Tag Archives: twitter

Twitter Chats: Online Garden Parties

Participating in a gardening twitter chat is a great way to learn and meet new people. A twitter chat is like attending a party where 20 people are standing in the living room talking generally about the same thing. I visualize them standing because usually a chat is for one hour, which goes by fast.

There are several gardening-related twitter chats, each with their own formats differ. Some have predetermined questions while others have a theme for the day.  In some chats, the moderators compile the conversation like a transcript to be viewed later. Twitter chats also can have guests for a particular topic or collaborate with sponsors for giveaways.

Twitter chats are free and open to anyone who has a Twitter account. The more people are participating, the more often messages are posted, and the faster it seems to move. Messages can appear very fast so you have to really stay focused on the conversation. If you are new to Twitter, it may be helpful to first read as people type. There is no need to actually tweet a response. As you feel more comfortable, jump in and respond when you can. Some people post photos but that is optional.

Sometimes during a chat, a few people seem to get off track, as if they walked into the kitchen, looked out the window, and started discussing the weather. To keep track of the actual chat, it is useful to use tweetdeck or tchat.io. Using the hashtag, these are able to order the tweets so you only see the tweets relevant to that particular chat. These tools help to focus on the chat for the hour instead of seeing all of the tweets from all of the people you are following.


#gardenchat, 9-10 pm EST, weekly, hosted by Bren Haas @BrenHaas


#treechat, 2-3 pm EST, every 2 weeks (#treechat and #plantchat alternate), hosted by Corona Tools (@Coronatools)

#plantchat, 2-3 pm EST, every 2 weeks (#treechat and #plantchat alternate), hosted by American Horticultural Society (@AHS_gardening) and Corona Tools (@Coronatools)


#landscapechat, 2-3 pm EST, weekly, hosted by Corona Tools (@coronatools)

#seedchat, 9-10 pm EST, weekly, hosted by Growing North @growingnorth

#groundchat, 8-9 pm EST, weekly, hosted by Cristina da Silva @CristinaGardens


#herbchat, 2-3 pm EST, weekly, hosted by Geri Laufer @gardengeri

#growingnorth, 9-10 pm EST, weekly, hosted by Growing North @growingnorth

Gardeners! Check out these gardening twitter chats!

Gardeners! Take advantage of the many, hour-long chats on Twitter. Like virtual garden parties, you meet up with old friends on a weekly basis to talk about a particular gardening topic. You can ask questions, help others by providing answers, learn more about a particular topic, get to know experts in the field, and meet new friends. There is a garden-related chat every day of the work week. All of the times below are Eastern Standard Time but not all originate in the U.S., a few are in Canada.

Monday:          #plantchat, 2-3 pm; #gardenchat 9-10 pm

Tuesday:          #treechat 2-3 pm

Wednesday:    #landscapechat 2-3 pm

Thursday:        #herbchat 2-3 pm; #growingnorth 9-10 pm

Friday:             #groundchat 2-3 pm

Tweeting over the Garden Fence: Weekly Chats

Echinacea or Coneflower

New Echinacea Cultivar

As an oldie to garden writing but a newbie to social media, I have discovered that Twitter can make life fun. It adds a new dimension to watching the Superbowl or the Grammy Awards but more importantly, Twitter grants you access to gardening experts and current information. There are several hour-long chats on Twitter related to some aspect of gardening, every day of the work week. This past Monday was a holiday so I was able to participate on #plantchat for the first time.

On Mondays, from 2:00 to 3:00 p.m. EST, Corona Tools hosts #plantchat, which is a great way to learn more about plants, gardening, and horticulture. Corona Tools (@CoronaTools) lines up a guest and a specific topic. The first few minutes are spent on introductions; people can elect to tweet where they live or their hardiness zone; most comment on the weather. I use tweetdeck to keep up with the conversation because it enables me to focus only on the plantchat conversation; not other tweets. Except for your internet connection, a twitter chat is free; all you have to do is sign in to Twitter and tweet using #plantchat. You don’t have to tweet; you can just read the conversation. With some chats, a transcript is available if you miss the live chat (as I have in the past when I am at the office). For #plantchat, @CoronaTools uses Storify to provide the recap.

This Monday’s guest was Rodale Institute (RI) and the topic was medicinal plants and herbs in the garden. I tweeted a question specifically to Rodale Institute about Echinacea. I knew the roots were beneficial in preventing or stopping a cold because I tried it years ago but wanted to know if the new cultivars on the market were equally effective. @RodaleInstitute first said: “General immune booster but most wait till symptoms start to take it. Prevention is best!” The person then responded: “Generally, it’s the Echinacea purpurea, other cultivars don’t carry the same quality at the same strength,” which is just as I had suspected but where else would I get such a quick answer from a leading expert? As people chatted, I learned the benefits of tulsi (holy basil) tea (reduces stress and anxiety) and the fact that comfrey and yaupon holly tea are anti-inflammatories. Someone recommended elderberry syrup for cough and cold, which led to another person chiming in that lemon balm makes a great tea and soothes the throat and stomach. Another person explained that stevia, an herb, can be used as a sweetener. I explained how I grow dill and cilantro in the cool months and someone said that cilantro provides Vitamin K, antioxidants, and phytonutrients. This was a paradigm shift; an herb such as cilantro may not be used for treating an illness but in addition to culinary benefits, it may act as a preventative.

Try out a Twitter chat, each are a little different but all are fun and educational.

Monday:          #plantchat, 2-3 pm; #gardenchat 9-10 pm

Tuesday:          #treechat 2-3 pm; #pollin8rchat 9-10 pm

Wednesday:     #landscapechat 2-3 pm; #seedchat 9-10 pm; #rosechat 9-10 pm

Thursday:        #herbchat 2-3 pm

Friday:             #groundchat 2-3 pm

Eastern Standard Time