We get a fair number of questions asking for off-site resources. Some recent examples:
- Competitions and lectures for garden designers
- A website for keeping track of my houseplants
- What good websites which list the requirements of various plants?
- Plant identification keys dataset
- What are some resources for region-dependent planting schedule/calender?
These types of questions are typically off-topic across all Stack Exchange sites because Stack Exchange aims to build a compendium of knowledge in a given site's topic. It does not aim to be a collection of links to other places on the Internet (except where those links are citations or references to support the posts here). In practice, they also tend to become a magnet for spam over time.
When I went looking for a policy for these questions, the closest I could find was section 2.1 of Teaching a man to fish, garden, and ... shop. :
- Questions asking for vendors for plants X or materials Y, etc., will be explicitly off-topic. It will be closed outright and possibly deleted.
For reference, Software Recommendations Stack Exchange has well written guidelines for asking and answering this type of question:
- What is required for a question to contain “enough information”?
- What is required for an answer to be high quality?
So, do we want these questions in the first place? If we allow them, what are the minimal standards for quality that we should allow?