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Tue 8th May 2018
Courses & Workshops
Spring Grass ID
An introduction to the identification of the commoner Grasses (Poaceae) for those with little or no experience of this group. Grasses are extremely useful botanically as they can tell you much about a site ecologically. Unfortunately, they do not have large obvious ‘flowery’ bits so many people are put off attempting to identify them. By observing those characters which help identify each species we will be able to understand why a species is what it is; in time we will also learn short-cuts as to how to recognise individual species.
Time: 10am to 4pm
Venue: The Haven next to Three Hagges Wood-Meadow
Cost: £40 (plus booking fee)

Course Overview

The course will cover plant structures, identification techniques, use of keys (in particular Hubbard’s Grass Key – updated and revised by Arvensis Ecology) and what habitats the individual species occur in. Use of microscopes in the classroom will back up those characters that we have looked at in the field using hand lenses. Given the short duration of the course, we will concentrate on the commoner and more important members of this family and focus mainly on floral rather than vegetative characters.

Course Tutor

Mark Duffell has had a lifetime interest in plants gaining the RHS Diploma in Horticulture, becoming 'Young Horticulturist of the Year' in 2001 and completing an MSc in Biological Recording and Species Identification. He now runs Arvensis Ecology splitting his time between conducting botanical surveys and teaching botanical identification and survey techniques to undergraduate and postgraduate students of universities, consultants and environmental organisations.

Timetable (provisional)

Morning: Presentation and workshop on the naming of parts and how to go about identifying Grasses using keys and other resources.

Afternoon: Looking at specimens and keying them out along with viewing them in the meadows and woods of Three Hagges Wood.

Lunch break and breaks (if the weather is fine we will eat lunch in Three Hagges Wood-Meadow).