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University of Illinois plant biology professor Katy Heath and her colleagues found that long-term nitrogen fertilizer use disrupts the mutually beneficial relationship between legumes and soil microbes.

Long-term nitrogen fertilizer use disrupts plant-microbe mutualisms

Author: Diana Yates, Life Sciences Editor

Published Date:February 23, 2015

When exposed to nitrogen fertilizer over a period of years, nitrogen-fixing bacteria called rhizobia evolve to become less beneficial to legumes – the plants they normally serve, researchers report in a new study.

Published Date: February 23, 2015


Scientists have historically underestimated the potential productivity of the earths land plants, researchers report in a new study.

Study: Earth can sustain more terrestrial plant growth than previously thought

Author: Diana Yates, Life Sciences Editor

Published Date:August 26, 2014

A new analysis suggests the planet can produce much more land-plant biomass – the total material in leaves, stems, roots, fruits, grains and other terrestrial plant parts – than previously thought.

Published Date: August 26, 2014


Drones  unmanned aerial vehicles  scout wheat on the universitys South Farms.

Drones give farmers eyes in the sky to check on crop progress

Author: Sharita Forrest

Published Date:June 4, 2014

This growing season, crop researchers at the University of Illinois are experimenting with the use of drones – unmanned aerial vehicles – on the university’s South Farms.

Published Date: June 4, 2014


Palmer amaranth grows very fast, germinates throughout the season, produces lots of seeds, can tolerate heat extremes and is very adaptable, researchers report.

Palmer amaranth threatens Midwest farm economy, researchers report

Author: Diana Yates, Life Sciences Editor

Published Date:June 3, 2014

An invasive weed that has put some southern cotton farmers out of business is now finding its way across the Midwest – and many corn and soybean growers don’t yet appreciate the threat, University of Illinois researchers report.

Published Date: June 3, 2014


Gemechu Olana, a professor at Adama Science and Technology University, left, shares SAWBO animations with Ethiopian farmers.

Education by animation: Videos reaching tens of thousands of Ethiopian farmers

Author: Diana Yates, Life Sciences Editor

Published Date:May 19, 2014

Teff, a nutritious grain, is a staple in Ethiopia. Its seeds are tiny – so small that some say its name was derived from the Amharic word for “lost.” Now, thanks to a creative educational initiative based at the University of Illinois, much less of the precious teff will be lost in Ethiopia.

Published Date: May 19, 2014