The discovery of the native flora of Britain and Ireland
Botanical study has a very long history in the British Isles. As early as the 1500s, people were observing, recording and describing plant species from the wild. In the time that followed, a small number of luminaries attempted to document the British and Irish flora, making an enormous contribution to our knowledge and understanding of native wildflowers. David Pearman provides a history of the key botanical authors and publications, and describes his mission to track the discovery of our native flora.
Britain and Ireland have a long history of botanical recording, with printed records of wild plants dating back at least 500 years, almost to the dawn of printing. Of course, mention of plants in herbals and other manuscripts, as well as in folklore, goes back much further.