I hope Dean, you don't mind too much if I kick off this topic here. It's to let everyone know that for the last 2 months, I've been putting together a site that I hope will prove useful to anyone who grows palms and exotic plants. I guess it should be in Share-a-Site, but it's not officially launched, and neither is it an informational website. It's a free ads site I built called "freshpalmseeds.com" and I need some feedback.
The idea I had in mind, is that commercial and private traders can advertise at the same venue, and it's strictly for seeds. I'm leaning towards palm seeds obviously, and I have links on every page (in the footer) to the IPS and EPS - both of which I'm subscribed to. What I get out of it is hopefully something that people use, and maybe some Google ads revenue to cover hosting. There's also a paying service for commercial suppliers if they want to include a company logo and info.
I just finished it today, and for want of some smallprint it's fully functional. You can register and post ads straight away. It's in English, Dutch and Spanish for the most part, and any language can be added if the right person has an hour to spare!
The main emphasis is that you can advertise seeds that will be available in a certain month of the year, or alternatively, seeds that are ready now. Future trading for what is really "fresh produce" is something that I think is important. In time, it will give everyone a good indication of what species are ready to harvest in various parts of the world throughout the year. That isn't something that many of us are aware of, but it would be useful to know. You can then budget ahead and decide what you want to buy, and from whom. I also think that the big seed sellers often get a bad press if it's felt they monopolize the market, so now we can all be seed sellers. The site is easy to use, and fairly self-explanitary.
Here is the link you need to access the site: http://www.freshpalm...om/ad/index.php
For now, it has two dummy ads running, one without a photo from a "Private seller" and the other, a photo ad from a "Business seller". They both link to my email address, so don't be shy in using the contact form if you want to "contact the seller". I also apologize in advance if that's your L. mapu photo! I borrowed it for the site build, and will remove it if needs be. Ignore the prices, as I didn't give any thought to that side of things, and to reiterate, there are no seeds for sale on the site yet. As soon as I get a couple of ads, I'll take the current ones down.
With regards to your Internet privacy, the site uses a customer contact form, so your email address is not visible, only the name you register with. You only need provide a name, email address and password to register, and as I say, your email address is not available to spam robots, and your password is encrypted in an SQL database, so even I couldn't see if I wanted too.
If you like it, let me know! I think it's worth bookmarking, and I'm my own harshest critic when it comes to new ideas. What I do know for sure, is that a lot of my up and coming palms came from fellow growers and palm enthusiasts, the likes of Wai`anae Steve, FijiJim and PalmetierMeg. If you catch these people at the right time, you get a bargain, and ultra fresh seeds. The same goes for a lot of other members, these are just my personal experiences.
I'll be approaching a few seed sellers personally, so you might want to "watch this space" as they say. I'd be thrilled if a few people here sign up. Remember, you don't need to have seeds available for sale right now. You know your own trees and when the seeds are ripe, so post an ad now, and set your date and price!
Okay Dean, you can kick me into the forum of your choice!