Summer Summary

What a great summer of research! It’s hard for me to believe it’s coming to an end. I am so excited to have had the opportunity to work in and learn from a variety of research environments, including the lab, the field, and the greenhouse. We started the summer with a fantastic field trip to Blandy Experimental Farm, and, after a long day of field research, we watched hundreds of fireflies put on a light show for us. I remember standing in the firefly field in total amazement – a feeling that occurred with many new discoveries this summer.  This trip highlighted a lot of my favorite themes from the summer – teamwork, the beauty of nature, hard work, and (of course) studying milkweed.

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The Final Days – Blog Post 7

We harvested 25 experimental plants on Thursday, August 1. We harvested even more plants over the weekend of August 2, for a grand total of 75 plants harvested. Throughout the harvests, we noticed some general trends. First, the roots with the highest experimental treatment (8 larvae) seemed to have the most damage. We could usually find one live larva feeding on these roots, which I always found exciting. The larvae were only about the size of my fingertip and about twice as big as when we introduced them to the plants. At introduction, the larvae were a golden color, but, at harvest, they were a creamier color. I am so interested in the final analysis of all the data we took to see how/if it all relates to each other. I am also really thankful to students in Dr. Puzey’s lab for volunteering to help us with the big harvests on Thursday and Friday!

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Tent of Nations 2019 [2]: Research Goals and Interests (June 7)

[to see my bibliography, please go here: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1La6vZm8vfqfxbtBhwB3xcz0uM53QZ6bFRMzqxL199iQ/edit?usp=sharing]

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Tent of Nations 2019: Where it Began

I want to preface my blog posts with a reason why I am publishing them all now, because it is an important part to understanding the travels and research and how I approached my travel. In July, I traveled to the West Bank to stay with a Palestinian farmer and his family, along with fourteen international volunteers. Together we ran a summer camp for Palestinian children in the Bethlehem area at the farm called Tent of Nations. If I were to have “publicly” discussed my travel plans, due to an Israeli law passed in the Knesset in 2017, I could potentially be stopped, questioned, and turned away from entrance into the country, disallowing me to do the research I had hoped to. While I did not publicly support BDS and while Tent of Nations does not publicly support BDS, overstepping Israeli law is not uncommon for Israeli authorities, so I decided not to take my chances. I can tell you that I was deemed the highest security risk and was thoroughly searched and questioned while leaving from the airport in Tel Aviv on the 29th–more on that in a later post, though. I’ve been journaling throughout the experience and I am excited to share what I’ve learned and seen, and which directions I want this project to go.

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