Paul Kirtley's Tree & Plant Identification Masterclass

Paul Kirtley's Tree & Plant Identification Masterclass is the most detailed botanical training created for those focused on bushcraft and survival skills. This in-depth course will take your identification skills to a completely new level.... 

The course opens for enrolment once per year and this page is where you should register your interest.  Paul will send you details of the next course opening and in the meantime will also send you articles and presentations on making use of trees and plants for bushcraft and survival. 

Register your interest with your name and email address, then Paul will be in touch.

You can also scroll down this page to find out more...

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Recent social media comments from members of the course...


12 Modules With Over 120 Sections

The Tree and Plant Identification Masterclass is divided into 12 modules that broadly follow the seasons of the northern hemisphere.  More than 120 sections are spread across the 12 modules, with each section focusing on a particular aspect of important trees and plants for bushcraft and survival. Pictured here is an example of one of these sections.

Videos Filmed On Location

The Tree and Plant Identification Masterclass contains numerous videos filmed on location in high definition. These largely fall into one of two types, either looking at a particular subset of trees or plants, such as trees with needles in a particular area, or a seasonal, virtual tree and plant walk looking at prominent plants and trees, along with their identification features.

Screencasts Packed With Info

Screencasts are an important format for this course.  They allow a combination of images and text-based information to be shared, along with a voiceover.  They usually cover multiple species or genera, often with an accompanying set of notes or a worksheet. You watch these as you would a video.  Reviewing these again later is made more efficient by being able to play the screencasts at up to 2x the recorded speed.

Course Notes

Handy course notes with summary information, in attractively designed PDFs for you to download and save or print are provided. These have all been created specifically for this course.


Worksheets are provided for you to download and use in conjunction with videos and presentations. These help you process the information in the screencasts and videos, as well as forming the basis of a set of your own notes, should you wish to use them for this.

Distribution and Habitat Information

It's important to understand where you might find specific species or particular groups of species.  The "Three Fs" approach, described in the pre-course presentations, highlights the fact that we want to bring to the fore widespread and common species.  But we still need to know the geographic distribution and the habitats in which we might find a particular tree or plant.  This allows us to be aware of the likely resources in an area and not waste time looking for materials we are unlikely to find. Knowing broadly where species are likely to occur can also help us positively identify species when we first encounter them.

A Systematic Approach

The material in the course develops your knoweldge systematically, involving you with "homework", where you apply the identification frameworks to the trees and plants found near to you. Areas of identification knowledge are revisited multiple times, in different seasons.  Importantly a whole range of identification features are considered across the course - shoots, leaves, stems, needles, bark, buds, flowers, fruits, cones, seeds, roots and tubers, as well as the overall morphology, habit and character of species.

High Quality Images Used Throughout

In both the screencasts and notes, high quality photography, captured on professional grade cameras is used throughout the course.

Custom-Built Course Portal

The Tree and Plant Identification Masterclass is delivered in a custom-built, dedicated course portal, which is housed on Paul Kirtley's Online Bushcraft Courses website.  The course portal is fully device responsive and will look at its best on high-pixel count screens such as modern phones, tablets and retina screens. But regardless of your device, old or new, the course portal is a dream to use and look at.

BONUS - Webinars - Value £240

In addition to all the course materials in the portal, there will be six webinars to accompany the course.  These are live seminars, using the leading webinar software provider, to deliver an engaging and interactive session for the students on the course.  In each webinar, we usually review the latest couple of course modules, using fun, informal visual quizzes. These sessions also allow us to layer on additional information and answer student questions. Webinars are recorded and posted in the course portal, so course participants can review them subsequent to the live session.

Given the amount of valuable information in this course, delivered across multiple formats, it's probably not surprising we receive great feedback...

Danny Barrett, U.K.

"I joined the Tree and Plant ID Masterclass as my knowledge of tree and plants was lacking. I found the course very well mapped out and a joy to learn. My knowledge of trees and plants has grown ten fold and continues to grow thanks to Paul Kirtley. I highly recommend the tree and plant masterclass to people who want to advance their bushcraft knowledge."

Ian Shankland, U.K.

"Paul’s enthusiasm is infectious. What would be an impossibly large subject to absorb is made realisable by the focus on the most relevant aspects from the bushcraft and survival point of view. Of particular value to me is being able to learn at my own speed and when life events intervened I could catch up later, as the material will always be there to go back to....In short, this course does what it sets out to do. I initially thought that including ‘Masterclass’ in the course title was a little pretentious but in fact it is very appropriate. That’s exactly what it is."

Craig Taylor, U.K.

"I'm enrolled on three of Paul Kirtley's online programmes.  Having worked in the online training industry for approximately 15 years I can wholeheartedly attest to the sound design, delivery and facilitation that goes into each of these programmes."

Tom Scandian, Australia.

"I've had a chance to get my teeth into Paul Kirtley's Tree and Plant Masterclass and I’m blown away by how clear, concise and detailed his work and information is. Having been interested in the subject for sometime and reading through numerous books and websites teaching myself (and been through frustrating periods banging my head against a wall with certain terminology and grasping concepts) I can promise you, without a doubt that you will learn so much so quickly from Paul."

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