Plant Crop Science

Rice FieldsWe aim to provide knowledge, insights and tools that can be used to understand how plants adapt to their environment in both natural and managed systems and how crops can be improved for the benefit of national and international agriculture.

We bring together established expertise in genetics, translational genomics and breeding with fundamental topics in contemporary plant science that include developmental biology (both above and below ground) and the interactions between plants and their biotic and abiotic environments. We work across scales, bridging molecular, cellular, whole organism and community levels, and study biological and molecular mechanisms and processes in both the laboratory and the field.

Our research is founded on both the development and application of genome-enabled genetics in crops, crop relatives and genetic models and the use of current approaches in plant science to address mechanistic questions in development, composition and architecture, mineral and trace element acquisition, abiotic stresses, and pathogen and symbiont interactions (including these organisms themselves).

We aim to understand how plants grow and develop, how they respond and adapt to external conditions and how they can be improved for the benefit of existing and emerging opportunities in agriculture. Exploring the potential of natural and induced biodiversity for trait gene discovery, and for traditional and biotechnological approaches to trait improvement underpin the Crop / Plant pillar.