Arboretum scientists have pinpointed how mother plants of a water lily species take control of rearing offspring, part of a 25-year quest to understand how mothers and fathers interact in the creation of a flowering plant seed.
Supported by a Sinnott Award, Callin Switzer with colleagues Robin Hopkins and Stacy Combes examined the unique method of pollination in mountain laurel. With the anther filaments acting as catapults, the pollen reaches speeds of 8 miles per hour, making it one of the fastest moving plants in the world! Abstract» Harvard Gazette»
Scientists estimate that food supplies will need to double by 2050 to meet demand. In greenhouse experiments conducted at the Arnold Arboretum, Harvard researchers discovered a way to more than double crop size by introducing a soil bacterium that converts nitrogen from the atmosphere into robust and sustainable fertilizer.
Most wine is produced from the same 12 varieties of grapes, a huge concern for growers in the face of climate change. Published in Nature Climate Change, Elizabeth Wolkovich, Ignacio Morales-Castilla, and colleagues discuss how the other ~1100 varieties of grapes and the diversity of their attributes may play an important role in the future. Read more»
New research in Nature Plants by Jessica Savage, Juan Losada, and Missy Holbrook finally answers the long standing question of how trees maintain efficient sugar transport as they grow taller. They found that the phloem structure, the vascular tissue that transports carbohydrates, changes with increasing height. abstract» Harvard Gazette »
The Arboretum is pleased to announce that you now have a choice in how you watch Arboretum Research Talks. Starting on Monday at 12:10pm, you can attend a talk in person or you can watch live on the Arboretum's YouTube channel. Research talks dive deep into the data and are free and open to the public.
Austin Garner is a PhD student in the Hopkins Lab starting this Fall. Austin was awarded both the Herchel Smith Graduate Fellowship from Harvard University and the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship to support his doctoral studies. Congratulations Austin!
The early evolution of flowers remains something of a mystery. As part of her Master's research, Kristel Schoonderwoerd, PhD Candidate in the Friedman Lab, joined a large international team to reconstruct the ancestral flower based on DNA and floral characteristics of known flowers. The results are published in Nature Communications. more» abstract»