Monica Turner has made a career of studying ecosystem resilience in the face of ecological challenges, from severe forest fires and bark beetle outbreaks in Greater Yellowstone and the northern Rockies to climate and land use change in Wisconsin.
When the algal ancestor of modern land plants made the transition from aquatic environments to an inhospitable shore 450 million years ago, it changed the world by dramatically altering climate and setting the stage for the vast array of terrestrial life.
It's a cool and dusty morning on the Rosy-Lane farm, located just south of Watertown, Wisconsin. Lloyd Holterman creaks back in his kitchen chair with a cup of hot coffee in hand. A skid-loader hums outside.
Do you love your veggies? Would you like to help plant breeders make them taste even better?
It's no fun being a male moth in one of Shawn Steffan's cranberry research plots. When the time comes to mate, it's tough to find a partner.
Farmers who grow organic row crops such as corn and soybeans already have a number of successful weed-management tools at their disposal - but there's always room for more.
Ten thousand years ago, a golden grain got naked, brought people together and grew to become one of the top agricultural commodities on the planet.
In an effort to help improve the health of pastures owned by dairy farmers across Wisconsin and beyond, University of Wisconsin–Madison researchers have established a partnership with Organic Valley, the nation's largest organic farming cooperative, to study how to make pastures as productive, nutritious and sustainable as possible.
Clearing grasslands to make way for biofuels may seem counterproductive, but University of Wisconsin–Madison researchers show in a study today (April 2, 2015) that crops, including the corn and soy commonly used for biofuels, expanded onto 7 million acres of new land in the U.S. over a recent four-year period, replacing millions of acres of grasslands.
Even during a good year, soybean farmers nationwide are, in essence, taking a loss. That's because changes in weather patterns have been eating into their profits and taking quite a bite: $11 billion over the past 20 years.
Argentina might seem a long way to go for an environmental engineer seeking to better understand land use in Wisconsin. But there are some surprising parallels between the two countries' histories of land use and ecohydrology.
While the $35 billion U.S. organic industry continues to expand at a brisk pace, organic grain production is not keeping up with the growing demand for organic livestock feed and value-added food products, according to a new report on Wisconsin organic agriculture.
Considering the average age of a Wisconsin farmer is over 56 years old and the state has been losing around 500 dairy farms per year in recent years, experts say it's important to prepare young people to step into farm roles to help keep the state's $88 billion agricultural economy strong into the future.
In the heart of Wisconsin, a project is underway to produce energy from a resource in little danger of running low: cow manure, also known as "brown gold."
In 2014, the total net farm income in Wisconsin reached an all-time high of more than $4 billion, but agricultural experts at the University of Wisconsin–Madison are predicting some changes in 2015. Bruce Jones, a professor of agricultural and applied economics at the University of Wisconsin–Madison, will be among a handful of UW–Madison and UW-Extension experts to recap the status of Wisconsin’s agricultural enterprise in 2014 and discuss trends developing for 2015 at the Wisconsin Agricultural Economic Outlook Forum on Wednesday, Jan. 21.
When the time comes for Wisconsin’s organic farmers to decide which crops to plant next year, they’ll have a tasty new variety of sweet corn — with a particularly sweet name — among their choices. The new variety, called “Who Gets Kissed?,” is the first in a series of organic, open-pollinated sweet corns being developed through a plant-breeding project led by researchers at the University of Wisconsin–Madison and the Organic Seed Alliance (OSA). Farmers and professional breeders are also involved.
In a study published Wednesday, Nov. 19, in Nature, scientists at Boston University, the University of New Hampshire, the University of Michigan, the University of Minnesota, the University of Wisconsin–Madison and McGill University show that a steep rise in the productivity of crops grown for food accounts for as much as 25 percent of the increase in this carbon dioxide (CO2) seasonality.
In a new study published this month in the Journal of Applied Meteorology and Climatology, University of Wisconsin–Madison researchers highlight the urban heat island effect in Madison: The city’s concentrated asphalt, brick and concrete lead to higher temperatures than its nonurban surroundings.
Bent and tossed by the wind, a field of soybean plants presents a challenge for an Asian lady beetle on the hunt for aphids. But what if the air - and the soybeans - were still?
The mechanical force that a single fungal cell or bacterial colony exerts on a plant cell may seem vanishingly small, but it plays a heavy role in setting up some of the most fundamental symbiotic relationships in biology. In fact, it may not be too much of a stretch to say that plants may have never moved onto land without the ability to respond to the touch of beneficial fungi, according to a new study led by Jean-Michel Ané, a professor of agronomy at the University of Wisconsin–Madison.