What is the course about?
Want to learn to recognise some of London’s splendid trees? This practical course is ideal for those new to trees and provides a good introduction to the enthusiast. Getting to know the clues to look for when identifying trees and their names, plus helpful books and guide sheets, in theoretical and practical sessions, some of them outdoors in areas near to Build.
Letta Jones, MA, is a Lecturer in Horticulture and Garden History. She taught at Capel Manor and Birkbeck Colleges for 15 years as well as at the Build. She is a is a Green Flag Parks judge.
What will we cover?
Begin your day learning the important features to look for, including bark, twigs, leaves, flowers and fruit. You will also learn about common and botanical names of trees and be given guidance on helpful publications.
In the afternoon we will put theory into practice. You will be taken to visit a park or garden local to Build, where you’ll enjoy seeing a selection of introduced and native trees. With the help of your experienced tutor, you’ll soon get to grips with tree identification.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
- Appreciate the beauty of trees.
- Recognise at least 8 species of trees found in London.
- Be familiar with the key clues to tree identification.
- List the relative benefits of using common and botanical names for trees.
- Pursue your own interest in trees with confidence.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
This is an introductory course and does not assume any previous study or reading, although you will need a reasonable standard of English to keep up with the course. An interest in trees and enthusiasm for learning more are the only prerequisites. As with most courses, an open mind and willingness to listen and observe are more important than specific levels of skill. You will need to be able to walk short distances (max 15 min) and stand for approx.10-15 minutes at a time.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
This course takes place at Build in the morning with local walks in the afternoon. We will set off for the walk from Build at 13.30 but will not return there at the end of the walk. Guidance will be given on how to return there.
There will be talks, demonstrations, practical pairs/small group work, discussions and Q&A sessions.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
There are no additional costs for the course. However, if you already have a tree identification book or/ and a hand lens, please bring it along. Strong shoes, a rainproof jacket and umbrella are advised. An A-Z map guide to London would also be helpful. A useful guide is the fold out laminated sheet produced by the Field Studies Council: The Tree Name Trail. A Key to Common Trees available from www.field-studies-council.org/publications/Tel.0845 345 4072.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
You might also be interested in:
HS112 City of London gardens - their history and botany
HS029 Wild London, spring nature in the city
HS021 - Introduction to botany
HS157 Great botanists
HS090 An introduction to birdwatching with ornithology.
General information and advice on courses at Build is available from the Student Centre and Library on Monday to Friday from 12:00 – 19:00.
See the course guide for term dates and further details