Chicago Botanic Garden
lkr626 at gmail dot com
I am a 2nd year PhD student working with Stuart Wagenius. I work with long-lived prairie plants in Minnesota and diverse annual plant communities in Southern California. My research focuses on understanding the timing of events in plant communities as it relates to plant diversity, and plant fitness. I'm particularly interested in understanding the mechanisms behind how plant diversity might influence plant fitness through either competition for pollination or other resource limitation.
In Southern California, diverse annual plant communities germinate in the winter and bloom in early spring. With so many different species of flowers open simultaneously, competition for pollination may be fierce. But, some species may be able to self-fertilize, reducing their reliance on pollinators for reproduction. However, scientists don’t know which species are capable of self-...