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I used to have a flower identification book that was organised by colour, how many petals, types of leaf etc. so I could work through the options until I found the flower I had seen. However, I've moved country and for various reasons I would like to find an online equivalent rather than buying another book.

Unfortunately, virtually all the identification sites I've looked at seem to require a photo or use of a smartphone. Aside from the fact that I have no interest in taking photos or using my phone outside, I don’t get much satisfaction out of instant answers and would prefer a way I can investigate the options myself.

This site that is the kind of thing I'm looking for, but it's specific to New England, whereas I'm in Sweden.

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  • We are in 2023 - Did you check online tools, e.g. Google Lens, PlantNet Plant Identification or PictureThis - Plant Identifier? Usually they don't require a photo, you just spot it with your smartphone. Commented Apr 24, 2023 at 16:30
  • @WernfriedDomscheit Oh thanks, I didn't realise what year it was. I'm looking for something that doesn't require me to use my phone (you are assuming I have a smartphone). I'll edit to clarify. Commented Apr 24, 2023 at 17:13
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    You write "I would like to find an online equivalent" and you don't like to take a picture. Thus I assumed, you must have a smartphone. Honestly I don't understand what you are looking for. Online, no photo/smartphone, no new book - how can this work? Are you looking for an e-book, e.g. Kindle Complete Guide to Edible Wild Plants? Commented Apr 24, 2023 at 19:58
  • I prefer to use a desktop computer. I posted a link to the kind of site I'm ideally looking for and would like to know if there is something similar that covers flowers in Europe. Commented Apr 25, 2023 at 5:22
  • I'd get in contact with a local nature organization and ask them. I'm not from Sweden, but e.g. for the Netherlands there are multiple websites which do exactly what you want: start a lookup by month or color or combination of number of petals/leaf/height/color/... Another alternative is getting an actual book and learn the determination key, but that can be pretty hard without first following a course.
    – stijn
    Commented May 2, 2023 at 9:10

3 Answers 3

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This field guide to NW Europe is available in ebook form and iflora is also available as an ebook. Don't know how helpful that would be.

In the past I have put together PowerPoints of species we find in certain regions to use for training purposes. You might need to create your own database if there's nothing else out there.

You can also use an app like inaturalist on your computer as a field guide. It's just not very user-friendly without a photo.

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  • iNaturalist is good because you can browse to find the type of flower you have seen. Though it takes some work and IDs can be suspect depending on the person doing the ID. I usually confirm with a second website or book when using iNaturalist as ID.
    – bob1
    Commented Apr 25, 2023 at 21:17
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This site covers the UK rather than Sweden, so not a complete answer. But it is such an outstanding resource that I thought it worth posting here.

It is effectively the content you would get in a serious wild flower ID book but on a website where it been be searched in various ways:

http://wildflowerfinder.org.uk/

I have used it extensively until I bought a decent book, which I find much easier to use in the field.

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There is a DigitalPlant atlas found here

You could look at the map in your area to see what species are present, and then see what books are available for those species.

You can also search by taxonomic family

Example flower here

Unfortunately, the link for books appears to be broken, but you could write them and ask about that.

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  • Nice page, but it focus on seeds, fruits, and vegetative plant parts rather than flowers. Commented Apr 25, 2023 at 13:46
  • I was thinking this could potentially be used as a way to find identification guide books, as that seems like what the OP is mostly after. Commented Apr 26, 2023 at 10:45

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