About us and the project

Many of us came together in April 2021, to join Zachary Leahan in this Code for Philly Project. Some of us joined on a little later on, but whether here for a short time or a long time or somewhere in between, we were all on fire to get this built in order to help gardeners from novice to expert find native plants to put into their gardens. For many of us, it is an app we had always wanted, for others, it was a chance to learn a lot about native plants. The project’s original name was the PA-Wildflower Selector. This initial idea that began with Zachary creating a Tableau project to utilize a database he had found, morphed over many months into the responsive web application you find here today.

  • The team
  • The tools
  • The method
  • Acknowledgements
  • The team

    The team consisted of 3 UX Designers fresh from bootcamp/flex programs, a seasoned developer, a new developer, a technical CPA, and a data engineer. So many varied backgrounds and side interests in this bunch. What a great team to work with.

    Project Sponsor & Data Guru

    Zach Leahan is a Senior Manager within Product Development at PwC Digital. Zach looks for opportunities to leverage his tech skills outside of work for the common good. Zach is an avid native plant gardener to support wildlife, especially birds and bees.

    Photo of Zach Leahan

    Design - UX/UI

    Cristina Zanoni is a Brazilian UX Designer based in Philadelphia. Empathy, curiosity, and inclusion play a significant role in her day-to-day life. She volunteers with @ibelongphilly to increase immigrant visibility. When not working, she loves walking around discovering art hidden around Philly. Reach her at cristinazanoni.com.

    Photo of Cristina Zanoni

    Design - UX/UI

    Anne-Marie Lloyd is a UX Designer with CapTech with a background in market research. She's an advocate for accessible and ethical product design, and uses her cross-disciplinary knowledge to bring fresh perspectives to her design work. In her free time she enjoys skiing, hiking, and playing with her rescue dog. Drop her a line and check out her work at annemarielloyd.com.

    Photo of Anne-Marie Lloyd

    Design - UX/UI

    Roxanne G is a full-time UX/UI designer with Assetworks, LLC and a freelance WordPress website creator who is also an avid gardener, crafter, and mother of 2. Roxanne believes technology should be used for the greater good; to serve humanity and the planet. Check out her work at roxanneg.design.

    Photo of Roxanne G

    Development / Code Engineer

    Tom Boutell is the CTO of Apostrophe Technologies. As a longtime developer he enjoys the mentorship aspect of his job most, as well as software architecture and hands-on programming. He's fond of classic video games, matcha lattes and pedaling around Philadelphia. You can drop him a line at boutell.dev or on Twitter.

    Photo of Tom Boutell

    Development / Code Engineer

    Ella Heron is a sound artist, educator, software engineer, and aspiring agrarian living on occupied Lenapehoking. She wants to cultivate interdependence and put chestnut trees back on Chestnut Street. Check out her work at diaphanous.cloud.

    Photo of Ella Heron

    Data Engineer

    Anthony Hopkins is a budding data engineer/scientist and amateur baker. When he isn't trying out a new recipe for scones or muffins, he's building his knowledge of data. Anthony is particularly interested in data justice and the growing conversations around biases in data algorithms.

    Photo of Anthony Hopkins

    Development / Code Engineer

    Kio is an aspiring Librarian and definitely not a bona fide city nymph. Kio currently works in IT, tech, and various customer support capacities, and absolutely cannot charm privateers to lose their stolen goods. In Kio’s spare time they enjoy acting, playing piano, and never shape-shifting.

    Photo of Kio P

    Data Specialist

    Charles Leahan is an aspiring data scientist, self-taught programmer and math lover. He also enjoys lifting, trail running and plays too much online chess.

    Photo of Charles Leahan

    The tools

    Here is a short list of the tools used to keep us organized and get things going.

    • Notion
    • Figma
    • Slack
    • Maze
    • Github
    • Javascript
    • Vue
    • Node.js
    • MongoDB

    The method

    • We began meeting April 12, 2021
    • Many discussions and sketches ensued
    • A Survey was created and sent out to many Facebook groups an subreddits to help define what functionality would be included in the MVP
    • An analysis of the data was completed and functionality was determined
    • Wireframes were crafted in Figma
    • A competitive analysis was completed and existing plant finders were analyzed
    • The database was discussed and explained
    • A style guide was decided upon
    • A high fidelity prototype was completed
    • A Maze test was completed by testers from the facebook groups and subreddits
    • Many iterations of hi-fi prototype design were completed
    • The responsive mobile-first website design was coded
    • The project was launched on May 7th, 2022 in time for Spring planting season in Pennsylvania.