News & events

15 years of experiments have overturned a major assumption about how thirsty plants actually are

In a new paper published in Nature Plants, we report on a natural secret that could ultimately be used to help plants thrive while using less water.

‘Dream’ discovery could sow crops better equipped to weather the climate change storm

Scientists from ANU and James Cook University have identified an "exquisite" natural mechanism that helps plants limit their water loss with little effect on carbon dioxide intake - an essential process for photosynthesis, plant growth and crop yield.

I spent a year squeezing leaves to measure their water content. Here's what I learned

How do you tell if your plants need water? Recently, I asked this question of a group of about 40 biologists at the Australian National University.


PS Seminar Series - Turning up the heat: How will climate change affect forests and crops?

12pm 6 Apr 2023
Rising atmospheric CO2 concentrations could reach >1000 ppm by 2100, increasing global temperatures 3-4 °C. Both elevated CO2 and warming affect photosynthesis, altering plant growth, survival, and crop yield and quality.

Event recordings

5 February 2021

Yiheng Hu, PhD Student, Rathjen Group, PS, RSB

Devastating fungal diseases threaten global food security and plant and animal populations, highlighting the need for rapid and accurate identification of fungal pathogens.

24 June 2020

Dr Megan Outram, Post Doc, Williams Group, RSB

Plant pathogens cause disease through secreted effector proteins, which act to modulate host physiology and promote infection. Often, effector proteins lack sequence identity to...

10 June 2020

Dr Florian Busch, Post Doc, Farquhar group, ANU

Photorespiratory metabolism is essential for plants to maintain functional photosynthesis in an oxygen-containing environment. Because the oxygenation reaction of Rubisco is...