Tuesday, 20 December 2011

Research on orchids

I have been occupied for the past 6 months with research on people in Britain making wine and beer at home using wild plants. While I had less time outdoors looking at native orchids this year I learnt a lot about the way people identify and select wild plants for use. I am now starting to work on a PhD 'Salep: Turkey's wild orchid harvest'.

With Central Middle Eastern as well as European flora both found in Turkey there are three times as many orchid species growing in Turkey as there are in Britain. Some of the species I will be looking at are quite different to those found in Britain but many of the species found in Britain also grow in Turkey.

One of the advantages of the limited flora in the relatively small geographical area that constitutes Britain is that there are often detailed records on particular species. Data on British orchid populations will be useful in analysing the data I will be collecting over in Turkey.  So while I am getting to grips with Turkish orchids I will also be learning a lot more about the orchids growing in Britain.