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Studying Nature’s Calendar

Articles: Studying Nature’s Calendar

Phenology is the study of plant and animal life-cycle events related to seasonal and climate changes. Gathering and recording data from year to year enables scientists, gardeners, and anyone curious about the world around them to observe how shifts in light, temperature, and precipitation ripple through the environment.

A conversation between Lorene Edwards Forkner, Editor of Pacific Horticulture and Colleen Hatfield, Professor of Biological Sciences, California State University, Chico.

This working drawing, developed with input from students, a garden design expert, and University Facilities, depicts plant placement in the future Chico State Phenology Garden.

LEF: How did the Phenology Garden at Chico State come about?

CH: Collecting long-term data is critical to understanding trends such as factors associated with climate change. Yet it’s challenging to find the resources and time necessary to compile this sort of information. I talked to my colleagues about developing curriculum activities that would provide students with opportunities to engage in current, relevant research and set up a venue fo...


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