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These slides are from my talk for the Royal Canadian Institute for Science, on April 6, 2017, at Mississauga Public Library, main branch: http://rciscience.ca/lectures/winter-2017-rcitalks/
Here is the summary:
'The Nobel prizewinner, Albert Szent-Györgi, reminded us that photosynthesis is “what drives life”, and “is a little current, kept up by the sunshine”. Every plant can take in carbon dioxide and water, and make simple sugars, while giving off oxygen. We will discuss some botany basics to enhance your appreciation of flowers, fungi, seaweed and bacteria, and this information will help you to plan your garden better. Dawn’s husband grew okra, ladies’ fingers, in their Toronto garden in 2016.
Dawn is a professor of Biology in the Faculty of Science at York University in Toronto, where she has taught since 1990. She was Director of IRIS, the university-wide Institute for Research and Innovation in Sustainability (2006-11 and 2012-14). At IRIS, Dawn’s mission was to develop, lead and support interdisciplinary research on diverse fronts. The Globe and Mail’s 2014 Canadian University Report singled her out as York University’s HotShot Professor. Dawn trained as an ecologist in the field of plant-herbivore interactions, and has carried out extensive field research in grasslands and forests, from temperate to Arctic regions. She holds a B.Sc. (Biogeography and Environmental Studies) and M.Sc. (Botany) from the University of Toronto. Her D.Phil. in Zoology, from Oxford University’s Edward Grey Institute in Field Ornithology, looked at sheep grazing behaviour. She is a grass biologist who urges people to think about digging up their lawns!'