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Introduction to Plant Identification

Course Code: AL0249CA20

Introduction to Plant Identification

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Date & Time

We are offering this course online on November 4 & 5, 2021. View course details and register!

Last Held: November 7-8, 2019
9:00am - 3:30pm (Check in time on Day 1: 8:30am)


In this two-day class, Licensed Tree Expert Ted Szczawinski will share a wealth of information about how to positively identify plants, trees, and shrubs. With hands-on activities, you'll learn to unlock clues found in the bark, fruit, leaves, flowers, and more! You'll learn a step-by-step method that limits endless memorizing. Be prepared to go outside!

This class is highly recommended for anyone planning to attend Landscape Plants: Identification, Selection and Application.

Introduction to Plant Identification: Photo Slideshow

Click here to read comments about the course from past participants.

Click here to meet the instructor, Ted Szczawinski, and to see what past attendees said about the "passionate," "outstanding," "gem" of a teacher.

Interested in earning a Landscape Certificate?
Then don’t miss this once-a-year foundational course. It is required for these certificate programs:


The November 7-8, 2019 offering of this course was approved for the following credits. We will reapply for similar credits the next time the course runs, but we cannot guarantee credit approval for future offerings.

Certified Public Works Manager (CPWM) Credits
6 Technical

International Society of Arboriculture (ISA) Credits
Certified Arborist: 10; BCMA Science: 5; BCMA Management: 5

NJ Urban and Community Forestry Continuing Education Units

NJ Licensed Tree Experts

Early Registration Fee TBD  
Registration Fee TBD  
Cancellation Fee TBD  

Substitutions are permitted. View cancellation policy.


Continental breakfast and deli buffet lunch will be provided to you at no additional cost.

NOTE: If you have any dietary restrictions or food allergies, please alert us at least one (1) week in advance of the course start date so that we can make reasonable accommodations. We cannot guarantee accommodations for special requests made after that time.


GPS systems may not recognize campus addresses. Even if they take you to the correct building, they will not take you to the assigned parking lot. Therefore, we strongly recommend that you use the directions we provide.

Extension Conference Center
18 Ag Extension Way, New Brunswick, NJ 08901
Directions, Parking Information & Map


  • All visitors must register their vehicles online with the Rutgers Department of Transportation Services. A link will be provided in your course registration confirmation email. Be sure to complete this important step prior to traveling to campus.
  • All Rutgers faculty/staff/students must use their regular Rutgers permit and park in the nearest lot assigned for their permit type.
  • Citations/fines will be issued for failure to comply with these policies.

Note: Pre-registration is required. We're sorry, but we cannot guarantee a seat, materials or meals for walk-in registrants. Location is subject to change; registrants will be notified in the event of a change.


Sorry, registration is not currently available for this course.

Would you like to be notified when the next offering is scheduled?
Here are 3 convenient ways to be added to our mailing list:
1. Click here to join our mailing list (please reference "Introduction to Plant Identification" or Course Code AL0249)
2. Call us at 848-932-9271, select option 3
3. E-mail us at ocpe@njaes.rutgers.edu

Program Questions? Contact Us!

Program Coordinator: Joe Canzano, 848-932-7317
Administrative Assistant: Beth Perez, 848-932-7483

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Comments about the Class from Past Attendees

"[The most useful aspect of the class was] Hands on identification of plants, not just in the classroom .... outdoor ID, seeing it firsthand"

"I learned the tools needed to go out in the field and identify trees/shrubs. Learning how to 'key it out!'"

"I now have enough know how to at least start identifying trees and shrubs"

"Great ways to remember particular details ... [and] what you're looking for"

"Very easy to understand what to do to get ID of plant"

"Learned so much! Thank you!"

"An emphatic yes! I can't wait to take more!" (in answer to this question: "Did this course stimulate your interest in the topic?")

"Can't wait to use it everyday."

"Packed full of non-stop info"

"I really feel this course will help day to day in my work."

Meet Instructor Ted Szczawinski

Instructor Ted Szczawinski Ted Szczawinski – Ted is a Licensed Tree Expert and professor of plant science and biology. He teaches students plant identification skills in a manner that's fun, interactive, and easy-to-understand!

Comments About the Intructor from Past Attendees:

"Ted is outstanding, He did a super job.  Everyone was engaged."

"Great teacher, very passionate"

"The best, a true gem and asset for Rutgers."

"Very knowledgeable and can modify his teaching style for varying knowledge levels of students. Highly recommend."

"Excellent instructor who encouraged questions and participation."

"Ted is enthusiastic and extremely knowledgeable. He presents all info in an 'understandable' manner."

"Wonderful teacher, makes it fun."

"Ted is an enthusiastic instructor who is extremely knowledgeable on the topic. He explains everything thoroughly."

"Very passionate, well done, a master!"

"Kept it lively and interesting. Very knowledgeable."

"Knows so much about plant ID. Great teacher on the subject."

"Wonderful teacher - makes it fun."

"Great instructor, learned a lot, very engaging!"

"Very interesting and informative. Personally inviting, makes for easy interaction."

"Very passionate about plants and what he teaches."

"Ted does a great job of getting whole group involved in activity."

Attention U.S. Veterans

This course is approved by the New Jersey State Approving Agency for Veterans Training for educational benefits through the GI Bill®. For more information about the GI Bill, click here.

GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government website at http://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill.