What’s this plant? Gardeners aren’t the only ones who find themselves wanting to identify a particular flower or shrub. Hikers like to learn the names of wildflowers, new homeowners want their landscape labeled, and most of us just get curious at times. With my new job (answering plant-related questions, either identifying them or diagnosing a problem), I’ve been identifying a lot of plants lately (if you missed it, I’m now working for a gardening app), and I’ve learned some tips.
There are two approaches to plant ID. The easiest for a non-botanist involves noticing some eye-catching feature and then either flipping pages in a colorful field guide or searching the internet for that attribute. Most wildflower guides are arranged by color, simplifying this process.