Decoding the Redwoods: As Threats to California’s Giant Redwoods Grow, Their Salvation Might Be in Their Complex Genetic Code

[Summary from the Washington Post]: As California’s climate changes to one of extremes, the only coast redwoods on the planet are in peril. Just 5 percent of the redwoods that stood before 1849 are still alive. Scientists are mapping the coast redwood’s genome, a genetic code 12 times larger than that of a human being….

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Plant and Environmental Sciences Doubles Up on Green Certifications

Quick Summary The Plant and Environmental Sciences building at UC Davis earns LEED gold for operations and maintenance The first-ever BREEAM certification for in-use academic building in United States The goal with BREEAM ‘is to build sustainable practices into our operations across campus’ UC Davis’ Green Building Team has news to shout from the rooftop…

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Cooperative Extension is Key to Unlocking Public Engagement with Science

Summary: The need for scientists — and ecologists, in particular — to engage with the public is well known. This article addresses how the U.S. land-grant mission and the Cooperative Extension system have initiated, developed, and implemented models of public engagement for the past 100 years. Cooperative Extension engages through trusted and established relationships, and…

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Genome Project Will Restore Health of Coast Redwood and Giant Sequoia Forests

Some trees are better at surviving drought, fire, pests, and diseases than other trees. By identifying the genes responsible for these adaptations, scientists can compile a scalable database that will aid resource managers as they plan long-term conservation strategies, particularly as the climate changes. Professor David Neale, UC Davis Department of Plant Sciences, showed in…

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Earth’s Oldest Trees in Climate-Induced Race up the Tree Line — Bristlecone pine trees in the Great Basin are losing the game of leapfrog with the limber pine

Summary: Tree-line species are shifting in the Great Basin of the U.S. Limber pine trees are ‘leapfrogging,’ slowly, over ancient bristlecone pines upslope. If limber pine trees block bristlecones from advancing upslope, bristlecones could face local extirpations. *     *     *     *     * Bristlecone pine and limber pine trees in the Great Basin region are like…

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Combining Vegetables and Livestock in Cambodian Farming

New research supported by the Horticulture Innovation Lab at UC Davis aims to help farmers in Cambodia better integrate growing vegetables, raising livestock and maintaining healthy soil — all in the same place. “By understanding the interactions between horticulture and livestock systems, we can help farmers make better use of agricultural inputs such as fertilizer…

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How Much Water Do Landscape Plants Need?

To meet California’s mandatory landscape ordinances for water conservation, Loren Oki, Karrie Reid, and Jared Sisneroz are conducting UC Landscape Plant Irrigation Trials to determine water needs for landscape plants. The goal is to develop water conservation landscapes in three locations and study their long-term performance. Regulations for landscape water use California’s Model Water Efficiency…

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Water Conservation: The New ‘Normal’ – Drought Irrigation Strategies

Since water conservation will be an ongoing practice in California, University of California scientists are continually developing practical information for agriculture, rangelands, urban landscapes, and animal production. This series of publications was produced by UC experts throughout California. Published by UC ANR, authors include professors and Cooperative Extension specialists in the Dept. of Plant Sciences…

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Carbon Reduction, the Unrealistic Paris Agreement, and Alternatives for California

Climate scientists from three countries have determined that the carbon reduction goals set at the Paris Agreement in 2015 are not feasible. Regardless of whether the U.S. remains part of the Paris climate accord, scientists at the University of California, Davis, are developing additional agricultural methods to offset increases in atmospheric greenhouse gases, thereby reducing…

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