Identifying wild flowers can be a great way of learning about nature without having to run after animals who, for some reason, don't like standing still long enough. Unfortunately this is one skill that requires a little expert help and so you need to purchase or borrow a Guide to Wild Flowers or Plants for your local area. This can become an intriguing hobby and may even lead to a career in botany.
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Use the key on several wild plants you already know, until you can use the key practically for any flower or plant you come across in your area.
Learn more about your local flora (the wild plants in your area) by joining a local wild flower or naturalist club.
Keep a life list, or mark the location and date you found the plant in your guide or in a journal.
This can be a very satisfying hobby and if you do become a botanist or National Parks guide, your little hand-kept guide will be extremely useful to refer back to all the time and you will undoubtedly continue to add to it during your career or volunteering.
Impress your family and friends with your botanical knowledge.
Encourage them to help protect plants in their area.
Finding a good guide can be troublesome because they are usually very specific to an area, so ask at your local public library, a Biology department at a University close by or a nearby Park Office.
If you ever discover a flower or plant that isn't in your relevant guide and you think it may be a new discovery, take a photo of it and go and speak with a botanist at your local Parks Office or Botany Department in a university. They will always be keen to identify a new species of plant. If it is something new and you were its discoverer, it is quite possible the plant will be named after you!
Guides and advice on which wild flowers are edible are not always correct so avoid tummy aches and get your food at the store unless you are absolutely sure and you are not eating something rare or illegal to take.
Always leave wildflowers and plants where you find them, to preserve the plants for years and other visitors to come. You can never be sure how rare the plant is - it may differ even slightly from others not in your area and as such, it is important not to disturb it. Take a photo, not a plant.