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Dr M’s students create a living botanical glossary

Twenty-six botanists from Dr M’s Vegetation Survey and Assessment MSc class have produced the first ever living botanical glossary known to science (unless, of course, you know better?!).

The brainchild of Dr M, the twenty-six Masters students were each allocated commonly used botanical terms and then headed out onto the University of Reading campus to fetch back living plant material to illustrate each term in their own individual style.

The whole living glossary of fifty botanical terms were laid out in alphabetical order in the laboratory for inspection, edification and learning.

A living glossary is, by its nature, an ephemeral work and to extend its life and value a photographic record was taken and some examples are shown below.

This is  the first draft of a larger ongoing project and, for example, later work will refine this glossary, perhaps to create a video glossary?!

Watch this space for more botanical inspiration and innovation from Dr M and his beloved students!



  • Peter Williams

    It was good fun and very very useful to see physical examples of botanical terms – some of which aren’t that easy to grasp just by reading a glossary.

    • DrM

      Yes, I think it worked well. It would also be fun to have short video clips of each student showing their living botanical term and explaining them. With video you could have a look all round the specimen if needed. Something for another time!

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