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The FIU Institute of Environment and Department of Biological Sciences present the 2021 Spring Semester Plant Talk Series.

We invite you to join us for informal discussions on research presentations, travelogues, virtual field visits and more! This series will explore the research happening in the world of plants and encourages conversation amongst colleagues and scientists about the work being done.

For more information or to inquire about giving a presentation of your own, please contact Dr. Javier Francisco-Ortega or Dr. Alan Franck.



Talks for the 2021 spring semester will begin on Wednesday, January 27th and will occur every other Wednesday through April 7th. Each talk with begin at 12PM EST until 1PM EST. Please see below for more information about individual talks.

Please email to recieve the Zoom meeting information in order to participate in these webinars.


  • Plant Talk 1

    Date: Wednesday, January 27, 2021 @ 12PM EST - 1PM EST

    Title: The FIU Arboretum: A Glimpse into FIU’s Future Flora

    Speaker: Amelia Leon (FIU Office of University Sustainability; BS, FIU Department of Biological Sciences)

    View this talk's recording ->

  • Plant Talk 2

    Date: Wednesday, February 10, 2021 @ 12PM EST - 1PM EST

    Title: Partnering to Safeguard South Florida’s Most Vulnerable Plant Species Through Strategic In-situ and Ex-situ Conservation Measures

    Speaker: Lydia Cuni (Field Biologist, Fairchild Tropical Botanic Garden's Conservation Team)

    View this talk's recording ->

  • Plant Talk 3

    Date: Wednesday, February 24, 2021 @ 12PM EST - 1PM EST

    Title: David Fairchild, the USDA, and the Building of a Caribbean Botanic Garden Network: Insights from the Cienfuegos Botanical Garden, Cuba

    Speaker(s): Javier Francisco-Ortega (FIU Institute of Environment & FIU Department of Biological Sciences) & Rosalina Montes Espín (Jardin Botanico de Cienfuegos)

    This talk is jointly arranged with the Cuban Research Institute and the Kimberly Green Latin American and Caribbean Center.

  • Plant Talk 4

    Date: Wednesday, March 10, 2021 @ 12PM EST - 1PM EST

    Title: Conservation of South Florida Orchid Mycorrhizal Fungi

    Speaker: Ellen Garcia (Agroecology Graduate Program, FIU Department of Earth and Environment)

  • Plant Talk 5

    Date: Wednesday, March 24, 2021 @ 12PM EST - 1PM EST

    Title: Seeing Green: Expanding Botanical Experiences Across Undergraduate STEM Courses

    Speaker(s): Melissa McCartney & Jessica Colon (FIU Department of Biological Sciences & STEM Transformation Institute)

  • Plant Talk 6

    Date: Wednesday, April 7, 2021 @ 12PM EST - 1PM EST

    Title:  Tropical Leguminous Cover Crops as a Fertilization Strategy for Averrhoa carambola

    Speaker: Ariel Freidenreich (PhD Candidate, FIU Department of Earth and Environment)