Department of Plant Science

Offering Penn State degrees in agroecology, golf course turfgrass management, horticulture, landscape contracting, and turfgrass science.

Plant Science News

Margaret Hoffman, assistant professor of landscape contracting
College of Agricultural Sciences welcomes landscape contracting professor
April 3, 2018
Margaret Hoffman recently joined Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences as assistant professor of landscape contracting.
Daniel Stawowczyk, a landscape contracting major at Penn State New Kensington and outdoor enthusiast, hopes to create his own landscaping company.
Scholarship will aid Penn State New Kensington student in reaching goals
March 26, 2018
Daniel Stawowczyk, a landscape contracting major at Penn State New Kensington, was the recipient of a scholarship from Pucketos Garden Club that will help support his studies and dream of one day creating his own landscaping company.
Differences in bean plant growth observed by researchers were striking. Image: Jonathan Lynch Lab / Penn State
Root discovery may lead to crops that need less fertilizer
January 19, 2018
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Bean plants that suppress secondary root growth in favor of boosting primary root growth forage greater soil volume to acquire phosphorus, according to Penn State researchers, who say their recent findings have implications for plant breeders and improving crop productivity in nutrient-poor soils. The increase in the length of the root is referred to as primary growth, while secondary growth is the increase in thickness or girth of the root. Because root growth confers a metabolic cost to the plant, bean plants growing in phosphorus-depleted soils that send out longer, thinner roots have an advantage in exploring a greater volume of soil and acquiring more phosphorus.
Landscape contracting student blazes his own trail
December 1, 2017
UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Elliot Redding, a junior in landscape contracting, is taking full advantage of his time at Penn State to dig into the world of agriculture and find a career he is passionate about. From landscape competitions to networking to mountain biking, Redding is getting hands-on experience doing what he loves. Redding’s interest in landscape contracting began with a job he held between high school and college with Boyer Nurseries and Orchards Inc., a small family-owned business in Biglerville, Pennsylvania. “Working for Boyer helped me realize that I really did want to go into horticulture as a career,” said Redding. He had the opportunity to work with a group of people who were always willing to answer his questions and help him learn about the industry. It also gave him a wide range of experiences including working with design plans, observing day-to-day operations and spending time in different parts of the company.