This year, I have the opportunity to act as a research mentor for a student in the Semester in Environmental Science program here at the Ecosystems Center at MBL. A student, Melissa, expressed interest early in the program in researching leaf level processes, and beginning a few weeks ago we have started to formulate her research plan. Unfortunately, researching field-grown plants in November is difficult, but we are going to focus on two pine species - White Pine and Pitch Pine, which are both found locally in Cape Cod.
Last week, Melissa and I went out to Crane Wildlife Management Site in North Falmouth, and collected some replicate 2-3 year old pine seedlings. Using these, Melissa plans to create a factorial treatment design that looks at the impact of growth temperature, water availaibility in both species over a month long time course in different aged needles.
Some pictures from our collection, which occured the night of the "supermoon", below: