Merging Systematics and Ecology to Study Soil Specialization in California Jewelflowers
From Jeff Layne
Faculty, UC Davis
How are certain plants supported only by certain soils? Are plants that are soil-specialized poorer competitors – or are they better defended? Dr. N. Ivalu Cacho studies California Jewelflowers to search for the answers to these and related questions. The jewelflowers tend to grow in bare environments with thin layers of soil. Dr. Cacho and her researchers field-collect raw soils from sites where the species grow, and from sites where the plants do and do not have native grass neighbors of different species. Underlying her work is Dr. Cacho’s interest in exploring the Earth’s extensive biological diversity.
Recorded: March 6, 2015