Does diversity of its floral neighborhood affect pollination of a model prairie plant?

Year: 2018
Project Description:

Tallgrass prairie has been reduced to just a fragment of its original size. Does an Echinacea plant produce more seeds if it’s in a highly diverse remnant compared to a less diverse remnant of the same size?

In west central Minnesota, the model prairie perennial, Echinacea angustifolia (purple coneflower), grows in a variety of remnant habitats. We know the nearness of other Echinacea plants affects reproductive success of Echinacea, but we don’t know whether diversity of other surrounding flowering plants affects pollination. Come help us investigate this question while gaining knowledge and skills in prairie plant identification, experimental design, and plant reproductive biology. 

rural west central Minnesota
Fieldwork Conditions:
Bees, Insects, Pollen