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Science on Sundays at the Botanic Garden

How do plants tell the time, who are the rainforest hitch-hikers and can we improve crop pollination by breeding better flowers?

Join Cambridge University Botanic Garden’s ‘Science on Sundays’ series of drop-in talks held on the 3rd Sunday of the month, starting this Sunday 20 March. The talks aim to bring the latest discoveries in plant science to a wider audience in a 30 minute nutshell.


Over the next six months, the Botanic Garden will be holding short, drop-in Sunday talks which will explore fascinating plant science topics from how plants tell the time to uncovering the mysteries of epiphytes – the ‘hitch-hikers’ of the rainforest world.

The 2016 series of informal plant science talks launches on Sunday 20 March 2016, during the Cambridge University Science Festival, with the Garden’s Director, Professor Beverley Glover, discussing whether we can improve crop pollination by breeding better flowers. Subsequent talks will then be led by some of the University’s leading plant scientists.

“We get very excited and inspired by plants here at the Botanic Garden and want to share the wonders of plant science with a wider audience – especially our regular visitors who might not be aware of the scientific role of the Garden. We are very fortunate to have world-leading plant research happening right here in the Garden, at the Sainsbury Laboratory and in the University’s Department of Plant Sciences, where our colleagues’ work is providing fascinating insights about plants and how they function.”
Professor Beverley Glover

The aim of the ‘Science on Sundays’ series is to bring this latest science to a wider audience by inviting people visiting the Garden to hear about the very latest discoveries and to invoke thought and discussion around the very real issues which face us today.

“Many of the greatest challenges facing the world today, including shortages of food and fuel as well as the effects of climate change, can only be addressed with the help of plant scientists. We’re proud that the Garden is part of this work, and delighted to be able to share it with our visitors.”
Professor Beverley Glover

The ‘Science on Sundays’ series is curated by Professor Glover, who studies the evolution and development of floral traits. Talks take place at 11am and 2pm lasting 30 minutes, on the third Sunday of each month between March and August.

Science on Sundays programme of talks:

Sunday 20 March 2016: `Can we improve crop pollination by breeding better flowers?’ Professor Beverley Glover, Director Cambridge University Botanic Garden

Sunday 17 April 2016: `Secret tenants – mircobes living in our plants’ Dr Sebastian Schornack, the Sainsbury Laboratory, University of Cambridge

Sunday 15 May 2016: `Epiphytes as rainforest hitch-hikers.’ Professor Howard Griffiths, Department of Plant Sciences, University of Cambridge

Sunday 19 June: `How plants measure time’ Dr María del Carmen Martí Ruiz, Department of Plant Sciences, University of Cambridge

Sunday 17 July: ‘Branching out – how and why’ Professor Ottoline Leyser, Director of the Sainsbury Laboratory, University of Cambridge

Sunday 21 August: ‘Rivers out of Eden: how biodiversity ebbs and flows through botanic gardens.’ ‘ Dr Sam Brockington, Curator, Cambridge University Botanic Garden

The ‘Science on Sundays’ talks are held in the Garden’s classroom, close to the Brookside entrance. Talks are free but normal garden admission charges do apply; there is no need to book, just drop-in to the Classroom at 11am or 2pm.

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This entry was posted on March 17, 2016 by in Culture, Goal 2, News, Research and tagged , , , .
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