Developing tools for precision horticulture: Manipulating plant growth to reduce in-field crop variability.PhD Studentship (three and a half years funding)
Technology is providing growers of field crops with new tools to measure and manage their crops using precision input management systems. The project will develop plant-targeted technologies that can manipulate individual plant growth rates, using whole head lettuce and tender stem broccoli as examples of transplanted, high value leafy vegetable crops. The student will:
• Identify treatments to alter relative growth rates of plants from transplant to maturity.
• Establish the underlying physiological basis of the treatment(s).
• Optimise timings and application rates of the treatment(s).
• Demonstrate the practical application of growth rate manipulation in lettuce and brassica crops.
The project is funded by the Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board, G’s Growers Ltd and Barfoots of Botley Ltd and involves two months on placement at each of the industry partners during the study period. This project will give the student training and experience in plant physiology, agronomy, soil and crop assessments and spatial statistical analyses as well as experience of the technical challenges of commercial crop production.
The studentship includes tuition and bench fees and a tax-free stipend at the current RCUK rate for 2020-2021 (£15,245 per annum).