Grasses AIDGAP

A guide to identification using vegetative characters


Grasses are an important diagnostic component of many habitat classification schemes, including the National Vegetation Classification (NVC). Unfortunately most keys to grasses require examination of the flower heads, potentially limiting field surveys to only a few months of the year.

Developed by highly experienced field botanist and habitat surveyor Hilary Wallace, this groundbreaking guide uses vegetative characters to all the grass species found in the UK. It will help habitat surveyors carry out fieldwork for much more of year.

The dichotomous key includes line illustrations of the diagnostic features referred to in the key, coloured photos of most species and notes on distinguishing features, habitat preferences and current distribution and status in the UK.

This Grasses guide is part of the FSC’s AIDGAP series (Aids to Identification in Difficult Groups of Animals and Plants). Our AIDGAP guides are accessible identification keys,  suitable for non-specialists from age 16+. Since 1976 the AIDGAP project has produced over 40 keys to many different groups.

Although written by specialists, all AIDGAP guides undergo extensive field tests in draft form. As with all guides in the series, the Grasses AIDGAP was tested extensively before publication, by beginners and specialists alike. This, the first published version, was revised in the light of their experience.