Search Tips

General Search tips

  • All searches are case-insensitive.
  • Multiple words in a search box will automatically be “AND”-ed together. For example, a scientific name search for “Rosa Peace” will find Rosa ‘Peace’ as well as Rosa ‘World Peace’ and others.
  • If you’re searching for a cultivar name use the “Scientific Name” search.
  • The “Other Results” box on the left will link you to information of possible relevance in other sections of the site.

Plant Names

  • As some plants cannot be distinguished from their close relatives by scientific name, they have been assigned an additional key letter to follow the genus and/or species. For example, broccoli is listed as Brassica oleracea (b), cauliflower as Brassica oleracea (f); green beans are listed as Phaseolus (g) and yellow beans as Phaseolus (y), etc. Search by common name to find the key letters to use.
  • Names of some closely related varieties have been combined when they are part of a named series or range. For example, Petunia ‘Pink Cascade’ and Petunia ‘White Cascade’ will both be found under Petunia ‘Cascade Hybrids.’

Wildcard Searching

  • The wildcard character (*) can be used anywhere in a partial string of letters to find matches.
    • Examples:
    • brass* will find any name in the database that has a word starting with “brass” including Brassavola, Brassica, Brassolaeliocattleya, ‘Brass Tacks’, etc.
    • If you’re unsure how to spell ginkgo, you could enter gin*o.
    • The wildcard at the beginning of a string may help to find cultivars listed in two languages: *red fox would find the cultivar ‘Rotfuchs/Red Fox’ and find compound words: *wing would find ‘BabyWing Hybrids’. A note of caution - * used at the beginning of a word will often return many other results. The *wing example will also result in ‘Dragon Wing’, ‘Glowing Embers’, etc. •
  • Use the wildcard character (*) if you’re not retrieving expected results or are not sure of punctuation used in a name. For example, a nursery search for “logee” returns no results. However, a search for “logee*” will retrieve the entry for “Logee’s Greenhouses.”
  • If you don’t use a wildcard the search will retrieve only exact matches. For example, if you search for “heli*” as a scientific name, you’ll get a listing of possible matches to choose from, including Helianthus, Helichrysum, Heliconia, Heliopsis, etc. If you do NOT use the wildcard, the search will look for only those names that contain the exact word “heli” and no matches will be found.

Common Name Searching

  • Click the down arrow next to “Scientific name” to search by common name.
  • Search for common name using the singular form of the name, for example, “tomato” not “tomatoes.”
  • If you’re not finding a common name try adding the wildcard (*) to the end of it, e.g., “bean*”
  • A search by Common Name will show you what the scientific name is. You may wish to note the scientific names of plants you will search for often. Searching by scientific name will give you faster, more accurate results.
  • The common name you’re searching for may apply to more than one plant. When this happens, you will be able to choose from a list of more specific common names. For example, if you search for Marigold, you will get a list of marigold names including:
         Marigold, African
         Marigold, American
         Marigold, Aztec …
    Simply click on the corresponding scientific name for the plant you want.

Online Site Section Searching

  • Information is linked to the scientific name as in the other sections of the site.
  • Search strategies might include searching for basic, broad information such as genus (Hosta or Rosa) instead of the very specific Hosta ‘Blue Umbrella’ or Rosa ‘Peace’. A search for genus and species (Acer griseum) will still yield more than a very narrow search (Acer ‘Autumn Fantasy’) but might be more useful than a very broad search for Acer (maple).
  • Information on plants like Saintpaulia or various orchids that are commonly grown indoors, might transcend growing conditions; useful information should be relevant no matter where found.