Welcome to the website of the Herts Flora Group

Wild Plants in Hertfordshire


Work to study and record the wild flora of Hertfordshire is co-ordinated by the Herts Flora Group (HFG). There is no formal membership and we welcome anyone interested in helping to monitor and conserve plants and their habitats in the county. HFG holds field meetings at least monthly during the spring and summer. These are extremely informal, providing great opportunities to develop identification skills and interact with like-minded enthusiasts. Activities are led by Astrid Biddle, Ian Denholm and Alla Mashanova who serve as county plant recorders for both the Herts Natural History Society (HNHS) and the Botanical Society of Britain and Ireland (BSBI).

Summaries of HFG activities and important plant discoveries are published in ‘The Hertfordshire Naturalist’. The report published in 2020 and covering the years 2017-2019 is available in pdf format here. If you wish to be added to the email circulation list for HFG news and activities, please contact Ian Denholm.

Submitting plant records

Continuous recording of wild plants is essential for documenting changes in their occurrence and distributions, and records are welcomed from experts and beginners alike.

A system for data entry that was purpose-built for the HFG is being discontinued because the underpinning software is becoming increasingly obsolete. Instead we recommended submitting records using the widely-used iRecord portal. This can be accessed from a computer or downloaded as a mobile phone app.

Records can be input as a single observation (so-called ‘casual record') or a list of species for a particular locality. All casual records should include a grid reference with six-figure (and preferably greater) precision. Site lists should provide a grid reference central for the location being surveyed. Comments on abundance, likely status (native/introduced etc) and life-stage (seedling/flowering/fruiting etc) are always valuable. iRecord includes an interactive map that makes it straightforward to pinpoint a location and generate its reference.

All records submitted for a Herts locality will await verification by one of the recorders before being added to databases held by the Herts Environmental Records Centre (HERC) and the BSBI. If identifications are uncertain, iRecord allows you to add photos to support a record and aid verification. Identification queries (especially for rarer species) can be sent by email with attached photos to one of the recorders, but please liaise in advance before sending live material. IRecord users get a notification confirming verification (or not!), and possibly a comment if more information is required.

For advice on plant identification, or any other aspects of Herts botany, please email the Flora Group organisers with or without photos as attachments.

Hertfordshire's County Flower

The slopes of Therfield Heath, near Royston, are vibrant with the trumpets of Pasque Flowers Pulsatilla vulgaris in late March-early April and are a magnificent sight.

Are you photographing flowers?

Look at the stunning photographs on our HNHS Flickr pages, or view the website gallery here.