Plant Technology Research

The Plant Growth Technology Hub provides a broad range of plant growth facilities for current and future research.

Horticultural unit
Plant Growth Technology Hub

The Hub provides a broad range of growth conditions, including a large climate-controlled glasshouse facility, a large roof-top glasshouse, several indoor climate-controlled growth rooms and multiple growth cabinets.

These resources are available to all researchers in the School of Biosciences and associated University Research Institutes. They are also available to researchers in other Schools by special request.

Facilities

Our facilities are spread across three University buildings.

Our Talybont complex comprises two large heated glasshouses which are divided into four isolated bays (13.5m x 3.3m) and offer a range of lighting options (natural light, HID, LED).

The complex currently houses the School of Biosciences plant specimen collection, dedicated GMO growth areas and teaching facility for practical classes.

We also have 13 additional small glasshouses for non-climate controlled growth, as well as a large outdoor area for plant cultivation.

The University Main Building is home to the following Plant Growth Technology facilities:

  • A rooftop glasshouse with temperature and lighting control, and HID lighting (mercury vapour / metal halide/high-pressure sodium). This glasshouse is suitable for GMOs and is currently used for cultivation of tobacco.
  • Fitotron/ Sanyo plant growth cabinets. These four units feature photoperiod, temperature and humidity control and fluorescent lighting. They are suitable for cultivation of Arabidopsis thaliana and other small plants.

The Sir Martin Evans Building is home to three medium-sized temperature-controlled growth rooms.

The largest of these rooms has high-intensity discharge (HID) lighting for cultivation of larger plants such as oil-seed rape (Canola) and tobacco. It is also suitable for GMOs.

The other two growth rooms have fluorescent lighting, temperature and photoperiod control and semi-automated watering. They are suitable for GMOs and small plants such as Arabidopsis thaliana.

The building also houses a number of growth chambers and cabinets.

Future developments

We are planning some exciting developments to further improve the research capabilities of the Plant Growth Technology Hub.

These include the development of a hydroponic growth facility that will enable the cultivation of plants in soil-free conditions using inert growth media and nutrient solutions.

We are also currently trialling several LED lighting systems as alternatives to fluorescent and HID lights. Notably, the Attis series of LED lighting systems from Phytolux have been used for cultivation of plant species including Arabidopsis, Tobacco and Marchantia polymorpha.

Contact us

Hub Lead:

Dr Simon Scofield

Lecturer

Email:
scofields@cardiff.ac.uk
Telephone:
+44 (0)29 2087 4918

Deputy Hub Lead:

Dr Barend de Graaf

Dr Barend HJ de Graaf

Lecturer

Email:
degraafb@cardiff.ac.uk
Telephone:
+44 (0)29 2087 4766

Greenhouse Manager:

Lyndon Tuck

Technician

Telephone:
+44 (0)29 2062 8546