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Arnold Arboretum

Our Scientists

With state-of-the-art research and growth facilities nestled alongside over 15,000 living specimens (~ 4000 taxa), the Arnold Arboretum is uniquely positioned to ask broad and important questions in plant biology. Our scientists’ research is as diverse as our living collection, ranging from organismic and evolutionary biology, molecular and developmental biology, plant physiology, and ecological, environmental and biodiversity studies.

Peter Del Tredici Senior Research Scientist Emeritus Peter Del Tredici is also a lecturer in landscape architecture at the Harvard Graduate School of Design. His research interests are wide ranging and mainly involve the interaction between woody plants and their environment. Recently, his investigations have expanded to include studies of spontaneous urban vegetation.
david_des_marais.jpg The research of David Des Marais, Research Associate, focuses on how plants interact with the environment and the variation in these interactions between species. Understanding how plants adapt to the local environment can increase our ability to conserve plant populations.
Michael Dosmann, curator of living collections, guides the Arboretum’s stewardship and development of its collection of temperate woody species. His work explores new strategies and tactics aimed at improving collections management and enhancing the use of Arboretum collections for research. Additionally, he conducts research on the physiological ecology of woody plants and participates in floristic efforts through domestic and foreign plant exploration.
Ailene Ettinger Ailene Ettinger, Arnold Arboretum Putnam Fellow, focuses on predicting the response and sensitivity of plants to a changing climate. By examining diverse trees growing in a common environment, she can identify functional traits that are important for success outside their historical conditions.
Dan Flynn- sq Dan Flynn is a Research Associate in the Wolkovich Lab. He is interested in understanding the processes in which plant communities assemble and disassemble and how this will influence the ability of ecosystems to adapt to global climate change.
Ned Friedman Arnold Professor of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology at Harvard University and director of the Arnold Arboretum of Harvard University, Ned Friedman is interested in the organismic interfaces between developmental, phylogenetic, and evolutionary biology. The Friedman Lab explores how patterns of morphology, anatomy, and reproductive biology have evolved through the modification of developmental processes.
Hopkins Assistant professor Robin Hopkins is interested in natural selection and the process of speciation. The Hopkins Lab studies color variation in Phlox with a growing focus on reproductive incompatibility between emerging species and understanding the key evolutionary forces at work.
Juan Losada Juan M. Losada is a postdoctoral fellow and Putnam Scholar in the Friedman Lab. He is interested in the biochemical communication events between the male and female during pollination and fertilization. Currently, he is focusing on the evolution of the nourishing behavior of the perisperm and endosperm.
Rebecca Povilus A PhD candidate working in the Friedman Lab, Rebecca Povilus is interested in the idea that molecular resources are important tools for connecting how changes at the gene and genome level affect developmental processes. She is currently focusing on how evolutionary changes during the development of the egg-producing structure could give rise to the wide array of egg-sac morphologies in angiosperms.
Photo_Federico_Roda-4 Federico Roda is interested in understanding the functional mechanisms of environmental adaptation in plants. As post-doctoral fellow in the Hopkins Lab, Federico is investigating the molecular basis of the evolution of reproductive isolation in the genus Phlox.
Faye Rosin The research interests of Director of Research Facilitation Faye Rosin bear on investigating how gene expression is regulated and the consequences of that regulation at the molecular, cellular, and developmental levels. Faye’s investigations at Harvard involve tracking thousands of genes to see how the transcriptional program of an entire organ has been modified to direct three key innovations in columbine flower development.
Jessica Savage Jessica Savage is interested in understanding how seasonal changes in vascular activity influence flowering and carbon allocation. As an Arnold Arboretum Putnam Fellow, Jessica is comparing xylem and phloem anatomy, physiology and function in precocious flowering species (those that flower before the leaves emerge) with related species that flower later in the season.
Cam Webb Senior Research Scientist and principal investigator Cam Webb studies the evolution and ecology of tropical plants, and is experimenting with new informatics and capacity-building approaches to plant inventory and taxonomy. Cam’s current research project, a collaboration with co-PI Sarah Mathews and funded by the National Science Foundation, focuses on the ecology, biogeography, and biodiversity informatics of trees in Indonesian forests.
Wolkovich Assistant professor Elizabeth Wolkovich is interested in how communities assemble and disassemble in light of global changes. The Wolkovich Lab focuses on testing and understanding underlying mechanisms using both theoretical techniques and field experiments to study how current and future plant communities are shaped.
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