First Flora of Cambridgeshire since 1964 covers 2,330 species and hybrids

PUBLISHED: 16:51 22 January 2020 | UPDATED: 16:51 22 January 2020

First Flora of Cambridgeshire since 1964 covers 2,330 species and hybrids. Author Alan Leslie is also pictured. Picture: ALAN LESLIE/ RHS

First Flora of Cambridgeshire since 1964 covers 2,330 species and hybrids. Author Alan Leslie is also pictured. Picture: ALAN LESLIE/ RHS

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The first flora of Cambridgeshire since 1964 - covering 2,330 species and hybrids - has been published by author Alan Leslie who been recording the area since 1972.

First Flora of Cambridgeshire since 1964 covers 2,330 species and hybrids. Author Alan Leslie is also pictured. Picture: ALAN LESLIE/ RHSFirst Flora of Cambridgeshire since 1964 covers 2,330 species and hybrids. Author Alan Leslie is also pictured. Picture: ALAN LESLIE/ RHS

The comprehensive work shows an increase of 1,072 on the last traditional Flora published in 1964.

It is illustrated with photographs of stunning habitats and notable Cambridgeshire plants.

The main body of the book contains comprehensive species accounts.

These include the date of first record, status, distribution, habitats, references to previous Floras details of the plant.

First Flora of Cambridgeshire since 1964 covers 2,330 species and hybrids. Author Alan Leslie is also pictured. Picture: ALAN LESLIE/ RHSFirst Flora of Cambridgeshire since 1964 covers 2,330 species and hybrids. Author Alan Leslie is also pictured. Picture: ALAN LESLIE/ RHS

The introductory chapters, illustrated with maps and tables, cover topography, geology and climate. There is also an extensive history of plant recorders in the county and a review of gains and losses of species.

Sites of botanical interest, many of national importance, are featured such as Chippenham Fen, Wicken Fen, the Devil's Ditch, the Ouse Washes, the Nene Washes and the urban flora of Cambridge.

Author Alan Leslie, said: "This is an essential reference for botanists, ecologists, naturalists, land owners, conservation organisations, planners, local authorities, and all those with an interest in plants growing wild in this large and rapidly changing county.

"This Flora gives detailed accounts of all the species ever reported in the county.

First Flora of Cambridgeshire since 1964 covers 2,330 species and hybrids. Author Alan Leslie is also pictured. Picture: ALAN LESLIE/ RHSFirst Flora of Cambridgeshire since 1964 covers 2,330 species and hybrids. Author Alan Leslie is also pictured. Picture: ALAN LESLIE/ RHS

"Equal attention is given to native plants, aliens, critical taxa and variants meaning it offers something of value to a broad range of users."

Alan Leslie has been recording the Cambridgeshire flora since arriving in the county as an undergraduate in 1972.

He undertook a PhD in Cambridge on Goldilocks buttercup, Ranunculus auricomus.

He worked as a cultivar registrar at RHS Garden Wisley for 40 years but made regular botanical visits to Cambridgeshire.

First Flora of Cambridgeshire since 1964 covers 2,330 species and hybrids. Author Alan Leslie is also pictured. Picture: ALAN LESLIE/ RHSFirst Flora of Cambridgeshire since 1964 covers 2,330 species and hybrids. Author Alan Leslie is also pictured. Picture: ALAN LESLIE/ RHS

Returning to live in Cambridge in 2005, he was appointed Botanical Recorder for the county, a position he held until 2019.

The Flora of Cambridgeshire is available online published by the Royal Horticultural Society in December 2019 for £70.

It can also be bought from the RHS Garden bookshops.

First Flora of Cambridgeshire since 1964 covers 2,330 species and hybrids. Author Alan Leslie is also pictured. Picture: ALAN LESLIE/ RHSFirst Flora of Cambridgeshire since 1964 covers 2,330 species and hybrids. Author Alan Leslie is also pictured. Picture: ALAN LESLIE/ RHS

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