Changes that have occurred over the past decade in taxonomic thinking and public attitude toward plants and wildlife in general are reflected in this completely revised and updated third edition. This informational guide is intended for anyone with a practical interest in plant identification and the desire to understand the scientific basis of the identification procedure. It enables the reader to identify all flowering plant families normally found in the wild or in cultivation (outside or under glass) in northern temperate regions. The text is self-contained, with illustrated discussions of floral structure and terminology. There are full bracketed keys (to the 272 families included) with a comprehensive section explaining their use. The Engler and Pranti system has been adopted as the basis for the recognition of families and their taxonomic sequence. Also included are a glossary and a chapter of further advice on identification.