Apologies, I am quite a newbie to botany, however I have started a job which requires some fieldwork, of which I am a complete novice. I read the NVC booklet and other papers and wished to establish species richness and species diversity of a meadowland. I was using 2m quadrats, and quickly realised that counting grass species, even once identified, is pretty hard. I went back to my bosses who seem to think I should just stick with it and count every grass species in 5 quadrats (they are not botany experts either!).
My question is, since the grass species are so mixed up at ground level, how do you tell which is a single plant to count accurately? Is it normal to actually count each plant in a 2m square on grassland, or is there a more common way of estimating species richness and species diversity? I do not wish to appear lazy in front of my supervisors, so if needs be I will go out and count them, but I will seriously question the accuracy of my study. Would not relative frequency/density, or Domin scale be more relevant?
Any help would be greatly appreciated!