Due to Covid-19 we have had to cancel courses from March to 1st August, we hope you will find an event later in the year that you can attend.

Introducing and focusing on the skills needed to identify trees native to the British Isles, as well as common non-native species. Over the weekend both the broad-leaf trees and the conifer trees will be covered. By the end of the course you will be able to identify the more common trees to species level with confidence!

Trees are an imposing and ecologically important component of the flora of the British Isles. Since the end of the last ice age around 10,000 years ago they began to re-colonise our landscape until the rising Channel cut through the land-bridge to mainland Europe around 2,000 or so years later. Since those times many other species have been introduced for use in forestry and horticulture.

The area around Betws-y-coed is home to a diverse range of species of both broad-leaves and conifers and during the day we will be making the most of this with field visits to nearby woodland and tree collections. With a minimum amount of transport, it is possible to see a significant proportion of different UK species. We will look at characteristics such as bark, foliage, flowers and cones, and start to get to grips with the botanical terminology used in identification keys.

Our evenings will be spent in the laboratory, looking in more detail at the species we have seen during the day, and focussing on the characters used to separate similar species such as sessile and pedunculate oak, and Scots and Corsican pines. We will also look at the range of identification guides and keys available, and discuss some of the strengths and weaknesses of each.

Tutor: Matt Parratt

Matt Parratt is a qualified biologist and has worked as a research scientist for the Forestry Commission for 18 years. During that time he has worked extensively on tree and shrub seed and seedling biology and ecology. His work on the conservation of rare and endangered trees from around the world has taken him as far afield as Vietnam where he worked on endangered endemic conifers in association with the UK National Pinetum at Bedgebury and Fauna and Flora International. He is an Associate Tutor for the FSC, as well as running other identification courses throughout the year.

What's Included

  • Expert Tuition
  • Free Wi-Fi
  • Full Board Accommodation
  • Hot and Cold Drinks
  • In Course Transport
  • Personal and Travel Insurance