Help! I'm lost in the jungle of online plant identification. The internet is a useful but often confusing, or worse, inaccurate tool to figure out the names of plants.
Please take a look at the following plant photos. All are from gardens in the Philippines--most here in Dumaguete or Camp Lookout--but, as the gardeners told me, it's possible the plant was originally growing along the road or on the side of a mountain.
If you know the plant or want to investigate online sources, please let me know the names, both scientific and common. The first three plants have been identified, but the rest need names. Some plants have guiding clues in the caption, but most don't. Feel free to post your answers in the comments section.
Or just enjoy the pictures! Thanks.
As I learned from researching the previous post on tropical flowers, there's a lot of inaccurate plant and flower information on the internet. Usually the most trustworthy websites are those associated with established botanical gardens or arboretums (for example, the Missouri Botanical Garden) or university botany departments (the University of Hawaii).
Sometimes plant collector or enthusiasts' organizations provide reputable and user-friendly online information. (In my flower research I discovered that the International Heliconia Society has excellent pictures and clear classifications of not only heliconias, but also the many species of the ginger family.) It pays, thought, to be skeptical of some of these amateur groups. (The passion flower collectors' sites, for example, were a little wacky. Passion flower?!)
Commercial garden or plant suppliers are often very inconsistent in naming species, so try to avoid them. Finally, not surprisingly, Wikipedia doesn't always give complete botanical information on tropical plants, and worse, some of its information is incorrect. If your search starts there, be sure to verify it elsewhere. Good luck and thanks again.