Chicago Botanic Garden scientists learn more about how climate change affects plant populations. Climate change is causing plant species to flower earlier around the globe. Some plants experience severe frost damage to their flower buds when they flower too early, but that may not be as bad as drought associated with climate change.
Chicago Botanic Garden scientist Amy Iler, Ph.D., lead scientist on the project, said, “We were surprised to find that frost damage causes little harm to the populations. Instead, the big challenge facing these plants is increased mortality due to water stress under climate change.”
This research was recently accepted for publication in the peer-reviewed Journal of Ecology. Research like this helps us understand the ways in which major environmental changes, like climate change, threaten plant species.