Blanchette Visits Alumni at University of Florida
Recently Bob Blanchette was at the University of Florida for a Ph.D. dissertation defense and met with Jason Smith and Zane Grabau, two departmental alumni now on the faculty at the University of Florida.
Jason Smith (Ph.D. 2005, advisor Bob Blanchette) holding two trees he propagated that are “out of this world”. These trees are cuttings from a tree that grew from seed brought to the moon and back on one of the Apollo missions. Jason has several greenhouses and a huge nursery where he is growing some of the world’s most unusual trees and carrying out research on Laurel Wilt, pitch canker, and many other diseases affecting Florida’s trees.
Zane Grabau (Ph.D. 2015, advisor Senyu Chen) is a new assistant professor in the Department of Entomology and Nematology. He is involved with field-based research and extension related to plant-parasitic nematodes of row crops (cotton, peanuts, and others) and some horticulture crops (carrots, potatoes, and others) in North Florida.
His research is showing how agricultural practices for managing plant-parasitic nematodes affect soil ecology based on non-parasitic nematodes.