Plant Identification

Recommended resources for plant identification in Illinois and surrounding regions.


  • Plant Identification Terminology: An Illustrated Glossary by James G. Harris and Melinda Woolf Harris. Spring Lake Pub. 2001.
  • Newcombs Wildflower Guide by Lawrence Newcomb. Little, Brown and Company. 1977. (great for beginners)
  • website and apps (iPhone/Android)


Carex squarrosa
  • Flora of the Chicago Region by Gerould Wilhelm and Laura Rericha. Indiana Academy of Sciences. 2017.
  • Vascular Flora of Illinois: A Field Guide, Fourth Edition by Robert H. Mohlenbrock. Southern Illinois Press. 2013.
  • Illustrated Flora of Illinois series by Robert Mohlenbrock. Southern Illinois Press.
  • Illinois Plants database by the Illinois Natural History Survey: Wild Plants of the Prairie State
  • by John Hilty
  • Illinois Wildflowers app (iPhone/Android)
  • Illinois Native Plant Society Facebook Page
  • Forest Trees of Illinois by Robert Mohlenbrock. Illinois Department of Natural Resources. 2006.
  • Trees of Illinois by Linda Kershaw. Lone Pine. 2007.
  • Plant Communities of Southern Illinois by John Voigt and Robert Mohlenbrock. Southern Illinois Press. 1964.
  • Flora of Southern Illinois by Robert Mohlenbrock and John Voigt. Southern Illinois Press. 1959.
  • Rapid Color Field Guide: Spring Flora of Southern Illinois and Guide to Spring Wildflower Hikes in Southern Illinois 


  • Shrubs and Woody Vines of Indiana and the Midwest: Identification, Wildlife Values, and Landscaping Use by Salley S. Weeks and Harmon P. Weeks, Jr. Purdue University Press. 2012.
  • Sedges of Indiana and the Adjacent States: The Non-Carex Species by Paul E. Rothrock. Indiana University Press. 2012.
  • Indiana Wildflowers by Kay Yatskievych. Indiana University Press. 2000.


  • Field Manual of Michigan Flora by Edward G. Voss and Anton A. Reznicek. University of Michigan Press, Ann Arbor. 2012 and online database:, with online dichotomous keys


Erythronium americanum, yellow trout lily
  • The Flora of Missouri series by George Yatskievych. Missouri Botanical Garden Press. 1999–2014.
  • Trees of Missouri by Don Kurz. Missouri Department of Conservation. 2003.
  • Shrubs and Woody Vines of Missouri by Don Kurz. Missouri Department of Conservation. 1997.
  • A Key to Missouri Trees in Winter by Jerry Cliburn & Ginny Wallace. Missouri Department of Conservation. 1990.
  • Missouri Wildflowers by Edgar Denison, 6th. Missouri Department of Conservation. 2008 edition.
  • by Dan Tenaglia


  • Wildflowers of Wisconsin and the Great Lakes Region: A Comprehensive Field Guide by Merel R. Black and Emmet J. Judziewicz. University of Wisconsin Press. 2009.
  • Field Guide to Wisconsin Sedges: An Introduction to the Genus Carex (Cyperaceae) by Andrew L. Hipp. University of Wisconsin Press. 2008.
  • Online Virtual Flora of Wisconsin by the Wisconsin State Herbarium, UW–Madison
  • Spring Flora of Wisconsin: A Manual of Plants Growing without Cultivation and Flowering Before June 15 by Norman Fassett. University of Wisconsin Press. 1976.



  • Plant Life of Kentucky by Ronald Jones. The University Press of Kentucky. 2005.
  • Wildflowers and Ferns of Kentucky by Thomas Barnes and S. Wilson Francis. The University Press of Kentucky. 2004.
  • Kentucky Wildflowers

Other Regions / Taxa