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Undergraduate Research Fellows Blog

  • Those of us reading this who are biologists, ecologists, or conservationists may have had the chance to work with equipment that is expensive to purchase, difficult to operate, and not something you can afford to accidentally ruin while in the field.


  • Fine-roots absorb water and nutrients from soil and are therefore vital to plant survival. My summer research sought to answer: How do fine-root traits vary across gymnosperm species?
  • Spending a summer at The Morton Arboretum was equally as good of an opportunity for photography as it was for research. Here I talk about my experience taking photos at The Morton Arboretum and how photography can enhance your (and others') appreciation of the natural world.
  • The Family Across the Ocean You Can Find


    The Morton Family, as they’re called, has pass that title down to all people that The Morton Arboretum has the pleasure to have as part of it. This group of people has show me that the family doesn’t have to be blood related, because they will treat you as one of their own. You are not alone and can always count on them.

  • Seeing the City for the Trees

    Many of the other students on this REU program go outside into the field to take measurements, however my work is all done in front of a screen. Now, I love the work I do. My computer enables me to draw complex conclusions from my data and visually represent it with maps, but it does mean I spend eight hours sitting in one place. Fortunately, we have had the opportunity to travel to other REU sites throughout Chicago with this program.

  • While measuring root traits for my research project, I observed that tree roots differ wildly in appearance. It reminds me of why I fell in love with in plant biology.
  • A small look to my experience so far!
  • What Does Soil Mean to You ?
    Commonly known as it’s unappealing nickname “dirt“ soil provides the basis for all terrestrial life on earth. Urban soils provide poor conditions for tree growth. What can be done ?
  • Greetings from the prairie! Here is an introduction to what we have been doing over the summer! :)


  • From Element to Titan: Equations Come to Life
    Adventures in the forest bring new meaning to numbers in a spreadsheet.

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