Due to Covid-19 we have had to cancel this course, we hope you will find an event later in the year that you can attend.

Trees and woodlands are some of the most prominent and ecologically important features of our landscape. Recognising different species increases our enjoyment of these beautify organisms immeasurably. This course aims to build up your confidence in identifying trees to individual species level, focussing on identification by becoming familiar with diagnostic features, getting to grips with the terminology of the different shapes of leaves and other botanical features. There are a good number of different species around the centre but we will also visit local sites to identify as many species as possible in the field.

Some learning objectives for this course include:

1. Define what a tree is and how they fit into all the divisions within the plant kingdom, reviewing the key differences between angiosperms / gymnosperms and hardwoods /softwoods.
2. Become familiar with looking at trees closely by using a hand lens and identifying diagnostic features of tree species encountered.
3. Revise botanical terminology relating to trees by defining words that will be used during this course and consolidate learning by actively using the terminology in the field.
4. Practice identifying broadleaved and coniferous trees using keys provided.

This course is suitable for beginners; no previous knowledge will be assumed. This course contributes to Continuing Professional Development (CPD) requirements and a Certificate of Attendance can be provided on request.

Please note this course is based at the Royal Hospital School, Holbrook IP9 2RX.

Information about the Royal Hospital School

How to find the Royal Hospital School

Tutor: Alanna Cooper

Alanna Cooper is a botanist and is principal ecologist at a local environmental and engineering consultancy. She has experience of botanical survey work and habitat management in both Canada and the UK for a diverse variety of habitats. She is actively involved in the Wildflower Society and BSBI and is convenor for the CIEEM East of England committee.

With the generous support of the Suffolk Biodiversity and Information Service, along with the Suffolk Naturalists Society, we are able to provide bursary funding for this course for those students who meet the criteria. For more information please go to Bursaries for Natural History Courses.


Bring a friend!

If you are attending a course at Flatford Mill at the sole occupancy price, we are offering a special rate for a friend or partner not enrolled on the course to also stay at £50 per night for dinner, bed and breakfast.

Please contact FSC Flatford Mill on 01206 297110 or [email protected] to book this offer

What's Included

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

Before You Attend

What to bring

  • Hand lens (minimum x10 magnification), can also be purchased from the tutor at cost.
  • Outdoor gear for the field visits, including stout shoes or boots, waterproofs and wellies (just in case, but these may be hired from the Centre), a small rucksack or bag, insect repellent, a lunchbox, flask.
  • There will be a lot of standing around outside keying out specimens. If you have a portable fold out chair/garden kneeling mat you would like to use (you will have to carry it yourself) please bring it along; fold out chairs can also be hired at the Centre.


  • Tree ID guide(s)