Department News


Professor Lawren Sack awarded an NSF Grant

Professor Lawren Sack, with collaborators Tom Buckley (Sonoma State University) and Diane Pataki (UC Irvine) were awarded an NSF grant for their proposal "Mechanisms for the decline of leaf hydraulic conductance with dehydration, and plant- and environment-level impacts". For this 3-year project, $573,966 has been awarded to the UCLA team and $913,892 across all the collaborator institutions. For diverse urban tree species in Los Angeles, the project will combine new experimental hydraulics and tree sapflow measurements, nano-microscopy techniques and computer simulation modeling to determine the mechanisms for leaf and plant drought responses and differences among species in water use. The team will determine how these responses depend on the leaf venation, stomata, and other tissues within the leaf, and further scale up this information to allow improved estimation of urban forest water use and how it depends on tree species, especially critical for conservation of water resources. The broader educational impacts include collaborative data collection with under-represented students, to improve participation and appreciation of urban ecophysiology and ecology.