Agronomy and Horticulture Seminar Series

Fall 2022 Seminars

Seminars will be in person, streamed live and recorded at 3:30 p.m. CST/CDT in Keim Hall, Room 150, unless otherwise noted.

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December 2, 2022

Irrigation Across the Great Plains

DEREK HEEREN, associate professor and irrigation engineer, Department of Biological Systems Engineering, University of Nebraska–Lincoln
SALEH TAGHVAEIAN, associate professor and irrigation and water resources engineer, Department of Biological Systems Engineering, University of Nebraska–Lincoln

Irrigation plays a critical role in agricultural production across the Great Plains. A water resources perspective underscores the need for good irrigation engineering and management. Irrigation research and extension activities in Oklahoma and Nebraska will be discussed, along with the status of irrigated agriculture in Nebraska and opportunities for collaboration.

December 9, 2022

Omic Approaches to Decipher Crop Responses to Arthropod Pests

LISE PINGAULT, senior research associate, Department of Entomology, University of Nebraska­–Lincoln

Understanding innate plant defense mechanisms against arthropod pests will provide more information about genes, metabolites and/or regulatory pathways in crops, which will be extremely valuable for plant engineering approaches. In the Molecular Plant-Insect Interactions Lab, multi-omic approaches to characterize crops defense mechanisms in response to chewing and sap-sucking insects, as well as mites, is used.


September 9, 2022

Exploring Co-learning in Agroecology

CHARLES “CHUCK” FRANCIS, professor emeritus, Department of Agronomy and Horticulture, University of Nebraska–Lincoln

Francis will present on co-learning — an educational strategy to build ownership among teachers, students, farmers and administrators in the learning process. He will discuss how to involve everyone in decision-making to discover optimum course content and activities and how to evaluate supporting and hindering forces in making this transformational change in education.

September 16, 2022

What’s Light Got to Do With It? Exploring the Role of Plant-reflected Light in Crop Yield Loss and Weed Management

ANDREW KNISS, department head and professor of weed science, Department of Plant Sciences, University of Wyoming, Laramie

Early-emerging weeds negatively affect crop yield potential, but the mechanisms by which weeds reduce crop yield are not fully understood. Yield loss is typically attributed to resource depletion by weeds. In this presentation, Kniss will summarize several years of research on shade avoidance responses in sugarbeet and the subsequent impacts on yield.

September 23, 2022

We Are Growable: Developing Systems Thinking Through Games

JENNY KESHWANI, associate professor, Department of Biological Systems Engineering and a science literacy specialist, Nebraska Extension, University of Nebraska–Lincoln

Game-based learning is a pedagogical approach for engaging diverse students in locally relevant conservation issues. Keshwani will discuss how game experiences help youth explore complex agroecosystems, develop systems thinking habits of mind, and practice making personal and societal decisions related to sustainability and conservation. 

September 30, 2022

Transforming Agriculture Research Through Digital On-farm Research

LAURA THOMPSON, extension educator, Nebraska Extension, University of Nebraska–Lincoln

Advancements in digital agriculture tools have increased the scale and complexity of agricultural challenges which can be addressed through on-farm research. On-farm research has the potential to center farmers in the discovery and innovation process and integrate the research, extension and teaching missions of the university. Thompson will discuss the opportunities to leverage the changing landscape of on-farm experimentation drawing examples from the 30+ years of on-farm research in Nebraska Extension.

October 7, 2022

Communicating Science to Public Audiences

HEATHER AKIN, assistant professor, Department of Agricultural Leadership, Education and Communication, University of Nebraska–Lincoln

Science communication is increasingly acknowledged as a strategy for engaging public audiences with complex and sometimes controversial science topics. Akin will discuss principles, practice and research related to science communication, while acknowledging the challenges and opportunities it poses in Nebraska and beyond.

October 14, 2022

Attaining Efficacy, Crop Safety, and Sustainability in Cropping Systems: What’s New in the Weed Management Toolbox?

RAMDAS KANISSERY, assistant professor and weed scientist, Department of Horticulture Sciences, Southwest Florida Research & Education Center, University of Florida, Gainesville

Kanissery's presentation will cover novel and alternative approaches for tackling a problem that has troubled crop production forever – weeds. From weed identification apps to herbicide spraying robots, weed management has advanced rapidly in adopting new technologies in the last few decades. He will discuss innovative tools such as precision herbicide placement, steam application, etc., as weed control strategies in citrus orchards and vegetable production systems.

October 21, 2022

Tackling Nitrogen as Necessary Evil: Impacts on Nebraska’s Cropping System and Water Quality

JAVED IQBAL, assistant professor and extension specialist of soil nutrient management and water quality, Department of Agronomy and Horticulture, University of Nebraska­–Lincoln

Efficient nitrogen management is imperative in improving crop production while protecting the environment. Iqbal will share his team’s collaborative research and extension efforts with stakeholders in improving nitrogen use efficiency and groundwater quality in Nebraska.

November 4, 2022

How Do They Survive That? Stress Response in Agrostis

KEENAN AMUNDSEN, professor of turfgrass genetics, Department of Agronomy and Horticulture, University of Nebraska­–Lincoln

The Agrostis genus includes some of the highest valued turfgrass species, such as A. stolonifera and A. capillaris. These species differ in their functional quality and innate response to various stresses. Genomic and transcriptomic tools were used to characterize differences between these species, providing useful targets for introgression breeding.

November 18, 2022

Using Incentive-based Management Tools to Help Achieve Groundwater Sustainability Goals

RENATA RIMSAITE, senior program manager, Daugherty Water for Food Global Institute, National Drought Mitigation Center, University of Nebraska

Rimsaite's presentation will focus on agricultural groundwater markets — an incentive-based water management tool used in Nebraska that can provide flexibility and help reduce drought risk for farmers. Groundwater markets in Nebraska are highly variable across the state, and they offer lessons to other regions facing similar groundwater management challenges.