Remember the post I wrote about our little Tansy plants – the ones that I prepared for an upcoming field experiment that will be the core project of the new PhD candidate in our team, Lina. While she’s arranging practical matters for the field work, today I finalized the experimental design for that experiment. The core had been established and pretty much fixed from the start, but some aspects depended on the selection of our lineages, and the success of the cloning procedure. Success rates were high overall, but also varied between the lines.
Now, since today we know exactly which plant in the greenhouse will end up where in the field, and we can now start organizing them plot-by-plot, so that we can pack them accordingly. They will also get a nice label attached so that each plant’s identity will be clear from the start. Oviously, you don’t want to do these sorting activities in the field. Better come prepared.
In the mean time, the field, which is located within the confines of the well-known Jena Experiment, is being prepared by yet another colleague, Nafiseh. Her PhD work revolved around the same plant species, and she kindly agreed to help us out at exactly the right time. Given that Jena is several 100 kms away, it is very convenient having someone locally to help out with such aspects. Today, Nafiseh prepared the soil and removed weeds, before later this week she will lay out the plot formation.
On the 17th of this month, we will start planting out our babies. We are pretty much all set. I have to admit though, that I’m still nervous every time I start a new experiment.