Geophytes are species of plants that can go dormant to underground storage organs when conditions are unfavourable. Common examples include daffodils, tulips and other bulbs, and tuberous plants like potato and carrot. The species that I’m studying are all native to Australia and include Microseris lanceolata (Yam daisy), Bulbine bulbosa (Bulbine lily) and Arthropodium milleflorum (Pale vanilla lily).
My current research will determine how well these species survive and recover from drought periods of 30-60 days, and how their morphological characteristics and water use strategies change. This will increase the understanding of how differing drought tolerance abilities relate to plant traits, and hopefully identify species that are ideal for green roofs.
In the future I hope to pursue a Phd into the wonderful, if somewhat neglected, world of Australian geophytes.
Bulbine bulbosa whole plant after 30 days of drought and 28 days of recovery watering.
Supervisors: Dr Claire Farrell
2010 – 2014 University of Melbourne, Bachelor of Environments, major in Environmental Science (Honours)