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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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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 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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Possibly the youngest botanist in the country!

Last year Dr M posted botanical selfies here from two young botanists, George Garnett and Ryan Clark, this year sees the posting of a selfie from Reuben Nebbett-Blades who at just twelve years old could easily qualify as the youngest botanist in the country! And he’s certainly a dedicated field botanist this young chap, into the serious groups of plant groups like sedges and
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Learn sedge ID with Dr M at SLBI London – 18th October 2015!

OK, Listen up plant lovers and botanophiles alike!  Stuff like this really doesn’t happen that often, I mean, when did you last have a chance to attend a Dr M Botanical  course?  Like never, or at least oh so rarely!  We are talking hen’s teeth, we really are! So, come on down to London town and join the botanical love and joy at Dr M’s
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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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