|Rubus surrejanus in Aberdeenshire sunlight
Image: D. Welch
Some of these plants have rarely been recorded before - David Welch, the BSBI's County Recorder for Kincardineshire and North Aberdeenshire, found Rubus surrejanus in two places, which yielded only the second and third records of this plant for the whole of Scotland.
Alongside the serious info that you need in a plant record - who found it, who determined it (ie checked what it was), location with grid ref - there are evocative phrases like "19 plants in damp tussocky Molinia under birch in damp birch woodland".
As Mike Porter says, "Entries like <<Dactylorhiza traunsteinerioides *69 Westmorland: small grazed ledges & flushed turf in upland limestone pasture>> cannot fail to raise the spirits and inspire the planning of future expeditions".
Mike uses symbols - don't worry, there's a key!- to indicate interesting things about each plant - is it a new county record, or is a particular non-native plant an archaeophyte or a neophyte?
|Close-up: can you see why this is no "ordinary" bramble?
Image: D. Welch
If you have recorded any interesting plants, you need to contact your County Recorder(s) who will pass any records on to Mike if they are happy with them. You may need to press a herbarium-standard specimen and send it to a BSBI referee to be checked - like the specimen above, which David pressed for his own personal herbarium. Notes here on BSBI best practice in collecting specimens by the master, Arthur Chater.
|A typical Plant ID training session - this one is in Leics.
Image: L. Marsh
And if you don't yet feel confident enough to record on your own - try going out with a local recording group or check out BSBI training opportunities. You'll find out what support is available in your area and how you could start contributing towards the plant records held in our database.
BSBI members: watch out for New Journal of Botany dropping through your letterbox any day now and it also features a paper by David on the floristics of contrasting grazed-down moorland sites initially dominated by heather.