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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Dr M talks botany on Junction 11 Radio (JASS – Just Another Science Show)

So, there’s a new buzz at the University of Reading, it’s a new science podcast and it goes by the name of “Just Another Science Show” – JASS for short and it’s presented as part of Junction 11 Radio at the University by current PhD students Chanida Fung and Matt Greenwell. The concept is delightfully simple – research students and staff are interviewed about
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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!)


Botanical University Challenge 2019!

YOUR STARTER FOR TEN: The first ever UK Botanical University Challenge took place at Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, hosted by James Wong, on 10th March 2016 you can read more about it here.   FINGERS ON BUZZERS!   We are now getting very close to the second Challenge which takes place at the University of Reading on Wednesday 20th February 2019 and is the
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Dr M’s common grass quiz

It’s no secret that Dr M is raving potty about Poaceae so imagine his delight when he saw the new and wonderful @Wildflowerhour also getting into the Poaceous groove with their #grasschallenge! This time of year (June) is truly wondrous for Poaceae (but not hay fever sufferers!) as the vegetative shoots spring into action and come alive with flowering inflorescences bearing those strange yet magical
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White flowered trees in the hedgerow 3: The Elder Tree (Sambucus nigra)

Earlier this year Dr M wrote posts on two beautiful white flowered shrubs or small trees common in the British countryside and which tend to bloom in sequence from spring into summer.  Blackthorn (Prunus spinosa) starts in April, followed by Hawthorn (Crategus monogyna – flowering in May. The final plant in this trio is Elder (Sambucus nigra) usually flowering from June into July, but
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