Howlett Green Roof Project moving forward

Mary Maloney, director of Chadwick Arboretum, shared her vision of the Howlett Hall Green Roof Project in the latest issue of onCampus. We love the way it begins: “For the past two or three years, Mary Maloney has been seeing things that aren’t there.” Read the article at

Architectural drawing of Howlett Hall Roof Garden

Studing EAB resistance: Not futile?

Emerald Ash Borer (EAB), an invasive insect native to Asia, is infesting ash trees (Fraxinus spp.) in the northern U.S. and Canada. The news gets worse: all North American ash species are susceptible to EAB. Aiming to develop management strategies, recent PhD graduate Justin Whitehill and faculty advisor Pierluigi Bonello (Department of Plant Pathology) are studying the Manchurian ash, an Asian species with natural resistance to EAB. Using biochemical and molecular tools, they are working to identify biochemical markers associated with resistance. In the long term, they also hope that understanding ash resistance to EAB may lead to new tools such as bio-insecticides. For more info >

Algae blooms for clean fuel in Wooster

Visit Yebo Li’s Ohio State University lab anytime this spring and you will find an array of glass tubes filled with a light-green substance, endlessly bubbling inside a growth chamber. It’s algae. The same algae that later this summer will be growing in ponds at a Wooster farm, generating thousands of gallons of oil that will be turned into renewable fuel. Down the road, this green stuff may just be the building block of a new green industry in Ohio.

Li, a biosystems engineer with the university’s Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center(OARDC), is working with West Virginia-based Touchstone Research Laboratory in the development of innovative technology for efficiently and profitably growing algae in open ponds for production of fuels and other high-value, bio-based products. Also partnering in this unique research and business-incubation venture is Cedar Lanes Farms, a nursery and greenhouse operation located just a few miles from OARDC’s Wooster campus.

Funded by close to $7 million in grants from the U.S. Department of Energy, Touchstone will be testing this technology in four algae-producing ponds at Cedar Lane Farms — with an annual production capacity of some 2,000 gallons of oil, which will be turned into fuel. Construction is scheduled to begin this summer.

Read the full story here.


A Riverine National Park? Why not?

Donald L. Hey, co-founder of The Wetlands Initiative, will help Ohio State’s Olentangy River Wetland Research Park celebrate National Wetlands Month on Wednesday with a discussion on the opportunities for establishing a national park specific to inland freshwater rivers. The talk is 8:30-9:30 a.m. in the Heffner Wetland Building, 352 W. Dodridge St., just north of campus. For details, download the flyer at And don’t forget to celebrate National Wetlands Month: Hug a swamp!