Tucson Botanical Gardens


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Series Title: The Wisdom of Trees: Rooted in Science

The College of Science, Laboratory of Tree Ring Research brings a special forest themed Science Café to the Gardens this spring.  Engage with UA professors in a casual setting to learn about their latest research. You can get to know the faces behind the science, have opportunities to ask questions and deepen your understanding of the world around you.

Series special Offer!

*Guests of the Science Café are invited to stroll the gardens after the talk, courtesy of the Tucson Botanical Gardens (Open until 8:00 PM)

*It is strongly suggested that guests make reservations in advance, if they would like to dine @ Café Botanica, https://tucsonbotanical.org/cafe


Spring 2019 Science Café Presenters:

Thursday, January 31, 2019 at 6:00PM

Restoring Ecosystems in the Climate Change Era

Dr. Lynn CarterPresenter: Don Falk, Professor, School of Natural Resouces and the Environment; Joint Appointments in the Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research and the Institute of the Environment, University of Arizona

Ecosystems around the world are facing unprecedented stresses from climate change and direct human impacts. What can we do to help nature survive this difficult period? The tools of ecological restoration will play a big part, but adaptations are needed for the challenges of a changing world. Using examples from the Southwest, we will explore the possibilities for restoration as a practice of ecological healing and hope. 

Don Falk's Science Café Talk



Thursday, February 7, 2019 at 6:00PM

Unique Trees Tell the Stories of Past Civilizations

Dr. Alfred McEwenPresenter: Kevin Anchukaitis , Associate Professor, Earth Systems Geography, University of Arizona

History isn’t only written in books or carved in stone monuments - it is recorded in the annual rings of trees growing over thousands of years that have witnessed the rise and fall of countless civilizations.  Here we explore how unique trees growing in the highlands of Vietnam and on a lava flow in the middle of Mongolia reveal that past climate change influenced some of the history’s most significant ancient societies.

Kevin Anchukaitis' Science Café Talk


Thursday, March 7, 2019 at 6:00PM

Monsoon Stories from the Sky Islands

Bashar RizkPresenter: Soumaya Belmecheri, Research Associate, Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research, University of Arizona

Sky island Ponderosa pines record information of water availability in the soils and atmosphere. In the desert southwest, each growing season is marked by a dry period, during which trees experience stress. However, once the North American Monsoon starts, they resume their growth and act as a carbon sink in response to humid conditions. These interactions are understood through the study of oxygen isotopes of annual rings and inform us about the reliance of tree growth on summer monsoon and how it changed over time. 

Soumaya Belmecheri's Science Café Talk


Thursday, April 4, 2019 at 6:00PM

From Russia with Heat: An Arctic River and Its Tree-Ring Tracks

Tod LauerPresenter: Dave Meko, Research Professor, Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research, University of Arizona

The great Eurasian arctic rivers affect Earth’s global climate system with their supply of fresh water and heat to the the Arctic Ocean. Russian and University of Arizona researchers are teaming up to search for evidence of large floods in rings of larch, pine and other tree species along the Ob River.


Dave Meko's Science Café Talk


Part 1:

Part 2:

Thursday, May 2, 2019 at 6:00PM

Climate Change and Forests - Can History Predict the Future?

Tod LauerPresenter: Margaret Evans, Assistant Professor, Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research, University of Arizona


As trees grow, they remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere, substantially mitigating climate change. But their ability to continue to do so in the future, with warming temperatures and rising drought stress, is a matter of great scientific debate. Tree rings are a rich source of information on how tree growth responds to climate variation, that is used to forecast future forest productivity given projections of future climate conditions.  


Coming Soon: Margaret Evan's Science Café Talk


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