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Katarina Ollikainen

Vectorworks, Inc Employee
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Posts posted by Katarina Ollikainen

  1. Hi, why don't you use the data tags instead of the built in tags in the plant tool and the landscape area tool? It is much better, you can place the tags in the viewport's annotation and they update if you make changes to the planting plans, just like the built in tags.

    You wouldn't have an issue with them showing up in the other viewport either.

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  2. Hi, any CAD program has a 'safe-zone' where you can work. If you're too far away from the internal origin (you should always have this visible so you can see where you are. Turn it on by going to Tools>Origin>Locate internal origin), otherwise the rounding of large numbers will play tricks with your geometry and the overall performance.

    There are several ways you can achieve this.

    If your file is NOT Georeferenced: Ensure all layers and classes are visible and selectable, select all (cmd A) and use the 'fit to objects' command to see everything. Then draw a circle around all the geometry (remember - ALL the geometry has to be included, even that tiny rogue text block fifty miles from the main drawing area). If the circle is more than 5km in radius, move your geometry closer to each other. Important - ensure that the centre of the circle is on a whole number (so the origin will end up on a whole x and y) - otherwise you'll never be able to precicely  align your model with somebody else's work if you export it.

    Next step is to go to Tools>Origin>Centre drawing on internal origin. This will do what it says on the box - the drawing will be centred on the internal origin. It will not affect your x and y coordinates.


    If your file is georeferenced, you have to set up the file correctly with the project origin lining up with the internal origin before you import anything. This is a vital step and should be included in the template setup.

    • Like 4
  3. Hi Laura, 

    The plant tool is really indispensable if you're creating plant schedules. The question is what you're going to use the schedule for.

    Normally when you create a plant schedule, you want to have the quantity of plants in the design and scheduled sizes (for quotes from the nursery, budget etc).

    If you want to show the distribution rate you can do the following (see image attached): 

    There are several different records for plants - In the record 'Plant Record' you'll find the records 'Quantity' and 'Latin name'.

    In the record 'Plant' you have the Distribution rate fields for 'Rate' and 'Rate Unit'. This will give you the distribution rates.


    Create your own worksheet (Tools > Report > Create Report) with only the fields you'd like to use instead of using the pre-made reports. When you have set up the report as you'd like it, save it in your user library or a workgroup library so you don't have to redo it for every project (or you can include it in your template).


    If you're using landscape areas for the planting (as commonly used for commercial projects), you can use the pre-created report called 'Landscape area - mass planting'. This will give you both the quantities and the distribution rates in the landscape area. You can just go in to the worksheet and remove the fields you don't want and then save it as above.


    If you find that there are too many fields for data in the Plant Style (under the 'Plant data' tab), then there is the possibility to make a bespoke set of only the information you'd like to have. However, this is a little bit more involved and it also means that you have to be very clear on what to do when you update or move from one computer to another. Everyone working with the Vectorworks file must have the same setup, otherwise it will not work. If this is what you'd like to setup, let me know and I'll send you the information.

    Screenshot 2020-07-28 at 09.38.55.png

  4. Hi, as plants are not supposed to grow on hardscape, they don't react on them. The only time I can see it being of use is if you have a gravel garden and you're using the hardscape to create the gravel. But as Jeff referred to, if the hardscape is part of a site model, the plants would automatically look for the site model and adjust to its level, both single plants and landscape areas.

    Can you explain in what situation you'd like to have the plants to grow out of the hardscape? Are you using the hardscape to create growing medium volumes?




    Screenshot 2020-07-27 at 16.05.03.png

  5. Hi Troy, 


    The DWG will be in scale, you just need to ask your surveyor if they're using meter or millimetre. (If you don't know, just import it once with meters and measure something known, like a door width. If it's wrong, delete the import and do it again but with millimetres. This is better than scaling the whole drawing). You shouldn't have to do any changes to it - surveys are usually very accurate.

    If you've already started working on your masterplan before the survey arrives, I'd recommend to draw out guidelines for door and window centres according to the DWG (Modify > Guides > Make guide) and then transfer (re-draw) your design to the 'surveyed' file - it is really hard to get things exact if you try to scale it. 

    The other really important thing to remember when importing a DWG is to ensure it 'lands' close to the internal origin. The simplest way to do this (unless you have set project coordinates) is to select the first choice in the import dialogue, 'Center first import, align all subsequent imports'. 

    • Like 1
  6. Hi Michal,


    Hope you're doing alright during these difficult and topsy-turvy times.


    Regarding your first post:


    You can turn off the existing tree tags by classify the tag in the Existing tree tool preferences and then turn off the class.


    To change the units in the data tags from mm to meter - you can do this in the 'Define tag Field' window. When you add a new field to the tag and you've chosen the parameter name; right under that field you have a units dropdown menu as well. Change from Document Units to meter, decide on the Precision, add your preferred suffix and you're good to go.


    Hope this helps.


    Regarding your second post, can you give me a bit more information on the issue? I don't quite understand how you're tagging the existing trees - normally you'd have one tag for each of the trees as they all have unique ID numbers. Or are you referring to normal plants styles?

    • Like 1
  7. Yes, you can have several different looks to the 2D and 3D for the same plant style. Just create the plant with the 3D mesh graphics and then go in to 'edit 3D graphics' and add the Image Prop (the easiest is to copy one from another plant that you like). Then you just have to create different classes for the different looks - that's how you control what is visible.

    If you want to, you can have several seasonal Image props for the same plant, just make sure you give them different classes.


    This way you can then use the same plant style for everything from sketchy concepts to final renderings (instead of having different trees for different purposes) and you don't have to worry about counting 'the same tree' several times in a worksheet. Draw it once...

  8. Hi Steve, are you using the data tags or the landscape area's tags? If you use the LA's own tags, they'll take on whatever setting you have on the area you're 'dropping from'.

    If you use the data tags, they'll stay where you've put them.

    Does this help?

  9. Hi Steve, no, unfortunately they're gone. The plants are associated to the landscape area through the Plant Style name (not the Botanical name). If you change the style name, you break 'the chain'.

    Do you have a safety copy of the file since before you changed the name? If so, open that version as well, remove the landscape areas from the newer file, copy the old ones over and you'll have the landscape areas with the all the plants back. When you copy them over, you'll get the prompt 'A format named "Additional Plant Record" already exists in the current document. What do you want to do?' Tick the 'Replace the Format in the current document' and click ok.

    The landscape areas are now back in their original form and if you're recalculating the schedules, they'll be back there as well.


    The other way you can do the same thing (if the affected landscape areas all contain the same mixture) is to create a single landscape area with the correct mix, then select all the 'wrong' areas, and use the eyedropper tool to transfer it (the eyedropper tool has to have the 'Plug-in Parameters' selected). Recalculate the schedules.

  10. Mixed hedging doesn't work when using the plant tool. The idea with the plant tool is that it only places one kind of plant at the time, either in single mode or in a poly-vertex/edge or array mode. This is the nature of the tool.

    To place a mixture of plants, you have the Landscape area tool. This is a powerful tool, where you can set up mixes of plants you use all the time (either for planting beds or, as in this case, hedges). This tool works the way you say that you want to work - you create a geometry, either directly with the tool or by converting existing geometry, and you then tell it what plants you want it to contain and it will then give you the numbers.


    An example:

    If you say that you want to plant a mixed hedge with staggered rows and you use 5 plants per linear meter (per row), what you have to do is calculate how wide that double row would be, create a landscape area in this width and populate it with the mixture of your choice.

    In the example below, I've first created a hedge according to this specification (as a comparison), then drawn a polygon to the size you want the hedge and converted it to a landscape area, in which I have put in several different species. (You can also see that it would go 25 plants in a m2 if you used the 5/lm size).

    This way you also avoid having the individual plants showing. You can use the plant line on the landscape area to make the edge 'wiggly', and use any fill you'd like. Here I've just used a simple gradient, but you could use anything your practice normally use for hedging. (If you'd prefer, you can create yo your own line style specific for hedging and use that instead of the plant line in the landscape area).

    If it would help you, I'll gladly send over the standard widths for different hedge units that I've collected over the years. Then you only need to use the double line polygon tool, set to the width needed to create your hedge area and then convert it to a landscape area.

    This is a very effective way to work when making a lot of hedges- you create the hedge mixture for the landscape area once, saving it and then apply it to all the areas you want it on. Once you have created one area with your mix of plants, you can then select all the other areas and use the eye dropper tool to fill them all in one go. After that, remember to save the Landscape area mix so you can use it in your next project.

    Screenshot 2019-11-19 at 15.29.08.png

    Screenshot 2019-11-19 at 15.29.55.png

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