When people find out that I have a MS degree in weed science they usually end up asking me if I can come take care of the weeds in their yard. I usually tell them probably not, but that I can tell them which weeds they have – which is half the battle. Weed identification has been a major part of my job – first as the weed biology and management lab instructor, and then as a presenter at the annual Utah Weed Control Association and Utah Weed Supervisors Association annual meetings.
This post originally appeared on Gardening Know How as an invited guest blog. The version here is the same, with the addition of a couple more photos.
I have long been fascinated by seeds, as my elementary school self with her shoebox full of horse-chestnuts (Aesculus hippocastanum) can attest. It turns out this fascination served me well when I became a graduate student. As part of my research on different methods to control downy brome (Bromus tectorum), I counted thousands and thousands of downy brome seeds to document the effects of those different methods. If you’ve ever wondered what a plant science graduate student does, you can bet that counting seeds is part of it.
Walking across campus this week, I just couldn’t help but pick up a few horse chestnuts.