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The Patterns Method of Plant Identification

December 2, 2017 @ 1:00 pm - 3:30 pm


Join Montana author and naturalist Thomas J. Elpel for an evening of fun, games, and learning about plants! On December 2nd, Thomas J. Elpel, author of Botany in a Day, will be teaching an interactive workshop entitled The Patterns Method of Plant Identification.

Tom is the author of Botany in a Day, Foraging the Mountain West, and Shanleya’s Quest: A Botany Adventure for Kids Ages 9 to 99.

Tom’s books have changed the way people learn about plants. Related plants have similar patterns for identification, and they often have similar properties and similar uses. There are tens of thousands of plant species across the northern latitudes, yet only about 100 families of plants. Learning family patterns provides useful information about new plants, even before you know their names.

Tom will introduce plant family patterns, and we’ll play the Shanleya’s Quest Patterns in Plant Card Game to integrate pattern recognition at an instinctive level. It’s easy and fun! We’ll play games like Memory, Slap Flower, Crazy Flowers, Wildflower Rummy, and Shanleya’s Harvest. Develop your gut instincts to instantly recognize the majority of plant families around you. Learn to “shoot from the hip” when walking down a city sidewalk or a forest trail:  “Mint family,” “Rose family,” “Pea family,” “Mustard family.” This essential introduction to plant identification teaches key patterns to positively identify more than 45,000 species of plants to the correct families. Class is limited to 20 students. Cost $45. Attendees may purchase admission in advance at Barjon’s Books in downtown Billings or online at via Green University:


December 2, 2017
1:00 pm - 3:30 pm
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Thomas Elpel


Barjon’s Bookstore
MT United States + Google Map
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