing the job. Stuart was planning to shut the site down at that point, but many of us asked him if he couldn't find another solution. He hasn't been heard from since, and I think he has, as Helen said, just left the site to run itself. I've taken a look at Blooming Blogs, but haven't had a chance yet to register there or to really check it out.
    BTW, Google announced this week that they are retiring Google Reader as of July 1 -- so many of us are looking for an alternative to that, too.
    -Jean

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  19. I go by Blotanical about once a month to look at the new blogs; it's still the best place for me to find new high-quality garden blogs, and dozens of new ones are being added each month. I have looked at Blooming Blogs, but haven't had a chance to really check it out or to register there.
    As for what's happened to Blotanical, you can find the "latest" by clicking on the "Version 2 coming soon" link in the top right hand corner. In 2011, Stuart hired a programmer to completely redo the site; a little over a year ago, he announced that the programmer had gone AWOL without finishing the job. Stuart was planning to shut the site down at that time, but many of us begged him to consider other alternatives. That's the last we heard from Stuart; he has gone AWOL himself and left the site, as Helen noted, to run itself.
    BTW, Google announced this week that it is shutting down Google Reader as of July 1 -- so many of us are looking for an alternative to that, too. -Jean

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  20. I joined Blotanical simply to find other garden bloggers, and that I did. But I couldn't get into the popular group, and my feelings towards it soured quickly. WAY too high school for me! But many of the blogs I found then are still in my blog roll, so it was useful in that way.

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  21. You know, I kind of did the same thing...but then I decided to merge all my 4 blogs into 1 lifestyle blog and so my blog wasn't just about gardening anymore so I haven't added that one on there but I do miss it a lot. I liked those people so very much.
    Debbie

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  22. TBH I find Blotanical hard to work out and very rarely use it. The ones that I have faved on there are on my blogroll anyway so I just go to them that way. I'll have the odd delve in there if I want to look for new blogs but I prefer to look at blogs recommended by the bloggers I already follow.
    Love your pond btw.

    Linda
    http://thetenaciousgardener.blogspot.co.uk/

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  23. I thought it might be a good time to 'chip' in if I may.
    I am Andrew the Admin guy on www.bloomingblogs.com.
    Everyone is always welcome to join up at Blooming Blogs, all that is asked of you, complete your profile to at least 80% - It's your profiles with your blog links that attract our casual non member visitors. After that it is entirely up to you how much or how little you participate. The sole aim being - To push and pull visitors to your own garden blog.

    Let me also say that I am in no way connected with Blotanical, although I did try and communicate with the owner before I started Blooming Blogs late last year(2012). I never got an answer regarding my inquiry to help and assist, so that is why Blooming Blogs came into being.

    One other really important thing ! - Google Reader is going to be shut down real soon, July 1st 2013 http://marketingland.com/google-to-close-google-reader-36125

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  24. Oh yea ~ loving the pond! Good job!
    'hugs from afar'

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  25. Love your pond. I envy that you have control over yours! Ours is part of a series of waterways that eventually end in the Long Island Sound, so I have no control what so ever! Curious that I just thought of Blotanical, and ended here on your blog instead of theirs! Havent visited the site in a year!

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  26. Love your pond, had moved on from Blotanical, and per chance found you while deciding to take an overdue look!

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  27. Problems leaving a comment on your site, but I do love your pond!

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  28. It looks like Blotanical's site is down. I hope that this is not a long-term thing. It would be a great shame to see Blotanical disappear!

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  29. hi, Very nice blog:)
    I am a new gardner and a new blogger myself, check out me blog.

    http://seedgerminator.wordpress.com/2013/10/09/cabbage/

    Any suggestions and feedback will be appreciative.

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  30. BTW Blotanical is still a work in progress.

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  31. Must be something good about it as I have just found your blog through it. I hadn't been on for a while and couldn't find it but found you instead. I too didn't get the ping thing so did use to just find blogs I liked which I do miss. I have just returned to my blog since September-woops and was looking for some new blogs to follow- think I have just done that.Flowerlady- not Lorraine though I do also follow her blog

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  32. I am not sure but I have found your blog looking for it,

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  33. I hope Blotanical comes back soon. I really enjoyed their services. There is nothing else like them on the web! (=

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