Native Wildflowers Bank on Seeds Underground to Endure Drought

March 01, 2018
Native wildflowers were surprisingly resilient during California’s most recent drought, even more so than exotic grasses. But signs of their resilience were not evident with showy blooms aboveground. Rather, they were found mostly underground, hidden in the seed bank, according to a study from the University of California, Davis.

Rice Plants That Reproduce as Clones From Seed

December 12, 2018
Plant biologists at UC Davis have discovered a way to make crop plants replicate through seeds as clones. The long-sought discovery could make it easier to propagate high-yielding, disease-resistant or climate-tolerant crops and make them available to the world’s farmers.

Cloning Food Crops for Higher Yields: Venkatesan Sundaresan Wins Faculty Research Award

October 11, 2019
In December 2018, Distinguished Professor Venkatesan Sundaresan and his colleagues published in Nature a method that allowed them to produce clonal seeds directly from plants, bypassing the sexual reproduction process. Replicating this process in the lab could prove vital to providing the world’s farmers with high-yielding, disease-resistant or climate-resistant food crops.

Shivering Seeds: Using Gene Trees to Map a Weed’s Ability to Thrive

January 21, 2020
In a study appearing in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, UC Davis researchers used the staple plant model organism Arabidopsis thaliana, known commonly as the thale cress, to uncover the genetic mechanisms that control its seeds responses to chilly weather.