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119 of 122 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful little guide, beautifully illustrated
This is a wonderful guide, both small and comprehensive. It combines accurate and concise descriptions with beautiful illustrations of the whole tree, the leaves, the flowers and the fruit. An interesing feature: it tells you if a tree is indigenous and, if not, when it was introduced. The only downside is that it doesn't show pictorally what each tree looks like during...
Published on 11 Jan 2007 by Greshon

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46 of 50 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars not all that useful ...
So many people have said good things about this book that I finally decided to order it. I do not regret that I did, but I am disappointed. Why? The book has all the nice features others have mentioned (beautiful illustrations, accurate descriptions ...)but if I have to identify an unknown tree - which is why I bought the book - there is no key that speeds up the process...
Published on 4 Feb 2011 by Tyrolean


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119 of 122 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A wonderful little guide, beautifully illustrated, 11 Jan 2007
This review is from: Collins Tree Guide (Paperback)
This is a wonderful guide, both small and comprehensive. It combines accurate and concise descriptions with beautiful illustrations of the whole tree, the leaves, the flowers and the fruit. An interesing feature: it tells you if a tree is indigenous and, if not, when it was introduced. The only downside is that it doesn't show pictorally what each tree looks like during different seasons, which can sometimes make identification tricky. Some guides show each tree in two seasons, half during one season and half during another.
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38 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great for enthusiasts, helpful for beginners, 2 Sep 2007
This review is from: Collins Tree Guide (Paperback)
Like many Collins guides, this is the one you want if you want to know pretty much everything. The range of species is vast and covers many of the unusual trees you'll find in aboreta, too. No other portable guide comes close. Oxford University Press's recent Trees: A field guide to the trees of Britain and Northern Europe is the only photographic contender, which has the additional benefit of distribution maps of the natural range of many species. My favourite tree guide, however, remains Cassell's Trees of Britain and Northern Europe - monster publication which lacks the illustrative detail of the Collins guide but helps guide you through the hardiness and suitability of trees for gardens, parks, etc. So whilst Collins is very much a naturalist's guide, Cassells is more geared towards tree planters and admirers.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars No space for complaints.. literally, 17 Oct 2011
This review is from: Collins Tree Guide (Paperback)
Comprehensive information packed gem. The tardis of UK tree books.

I've been teaching myself about trees for several years now and this has been an invaluable little tool.

It has a very useful key at the beginning with leaf shapes and branch appearance separated and catagorised. From here it is usually very easy to find the species you are trying to identify.

I find it easier to learn botanical id from illustrations than photos as a rule. The illustrator is able to emphasise key features of difference more effectively than using arrows on a photo.

I don't take it in to the field anymore (I used to all the time), because generally I only find the odd or two trees here and there I need to ID'd. I take samples and check when I get home.

It is an ideal learning tool. Mine is full of leaf samples and covered in muck and dead insects.. exactly how a field guide should end up.

The only slight negatives are that it is still quite hefty and that I would have liked a bit more info about what uses the wood has. But that is just greedy.. and an impossibility. The book is almost overflowing with hard core info.
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22 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What a Great Field Guide, 16 May 2007
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This review is from: Collins Tree Guide (Paperback)
I've just got into trees and this book is great. I don't normally like Collins books but this one goes everywhere with me, along with Birds of Europe by Lars Jonsson, and The Wild Flower Key by Francis Rose. Descriptions are concise and clear and illustrations are superb. If you're into trees, or like me are just getting into them, this is the field guide to have. It's a bit overwhelming at first as there's so much in it, but you soon get used to it. It's a joy to use. Hug trees? You'll hug this book.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good but not always 'enough', 2 Nov 2010
By 
Mr. M. R. Smith (England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Collins Tree Guide (Paperback)
For my Forestry unit (in my current degree) we have to learn, and are examined on, tree ID. This was the recommended text.

After having been on the field trips, attended the ID lectures and practiced tree ID in my spare time (in the field) for revision I would say that, although very good, the illustrations are not always enough to accurately ID the tree.

There is a good level of detail in the text but I feel this has been 'compressed' to fit in as many tree species as possible.

I also have the 'Collins Complete Guide to British Trees' (photographic guide) and I generally find this more useful as the photo's are very good and 'generally representative' of a 'perfect' specimen. The descriptions are also, typically, more in depth in the general rather than scientific sense. Which is more useful for ID purposes.

Purist 'botanists' say "You have to have botanic illustrations not photo's". I feel this is because they wish to keep the 'art' alive.

I guess it depends on how much money you have and what you want to do. This is a nice book with some very good paintings of the trees, leaves, twigs and bark. But I personally do not feel it is THE most useful for in the field ID. (To be completely honest, I always take three books if I want to be certain)
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Text Book, 9 Aug 2007
By 
Eva Monheim - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Collins Tree Guide (Paperback)
I use this book in my Woody Plant classes at Temple University, in the US because the drawings are amazingly accurate. At the beginning of the book there is an entire section devoted to twig drawings that few books have. It makes twig comparisons much easier for winter ID.

In addition, the book also has wonderful leaf drawings that are also invaluable for helping with ID and comparisons.
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46 of 50 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars not all that useful ..., 4 Feb 2011
This review is from: Collins Tree Guide (Paperback)
So many people have said good things about this book that I finally decided to order it. I do not regret that I did, but I am disappointed. Why? The book has all the nice features others have mentioned (beautiful illustrations, accurate descriptions ...)but if I have to identify an unknown tree - which is why I bought the book - there is no key that speeds up the process. There is a lot of comparing similar illustrations, trying to see subtle differences, going back to the text comparing various descriptions, etc.; a very tedious process in the larger genera like the Firs, Pines, Oaks, Cherries... But the trouble starts earlier: If I am a novice at identifying trees, I will have to spend much time figuring out which genus I have before me. The pictorial keys only illustrate "some" genera, so I might miss the one before me and will have to be referred to the correct one (if I am lucky) by one of the notes in the "Compare" section of each species, or I may misinterpret the illustrations and end up with something totally wrong. It is easy to make this mistake because the illustrations only give relative size. So if I want to identify a Holm Oak for example, I am faced with some choice on page 16 (oval/ boat shaped leaves: evergreen) because I have no idea how relative size translates into absolute size. So, even trying to find the correct genus will in many instances not be possible without a lot of leafing through many pages. I find this totally frustrating and unnecessary. The book is therefore definitely not "the best available" guide for identification. The predecessor of this book, Alan Mitchell's "A Field Guide to the Trees of Britain and Northern Europe" contained some keys and they offered a most welcome shortcut to the result. My two-star rating reflects the poor practicability of the "Tree Guide" for its main purpose, namely identification. I can read good descriptions on-line, but I want the best possible help in naming a tree, which I don't get from this book. (If you read German you may use the keys in Roloff/ Baertels: Flora der Gehoelze as a most formidable help)
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent, have yet to fault it., 26 Oct 2009
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Collins Tree Guide (Paperback)
It was recommended to me by someone who gained his Phd in tree deseases with " you will not need anything else" for identifying trees. It has clear leaf, bark, flower and shape of tree pictures to go with an excellent disciptive text. It is also very comprehensive with references to 72 different kinds of oak. Are there anymore?
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just what I wanted, 24 Dec 2010
This review is from: Collins Tree Guide (Paperback)
Collins Tree Guide is simply an excellent reference for all things trees: well illustrated, organised, and detailed. I also like the way it does not force itself to stick to a rigid way of describing attributes of a tree - miscellaneous - but useful - facts are mentioned.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Really impressive, 8 April 2008
By 
Four Violets (Hertford UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: Collins Tree Guide (Paperback)
Unequivocally superb. Brilliant aid to identification, which really works. The illustrations are clear, the information is comprehensive. My own tree knowledge is basic; but I would imagine this working for those far more knowledgeable as well. A real labour of love from the author and illustrator, which is a real pleasure to consult and browse through.
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