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Field botany

Dr M’s little Spring flower quiz!

Dr M regularly goes wild on the University of Reading award-winning campus, especially now as Spring is bursting out all around with beautiful wild flowers. Dr M is also very excited that Fascination of Plants day (18 May) will soon be with us and so for a little spring flower test Dr M offers images of seven common wild flowers from the University campus used
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Dr M’s Marvellous Mosses: Introduction

Dr M is particularly fond of bryophytes and the following described two days spent with his students on the MSc Plant Diversity and MSc SISS at University of Reading getting to know these wonderful little green things intimately!


Dr M welcomes a new MSc student cohort to the joys of botany!

Dr M says: It’s that time of year again! Last year’s University of Reading MSc Plant Diversity students (class of 2016 pictured above) are just about finishing their dissertations and we are already wishing them well as they get ready to move on to botanical pastures new, while the class of 2017 are soon to be on their way to Reading for a new exciting
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Do you know your yellow clovers?

So you’re walking through the grass and at the edge, where it’s all trampled, there’s this yellow clover, or is it, and is it only one? Well in Britain we have at least four common yellow flowered small to medium clover-like plants. Although they all have trifoliate leaves (three leaflets) they are not called clover, at least the commonest common names are not clover
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Forget Brexit, here is Dr M’s 52% leaves quiz!

OK, so amidst all the hype, the story telling, the agony and the extacy, it’s great to know that we can still rely on plants to pull us through! So in the spirit of Brexit, Dr M offers his 52% leaves quiz, fifty-two of the finest British, European and International leaves for your botanical edification and welcome distraction! These 52 leaves were all found in
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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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A life-time of reasons to be cheerful about botany: Phil Gates

Dr M is proud and delighted to present this latest in this series by botanist and country diarist Phil Gates who Dr M “met” (the two have never actually met!) on Twitter. This virtual meeting goes to show  just how significant the internet has become as a virtual meeting place, a discussion forum and a vector for sharing and spreading the botanical word! And beautiful
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Dr M’s in-Hyde Park spot test – the answers!

Have you tried Dr M’s spot test from the BES/EFL workshop in Hyde Park? If not check it out here have a go then come back for the answers! Check the pictures against the answers below, give yourself 2 marks if you got the answer correct. If you didn’t quite get the answer correct but were part way there you can still get a mark,
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Hit me with your EFL plant tests!

Recently Dr M and colleague Alastair Culham gave a presentation on creative approaches to teaching plant ID to the BES/EFL workshop in Hyde Park – as Alastair Culham has said in his account of this event (here), “…the audience didn’t know what hit them – two plant ID tests in 30 minutes!” Regular visitors will already know this and you can see Dr M’s summary here.
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Botanical hello’s and goodbye’s at the University of Reading!

Dr M says: It’s that time of year again! Last year’s University of Reading MSc Plant Diversity students (class of 2015 pictured above) are just about finishing their dissertations and we are already wishing them well as they get ready to move on to botanical pastures new, while the class of 2016 are soon to be on their way to Reading for a new exciting
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