How to Learn Botany in a Day



If you find this post useful, please take one second to like, share, or tweet it. Thanks!


© 2015 Shanna Lea

When I went out on nature walks and hiking with my kids, we always observed the plants we saw. We also watched the goats browse on different plants to see what they liked, given a natural diet away from the barn.

Trying to learn about plants can be a big undertaking when you are learning on your own through plant identification field guides. There is a pattern to all these plants families though, and Thomas J Elpel has written books to help you learn these families in a simple way. When you have learned them, you will even be able to identify them when going 60 miles down the road, see a flower and know it’s in the mustard family!

There are many reasons to learn about plants. Some of the reasons I wanted to learn about them were:

  • Tap into ancestral knowledge of plants
  • Identify edible plants
  • Identify poisonous plants
  • Identify plants for survival
  • Identify plants for medicinal remedies
  • Identify plants for providing a natural diet for my livestock—goats, rabbits, chickens, etc
  • Teach my kids how to identify plants so they would have ancestral knowledge to pass on to their children

Botany in a Day: The Patterns Method of Plant Identification An Herbal Field Guide to Plant Families of North America

In Thomas J Elpel’s book, Botany in a Day, you will learn basic plant anatomy and how to identify eight of the worlds most common plant families, which includes more than 45,000 species. With this knowledge alone, you can recognize the plant family patterns anywhere in the world, by looking at the petals, stamens, pistils, and leaf patterns.

The plant families you will learn through the books and card games are:

  • Lily
  • Pea
  • Grass
  • Mustard
  • Parsley
  • Rose
  • Aster
  • Mint

Shanleya’s Quest: A Botany Adventure for Kids ages 9 to 99

Check out these 3 videos by Thomas J Elpel, and then the books and card game below. Play card games for memory and concentration in matching the plant families. Learn with your kids by adding it to your homeschooling program or enhance your child’s education through the summer.

How To Identify Plants Quickly; Botany In A Day with Tom Elpel and Marjory Wildcraft

Botany in a Day: The Patterns Method of Plant Identification with Thomas J. Elpel

Botany in a Day Tutorial (46 mins) The Patterns Method of Plant Identification


Books, Coloring Books and Games That May Be of Interest:

Books by Thomas J Elpel

Botany in a Day: The Patterns Method of Plant Identification

Shanleya’s Quest: A Botany Adventure for Kids ages 9 to 99

Shanleya’s Quest Card Game

Other books that may interest you:

Plant identification guides

The Botany Coloring Book

Medicinal Plants Coloring Book (Dover Nature Coloring Book)

Herbs Coloring Book (Dover Nature Coloring Book)

Wild Cards: Edible Wild Foods (All Ages)

Wildcraft! An Herbal Adventure Game, a cooperative board game



Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *