The key provided here identifies the trees, shrubs and woody climbers found in the wild in the UK, whether native or introduced (465 taxa).
The UK has a long tradition of introducing plants from all over the world into parks and gardens. A key including all of these would be very long indeed!
The distribution data utilized for the species list is taken from two sources: 1) The New Atlas of the British and Irish Flora CD-ROM published by the Botanical Society of the British Isles, and, 2) the Post Code Plants database held at the Natural History Museum, London.
Wherever possible, the key concentrates on characters of the leaves, since these are the easiest parts of the plant to obtain. Although useful, flowers and fruits are only available for short periods. They often occur on the higher branches where they are out of reach. If using fruits that have fallen from the tree make sure they come from that plant you are studying and not from a different individual nearby.
An identification key is a tool to help people identify plants. Identifying plants in the summer is quite fun and isn’t too hard, but it takes practice. Using this key takes practice too.