26 Feb 2020
Carlota Gonzalez Noguer was awarded one of the 2019 David Miller Travel Bursaries to attend the International Conference on Integrative Plant Physiology held in Sitges, Spain in October 2019. Here, Carlota writes about her experience attending the international conference and the opportunities her trip provided.
‘The “International Conference on Integrative Plant Physiology” took place in Sitges (Spain) between 27-29 October 2019. It comprised oral and poster presentations from researchers from all around the world. The conference programme covered a range of topics including plant response to environmental stresses, regulation of flower and fruit development, seed dormancy, biostimulants and biofertilisers.
‘I am a second year PhD student at the University of Reading, investigating the impacts of climate change on apple dormancy break. Climate change is predicted to impact adversely on UK apple production as warmer temperatures will affect the dormancy cycle, which determines the timing and quality of bud break. By combining modelling and experimental work, I aim to develop an improved model for bud break prediction and to obtain a better understanding of the physiological mechanisms controlling dormancy and chilling requirement.
‘My study encompasses various fields of study, including statistical modelling and plant physiology. Having focused mainly on the effects of temperature on dormancy during the first two years of my PhD, in the next two years I am interested in investigating the physiology behind dormancy break. Attending this conference gave me the opportunity to learn about research currently being carried out around the world in relation to the physiology of bud break and flowering, as well as to gain knowledge about different techniques I can use for my own work.
‘I presented a poster at the conference, showing some results obtained during the second year of my PhD. During the poster presentation I was able to discuss my research and received feedback from scientists from different countries, including Spain, Germany and the UK. I also had the opportunity to discuss some ideas for future experiments and to meet other researchers working in similar fields. During the conference I learned about new techniques, met researchers from all around the world and had a chance to discuss my present and future work with many of them. I returned to the UK having gained relevant knowledge for my PhD and with a better understanding of some key factors I need to consider in my research.
‘Overall, attending the “International Conference on Integrative Plant Physiology” was a fantastic experience and I would like to thank the SCI horticulture group for the David Miller Award, which helped to fund the trip. Furthermore, being invited to present at the David Miller event and having the opportunity to meet everyone involved in the Award was a very enjoyable experience. I would encourage any early career researcher to apply for the award as it doesn’t only give you the opportunity to travel, but also to be part of a fantastic network of researchers, horticulturists and professionals working within the horticulture industry.’
Carlota Gonzalez Noguer