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2017 Forum year in review


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2017 Forum year in review

As your forum administrator, my stated goal for the forum for the year of 2017 was to provide long term stability for this forum so as to keep all the fantastic information and photos that exist here available to the world.  I am very happy with how we progressed towards that goal this year.  We did not find a new platform for our information but we did lower the monthly price to keep it with Invision and we spread the burden of that price among a number of the members.  Thank you again to all of you who stepped up and sponsored a month of maintenance fees for the price of $20 per month.  Your support is appreciated!  I see no reason we cannot provide another year of forum stability in 2018 by proceeding with this same system.  I will post a 2018 donation chart next week – and I have already received payment for several of 2018’s months!

Another achievement in 2017 was getting Invision to update our out-of-date software and that progressed without incident or data loss.

The numerical count of our membership went up this year, but many more than joined left our ranks during the year so the membership number is deceptive.  Going forward I will gradually strike from the membership list those members who have not visited with us in several years. Likewise posts to the forum are down for the year.  Both of these developments are not unique to our forum – the Facebook ant-plant groups have the same issues.  What is up with this!  Has the cat ants got your tongues!

Please, all of you, continue to share your information, insights and photos here and also respond to the newbies who seek our expertise with their questions.  Remember, there was a time you were seeking the same information.

As always, I welcome your input and comments, either here or to my email at frankinmi@aol.com

Frank Omilian, Forum Administrator

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Thanks as aways Frank for doing all the heavy lifting here since inheriting the forum from previous founder/administrator.

I have long been puzzled why such an image-rich and plant family-diverse forum has so little participation after quite a strong start under Andreas. There is certainly keen interest in myrmecophytes as is evidenced by the volume of new publications and a small but robust market in antferns, hydnophytines, ant-dischidias and ant-orchids, but very few people seem to be interested in posting. There were previous arguments made that the "competing" Facebook ant plant fora were sucking all the oxygen/enthusiasm  out of the community, but I see that engagement on both Todd Kramer and Derrick Rowe's FB pages have also tailed off substantially from volumes of postings last year.

In any case, a lot of interesting happenings in ant plant land, not the least of which is that all five genera of hydnophytines are now in cultivation in the EU and the US (I would guess Japan and Singapore as well, but unsure) and that a lot of very desirable "new" species have found their way into cultivation over the past 18 months. A number of these species will see very limited releases into commercial markets in the US and elsewhere over the next year.

In addition, I have been working on sourcing two attractive Peruvian antferns that are not in cultivation yet and hope to obtain living material sometime in 2018 to bring the number of myrmecophytic Microgramma spp. in cultivation to six.

All in all, the very best of times for growers to be interested in the cultivation of myrmecophytes! Hopefully, we can restart the forum in January with a new round of engaged members from all over the world.



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