Winter Twigs

I've been inspired by Elizabeth's walk around her Trees on the Boundary to finally get around to downloading the Woodland Trust's guide to Winter Twigs. Whilst I'm already familiar with a number of the common hedgerow species, there's still a few others I'd like to identify when I'm out walking.

The picture shows just half of the guide: I decided to fold my printed A4 sheet in half and laminate it so it'll last longer. The resultant A5 size makes it handier for keeping in my jacket's map pocket too. You'll see from the picture I've picked up a twig from our garden, to show you how the guide makes it really easy to identify our most common deciduous trees.

The Woodland Trust do a number of useful guides in their Nature Detectives series, including one which helps to look for the early signs of spring. Both this and the twigs guide could be useful activities for next week's half term holiday, if the weather permits :)


  1. That's a great idea. Trees are always a problem to identify in winter - or some at least. Trust you to laminate it too - very sensible - though you can get quite good waterproof map paper that works in printers nowadays

  2. TBS - oooh I didn't know you could buy it! That reminds me of standing in various streams doing habitat surveys :)

  3. This is such a good idea although I still have trouble identifying most trees let alone twigs! Flighty xx

  4. Hi Flighty - the twigs are much easier. I always find the silhouette guides just don't match the tree I'm seeing even when I know what it is :/

    They also have a couple of leaf guides for later in the year.

  5. Oh wow, what a great guide! One area that I wish I were better versed in is identifying tree types.

  6. Hi Tanya - this guide really does help :)

  7. There is so much out there that I don't know exists. Very useful, I'm off now to browse The Woodland Trust site, thank you. Have fun during mid term break :)

  8. Ah, Adam is a member of the woodland trust and I remember they sent him a little leaf shaped book he used to go around with. It's a great idea to laminate it and take it with you. I always think it's nice to learn things while you walk! I should do this with my bird guides because I always forget the book but I could stash an A5 sheet or two into my bino case!

  9. Thank you for the link to the Woodland Trust site- it's fantastic! I have children and I run a Rainbow Guide unit so I've bookmarked half a dozen things straight away.

    I'm on a bit of a mission to educate the Rainbows (and their parents...)about common plants and trees. We live in a small village in the Oxfordshire countryside, yet every time we go for a walk I am heralded as a nature expert because I can identify common flowers, or, for example, an elder *without flowers or berries on*!! The only two trees most parents and girls can confidently identify (in leaf) are 'acorn' and 'conker'...

  10. Am off to download twig and leaf guides, how wonderful, I am useless on both.

  11. ' Natures' Detectives' includes some great resources for both young people and adults :) That particular sheet reminds me of long ago nature table days at primary school. Recognised number 1 immediately and hope that it it is not destined to disappear.

  12. How exciting. I would love to be able to identify trees from twigs. Excellent.

  13. Angie - have fun!

    Anna B - good idea :)

    Hazel - so pleased you can make good use of this and the Woodland Trust site. OPAL is another good one to consider. They have lots of projects suitable for all ages which aim to collect scientific data. Have a look at the lichen survey for instance.

    Janet - they should really help :)

    Donna - they are

    Dee - is there an American equivalent organisation which produces something similar? It would be great to add a link for all the USA based commenters/readers

    1. Thanks, I'll have a look at that site too.

    2. Hi Hazel - thanks for coming back to check the comments. I hope you and your Rainbow Guides have a lot of fun with the activities you devise for them :)


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