I was looking at this identification question. The identification request includes a picture of a nondescript seedling growing at the edge of a pot. It has been inactive for more than a year, with no additional information supplied in response to queries in the comments.

Some seedlings are readily identifiable, particularly if you know what has been growing or has been planted in a location, or if the seedling has a distinctive characteristics. Without that information, seedling identification becomes more problematic. Leaf morphologies in seedlings can be radically different than those seen in mature plants. Some mature plants can only be confidently identified by their flowers and fruit.

In such a case as this, where there is no response to the requests for additional information, should the question be flagged as too broad?


1 Answer 1


Not quite.

I was going to think about this. And then I realized that the answer is actually pretty easy to figure.

When you see a question like this, and some time has gone by, comment on it and ask the OP if they could update the photo.

Plants grow, and more certainty is established the longer that a plant is growing. So perhaps, asking for a new picture is the right thing to do. Accompany your comment with a vote-to-close vote or flag for a little extra umph, but generally, a comment asking for additional photography at a different stage of the plant should be our go to choice here.

  • Yes, that would be my preference, but the OP has not updated their question yet. One person asked for an update a month later. The latest comment requesting more information was this August.
    – S. Albano
    Sep 28, 2013 at 14:33
  • then yeah closure's the option here I think.
    – wax eagle
    Sep 28, 2013 at 14:37
  • Too broad is probably the wrong close reason; maybe Unclear what you're asking or a custom close reason along the lines of my suggestion here
    – Niall C. Mod
    Sep 30, 2013 at 14:55

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