Tuesday, 20 February 2018
A+ R A-





Text by Richard Johnson
Page Composition by Kes Winwood




The IHS and the entire hibiscus world owes an enormous debt of gratitude to Joseph Dimino for his major contributions. He has spent untold hours of work in developing the IHS web site and in particular TGHL "The Global Hibiscus Library" and its many features including the IHS/Dimino On Line Registration system. Joseph has been suffering from a long term illness for many years. As therapy to occupy his mind, combined with his passion for hibiscus, he took over from Richard Johnson as the IHS web master. He built upon what Dick had begun, and made a number of improvements to the web site. However, the real legacy was his development of TGHL and its many features, which are a completely different addition to the IHS web site. This legacy was developed over many years, with Joseph having spent literally thousands of hours in its creation. It amounts to a gift to the entire global hibiscus community, in the form of features freely accessible by anyone on the internet.


TGHL is the database maintained by the IHS.With such a major work there are always things in need of optimization, which are still being undertaken where possible. TGHL originated with the public domain information contained in the international hibiscus registry, itself a compendium of the nomenclature works by many people over several decades, particularly Chris Noble, the International Cultivar Registration Authority Registrar "ICRAR" at that time. The international hibiscus registry is maintained by the Australian Hibiscus Society as the International Cultivar Registration Authority "ICRA" under the auspices of the International Society of Horticultural Sciences "ISHS", working under the United Nations charter for nomenclature. Through the courtesy of the American Hibiscus Society, Joseph obtained permission to use the photos in their collection.


Thus, TGHL became a photo driven database, but it actually goes far beyond that by providing a number of very useful features:


1) Search Engine: it has a highly serviceable search function that permits anyone to find any specific category or characteristic in TGHL, from a cultivar, its hybridizer, to filtering for size, color, etc - essentially any single bit of information contained in TGHL.


2) Genealogical Tree: it permits anyone with a few clicks to find the parentage of a given cv back four generations, including photos if they exist in TGHL.


3) Pending Registrations, and Registered and Non Registered cvs are shown in TGHL.


4) Hard Copy: Anyone can make a copy of the current TGHL data, by creating their own Excel Database print out using a feature integrated into TGHL.


5) On-Line registration. With the back log of incomplete registrations by both the Australian and American hibiscus societies, Dick conjectured that what the world needed was a semi automated on-line registration system. It was considered a pipe dream by many, but working closely with Joseph over many months, indicating what was needed, he made it happen in the form of the current IHS/Dimino on-line registration system. It is instantaneous with the only delay being the time required by the ICRAR to authorize the registration. However, the work of the ICRAR is greatly facilitated in that the new name is already pre approved, assuming TGHL has all of the information contained in the International Cultivar Registry. This system is linked with the ICRAR who automatically receives submissions for approval, and he in turn only need click on the appropriate box in that submission to automatically send the approval to TGHL system.


This is how it works:


A. one logs on to the system and registers with a user name and password.


B. they propose a cv name, which is either authorized or, if already taken, requires requesting a different name.


C. they fill out the required information indicated by an (*) asterisk, including a photo of the cv to be registered and it's parents (unnecessary if they are already in TGHL) and as much of the supplemental information as possible.


D. they click the submission button at the end at which time all the information is automatically entered into TGHL. At the same time the new registration is automatically sent to the ICRAR. If the new registration is approved, the registration information and photos remain in TGHL and the registration is complete. If declined by the ICRAR, all the information and photos from that submission are automatically removed and the applicant is informed of the reason as to why the registration was declined.


Some interesting features and how they work:


A. One can use the search engine to find all cvs registered by a given hybridizer (enter the hybridizers name "last / first, e.g., Johnson Richard, check the radio button "hybridizer" and click on search). This can be tricky as one needs to know how the hybridizers name is registered, i.e., Joe Ludick is listed as Ludick Joe and Roberta (Hint: find a cv by a given hybridizer and it will list how the hybridizer is registered). Once the list is generated, at the bottom of the page one can click on "Comparative Analysis", and each registered cv appears one after the other. It can take time, since for some hybridizers, hundreds of cvs are being displayed.


B. One can search for all the progeny of registered cvs used as a parent "mother = pod" or "father = pollen" (enter the name, i.e., Georgia's Pearl, check the radio button "mother" or " father", click on search) and all the progeny of that parent are listed. This is where "Comparative Analysis" really shines as one can compare the progeny of that parent one after the other.


C. One can even search for a given cross, i.e., Georgia's Pearl x Fourth Of July (enter the cross as per previous example, check the radio button "select cross" and click on search). This is again a case where "Comparative Analysis" really shines as one can compare every sibling of that particular cross.


D. At any point when a cv photo is shown, clicking on the photo opens up the genealogical tree showing its parentage back four generations.



The IHS web site, and specifically TGHL, is currently the most advanced tool available to the hibiscus world. It is the result of a society at work, where members, alone or together, contribute to build upon what has been done before them to create a better future. Joseph Dimino is honored now and will be remembered long after he is gone for this masterful, major contribution to the hibiscus world.