If like me, you’re someone who often finds yourself perusing the internet about wild plants, you’ll know that there are some fantastic resources out there to be discovered. Whether you’re frantically Googling a potentially exciting find, planning a trip or attempting to live vicariously through others, there are many helpful botany blogs and resources out there to be explored.
While the list below is not comprehensive, I wanted to share some of the botany blogs and resources I’ve been enjoying lately. Some I visit almost daily, others I’ve just discovered but either way, all are worth a look.
I’ll do my best to keep this page live and update it as I discover new resources. Until then, I hope you find something to interest you.
A Leicestershire-based charity concerned with the recording of the county’s wildlife, NatureSpot is an incredible online resource. Not only does it profile many of the county’s plant species (and other taxa too, for that matter) but it offers a great deal of helpful information on everything from habitat and identification to confusing lookalikes.
Given that many of the plants that occur in Leicestershire and Rutland can be found elsewhere too, this is a great resource for anyone looking to learn more about a specific species.
WildflowerFinder is a fantastic resource for botanists looking to identify a pesky plant. Here, plants are searchable by factors such as colour, month, habitat and species accounts tend to be extremely detailed. Take this one on Sea Spleenwort, for example.
What I find most helpful about this site is the author’s tendency to showcase multiple photos covering all aspects of a particular plant. Stems, leaves and flowers, all are routinely covered, making it easy to compare your finds.
For those who don’t own the book, BSBI’s online crib sheets are a godsend. Made available by Dr Tim Rich, they tackle some of the plant families most likely to confuse botanists in the field. Sure, they can be fairly academic (so much in botany often is) but the keys, identification aids and general tips contained within are extremely useful. Take a look at this one on Bugles, as an example.
Bonus: BSBI’s YouTube Channel
Given that this is BSBI we’re talking about, you won’t be surprised to learn that they also have a pretty fantastic YouTube channel covering just about anything you could wish for on British botany. Plant identification, beginner-friendly talks, informative workshops and updates on exciting projects across the country, whatever your poison, they’ve got you covered.
I can’t believe it took me so long to discover this blog. A website by botanist, Karen Andrews, Botany Karen is a fantastic collection of all things botanical in the British Isles. With no end of beautiful photography, this site is useful for plant identification but more importantly is a treasure trove of information about the plants themselves. Take this post on Frog Orchids, for example. Overall, this blog is both beautiful and detailed. I can’t recommend it enough.
Botany in Scotland
I really like this one, especially the author’s long-running ‘Plant of the Week’ series. Coupling incredibly detailed accounts with lovely photography, these posts provide a complete overview of a particular plant. Narrow-leaved Ragwort, for example. If like me, you’re into biological recording, this is the website for you.
A local one now, at least if you live in the North East. A long-standing nature diary, Heather’s blog brings together observations on the natural world focusing predominately on plants but covering other taxa too. With lovely photography, lots of facts, and a focus on flora in the North East. It is a great regular read for botanists in our region.
Bug Women – Adventures in London
Bug Woman’s blog is another gem. Coupling the excitement of everyday observations with well-researched deep dives into single species, it is one of the few blogs I read each week. The author’s Wednesday Weed series is a particular highlight and whether we’re talking folklore, taxonomy or intra-species relationships, never fails to reveal new information about the plant in question. Take the humble Gooseberry, for example.
Botanising in Huntingdonshire, Yorkshire and Beyond
A fantastically informative blog focused on botanical recording in two vice counties: West Yorkshire and Huntingdonshire. Collating and sharing interesting discoveries from these areas, the author provides a fascinating account of what can be encountered in the British countryside. While the plants featured may be restricted to two small areas, the information contained within and photographic aids are universally helpful. Take this post on a new cultivar of arum, for example. I didn’t even know this existed…
Bonus: Mick Crawley’s Twitter account
It may seem odd to feature a Twitter account while discussing botany blogs but really, this one is a corker. Mick Crawley is an incredible botanist regularly sharing his finds on Twitter where he often shares helpful identification threads too. What is perhaps the best about Mick’s feed is his tendency to focus on difficult groups not often tackled elsewhere. Verbascum? Check. Daffodils? Yep. Non-native street trees? Sure!