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A Pint of Poaceae hits #WildflowerHour!

At last the wonderful botanical outreach project #wildflowerhour has hit Dr M’s fav family – the Poaceae with the #grasschallenge for Sunday 23rd June 2019! To celebrate, Dr M popped into his garden and plucked some grasses from his Poaceae-rich #nomow lawn. Without really trying, Dr M returned with a big bunch of grasses and then set about trying to photograph them in the
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Social media to the rescue!

It is not uncommon to hear about common plant sightings from botanists via social media these days but on 16th June I received a tweet from a past Reading botany student concerning a rare plant spotted in Reading, this was a Lizard Orchid (Himantoglossum hircinum) which had been photographed on a busy roadside verge. The Lizard Orchid is a very rare and legally protected
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Fascination with smelly plants!

Fascination of Plants Day is an International celebration of plants, it is a whole series of events all about plants which happens every second year.  The aim is to get as many people as possible around the world fascinated by plants and enthused about the importance of plant science for agriculture, horticulture, forestry and the production of plant-based non-food products such as paper, timber,
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Whiteknights Cedar: A Golden Anniversary Ale!

A golden anniversary cedar-infused ale celebrating Reading Botany 2019 has just been produced and is available at University of Reading’s Park House bar and at the Reading Botany 2019 events! The idea of an anniversary ale was the brainchild of Dr M who, in the summer of 2018, noticed bespoke beers occasionally being produced for conferences, anniversaries or other celebrations and he thought why
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So, Why are plants smelly then?

As part of the University of Reading British Science Week outreach activities Dr M and colleagues Oli Wilson, Alex Dean and Katie Cooper hosted an event for local families addressing this aromatic question!  As Dr M pointed out to the attendees, this event also forms part of Reading Botany 2019, a year-long series of events celebrating 50 years botany masters teaching at Reading and over
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Why are plants smelly?

Ever trod on a plant, caught a whiff of its smell and wondered: why do plants smell? Well, wonder no more, Dr M has just the thing for you: the University of Reading “Why are plants smelly” outreach project – part of University of Reading’s (UoR) contribution to British Science Week (March 2019) and 5th International “Fascination of Plants Day” (May 2019). These events also
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Botanical University Challenge 2019!

Your starter for ten and no conferring: what is the closest score line you can imagine for Botanical University Challenge?!  Well read on to find out! On Wednesday 20 February 2019 the second ever Botanical University Challenge in the UK was held at the University of Reading.  Six intrepid botanical teams travelled to Reading for a botanical contest in the style of the well-known
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Botanical University Challenge: a precedent from Thailand!

Quite recently Dr M was fascinated to discover that the UK Botanical University Challenge, originally devised by Dr M and John Warren back in 2016, has a very esteemed tropical precedent. Dr M was chatting to new PhD student Mr. Nattanon Meeprom working with Alastair Culham in the School of Biological Sciences at University of Reading.  Very soon Dr M was amazed to learn
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Plant Blindness – A Video Essay by Benedict Furness

Dr M says: The critical concept of Plant Blindness has featured on drmgoeswild.com before, for example, Dawn Saunder’s post in the botanical selfie series in March 2015 and Dr M’s account of his lecture tour of Japan in May 2018.  The recent video essay by Bath Spa student Benedict Furness featured here came to Dr M’s attention when a link from Benedict’s tutor at Bath Spa University
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The Twelve Days of Botany!

It’s time to revisit this Dr M classic – the Twelve Days of Botanical Christmas! (First broadcast in December 2014!)