I went yesterday to check on plants that have been almost a year outside, and what a surprise! Nights still go below zero in Helsinki but there were several Austrian A. lyrata plants that were growing new flowering shoots! Maybe it really is spring now 🙂
A visit to Prof. Alex Widmer’s lab in Zurich is now over and I have returned with many new ideas back to Helsinki. The A. lyrata plants are still flowering in the greenhouse so I will be able to test my new hypothesis! Plans for the next growing season have also grown – there will hopefully be more species in the greenhouse then – besides A. lyrata, also A. halleri and A. arenosa.
In September this year I have started a new project, funded by the Finnish Research Council, on speciation genetics of outcrossing relatives of Arabidopsis thaliana. The title of my research plan is “Understanding forces driving development of postzygotic reproductive isolation in Arabidopsis lyrata“, but I plan to use also A. halleri and A. arenosa, depending on how well I will manage to produce hybrids between these species. Currently I have between population hybrids of A. lyrata growing in one of the greenhouse compartments of University of Helsinki. This is a home page of this project, where I will update recent progress or other Arabidopsis or speciation related posts.