Dr M’s common grass quiz

It’s no secret that Dr M is raving potty about Poaceae! This time of year (early June) is 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 spikelets, there is a freshness and a magic to this Poaceous time for sure! And it’s a great season to start
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Dr M’s 30 Days Wild 2016!

Dr M has been going wild about plants and nature even way before he launched drmgoeswild.com in April 2013, and so naturally he is delighted to see that The Wildlife Trusts are repeating their 30 Days Wild campaign for June 2016: As the people at the WLT say: “Feel happier, healthier and more connected to nature by doing something wild every day for thirty days this June. No matter
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Dr M’s Lizard Botanical Quiz: The Answers!

Did you have a go at Dr M’s Botany quiz from the botanical hotspot that is the Lizard in Cornwall? If not try it out here and come back to check the answers below. Below are the images of the seventy species with the Latin names, check the table below that for Families and vernacular names: # Family Latin and Common Name 1. Apiaceae Crithmum maritimum (Rock Samphire)
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Dr M’s Lizard Botanical Quiz 2016!

Dr M and students on the MSc Plant Diversity at the University of Reading have just (May 2016) returned from the annual botanical study trip to the botanical hotspot and Important Plant Area that is the Lizard District of Cornwall. The trip included amazing botanical walks along the stunning Cornish coastline including Kennack Sands to Cadgwith Cove, Lizard Head to Caerthyllian Cove and Kynance Cove. During
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Spring is: more than 50 shades of green!

Did you notice this last weekend (mid April) was the first real sign that the countryside is awakening from its winter slumbers and the trees are coming into glorious leaf? Certainly Dr M saw that it was so in and around Reading and across into Wales. That transition – from the starkly beautiful bare twigs on tree and hedge to the emerging haze green
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Dr M talks more rubbish: brownfield botany answers!

Did you have a go at Dr M’s brownfield botany quiz? If not try it out here and come back to check the answers below. Post-industrial brownfield land is home to a host of colonising species both native and non-native species.  Amongst the non-natives are many non-invasive naturalised species as well as some more pernicious alien invasive species, several of which are listed on Schedule 9 of
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Dr M talks rubbish!

Perish the thought that Dr M would ever talk rubbish, but recently a survey in the Dagenham area lead to this close encounter of a post-industrial kind, replete with the results of endless fly-tipping, accompanied by a diversity of ruderal plants which you commonly find colonising such places, as well as one or two less common! Below, Dr M shares images of twenty of the
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Dr M’s Travelodge botany quiz flowers in the moss: the answers!

Did you have a go at Dr M’s flowers in the moss botany quiz from his stop over in the Crewe Travelodge recently?  If not try it out here and come back to check the answers below. Between Dr M’s hotel and the stream was a mossy lawn with shed loads of Rhytidiadelphus squarrosus (Springy Turf Moss) but here and there were some other plants.
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Travelodge botany quiz!

Dr M says: Botany is everywhere, yes even at Travelodge! Dr M had the pleasure of staying at a Travelodge near Crewe recently. Nice comfy bed and a pleasant view across a meandering stream to a fragment of wet woodland with Salix fragilis (Crack-willow). But be warned: the view will be quite different once summer approaches, but more of that later! Dr M had
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Happy St Patricks Day! But what is Shamrock?

Happy St Patrick’s Day! According to Irish legend, the druids in Ireland looked at the Shamrock as a sacred plant because its leaves formed a triad and the number three (or “tree” in Irish*) was a mystical number in the Celtic religion. But what, exactly and botanically, is Shamrock? Is it one of these? Or these? Well according to a 1988 survey of Irish people
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