s a series of catastrophic droughts over the past few years has made clear, a future of increasingly extreme weather events will make life harder for the world’s trees. A growing body of research is illustrating exactly why that is.
A new paper in the journal Nature
, co-authored by Yale’s Craig Brodersen
, highlights an emerging scientific field that uses 3D imaging and other technologies to better understand the inner workings of plants and trees — and what its findings have revealed about the vulnerabilities of these living organisms.
Brodersen, an assistant professor of plant physiology ecology at the Yale School of Forestry & Environmental Studies, has been at the forefront of this field, developing techniques to describe the hydraulic systems of plants and predict how a warming planet will likely affect these functions.
In an interview, Brodersen describes some of the important insights this field has revealed over the past two decades and the potential consequences for the world’s forests.
In this paper you review the latest research on the link between plant physiology and drought. What have scientists learned?