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Description of how the plant grow function works

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Is there a detailed description of how the plant growing function works in Home Designer Architectural?  

 

I would like to make a customized plant and customize the lifecycle growth of a plant and use information from the web to describe the starting size and size at maturity.  

 

The Plant Image Specification shows a height range in the "from" and a height range for  the "to", the starting age and age at maturity, but I am not sure that is where all the growth information goes.

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try the reference Manual , it has more info than the online help , there is usually a link under "help" to download it if you haven't already

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Most dialogs even have a "Help" button located near the lower right to quickly access Help on that particular dialog.

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I looked for all the information on the plant grow function, but I still have some issues.  

 

1.  The plant "from" and "to have a range, say, for example 16' to 24'.  One plant "Downy serviceberry Juneberry, Shadblow, Sarvis Tree" has a "from" and "to" that are the same (16' to 24').  The height at maturity is a single number (45').  Does the plant growth come from just the mature height somehow?  Are the "from" and "to" figures used in the plant growth calculation at all?

 

2.  The "Downy serviceberry Juneberry, Shadblow, Sarvis Tree" example shows growth, but if the plant growth slider is returned to its initial 0 position, the tree does not return to the original height.  The other plants appear to return to their original height.  I have to close and reopen the file to get the original height back again.

 

3.  Explain why there is a range for the "from" and "to".  It appears that there is a "range within a range".  The height at maturity in my example is 45 ft, but the "from" is 16' to 24' and the "to" is 16' to 24'.  There are some examples where the height at maturity is LESS than the "from and "to" figures.  How are you to interperate that?

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There isn't a lot of info around on this ,personally I don't do landscape stuff so never looked into it but there was a thread on the old forum about similar issues , the last poster was using 2014 and had the same questions as you . but didn't get any help, I would suggestion copy and pasting the above to tech Support , they will be able to tell you and then you can hopefully post back here so we can all learn...

 

found it on the old forum

 

http://hometalk.homedesignersoftware.com/showthread.php?1111-Growing-Trees&highlight=plant+growth

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I put this question to the support people.  They said that the "to" and "from" as well as the other items on the Plant Information sheet are used for the search plant feature alone, nothing to do with the plant growth feature.  

 

So, the plant chooser feature answers the reason for the "from" and the "to" as that being used in the search function.

HOWEVER, I reiterated the question to them as to what data is used for the actual "grow" function and why my example plant grows from one height to another, but did not return to the original height when I slid the slider back to 0? Why did it get "stuck" on my example plant so it would not return to the original height?  Also, why did one of the example plants have the same "from" and "to".

Also, I would think that the plant grow feature would have to have 2 points to define the growth "line".  An initial fixed height listed (I assume at time "0" for the example image) and a height at maturity in order to make the plant grow feature work. In other words, two points each made up of an age and height to define a line defining a starting age/height and a mature age/height? I see the point representing the mature age/height, but what is the 0 age height? It may be buried in the image, but it would be good to see it listed.

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thx for the feedback Eric at least we know a little more now..

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I got this answer back from the support people:
 
The Grow All Plants feature isn't designed to return a plant image back to its originating value, however, we were able to check through our database of feature requests and see that this ability, and several other improvements to the feature, has been suggested in the past. 

The more requested a feature is, the higher it moves up in terms of priority, so we've added another note with your description under the request as well.
 
I answered back:
 
The interesting thing is, all the other plants but the maple DID return to their original size.  I can send you the file and you can try it yourself to see, if you wish.
 
And yes, I would heartily suggest that as a feature.  How else are you to do a cut and try of differing plants to see what you have to do to make them fit correctly.
 
This plant grow feature was the thing that BLEW ME AWAY and made me have to have this software.  It should, however work back and forth so you can try various plants and see how they will work in a setting.  The fact that it "sort of works" means that the original intention of someone was that you could slide the grow slider back and forth.  It should also NOT DISAPPEAR AFTER PRESSING THE OK.  You should be able to slide it back and forth to see the plants fill out the area and allow you to change their position and try it again with the slider staying on-screen by using a "confirm" instead of an "OK" or "close".  The confirm would allow the change to execute  without the slider box going away.
 
If there is interest in the plant grow feature and have it work like I describe or similarly, please put your vote in.  

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you should add this to the suggestions forum Eric and then people can give it a    +1 me too :)

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I took your advice Kbird1.  It is now in the suggestion area.  I sure hope people give it a thumbs up, because it is one of the more interesting features of Home Designer.

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I have done some more testing with the grow plants function and am disapointed with how far it is developed in comparison to other features that are represented in the Home Designer programs.  I guess I am one of the few that have shown any strong interest in this feature.  Seems too bad.  

 

If there is anyone out there that has worked on this with any long term experience, I would sure like to have some feedback. 

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I searched the old user forum and found that the concern I have about how the plant grow function works has existed without change since 2006!!  I can only find one thread that shows concern about how this operates.  Wow.  Is there such little interest in the Plant Grow function that it would have such poor representation and activity in the Home Designer User Forum?  I would think this potential feature would be a great hit.  Is it possible that people that have tried it found that it does not work as they expect and just abandon it with no further effort?  If I were a landscape designer, this would be an important way to win new clients.

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I have done more study on this growing issue and created a spreadsheet that gives some insite to what makes this algorithm tick.  It appears that the grow function does not care what you set the initial plant image size to, it is using some internal initial size information that you can't view or change (unless someone can show me what I am missing).  It uses the internal size and the starting age you specify to create a grow function.  I have attached a PDF of the spreadsheet I made.  

 

If anyone knows how we can access the stored initial plant size, I would like to know it.

Plant grow analysis(6.9.14).xlsx.pdf

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