How to make a tomato: the genetic basis of flower and fruit diversity
December 2, 2014 – 6:30 pm @ The New York Botanical Garden
Presented by: Dr. Amy Litt, University of California, Riverside
Abstract: The past 20 years has seen an explosion of new data connecting evolutionary changes in gene sequence, gene function, and gene number to changes in plant morphology. Simple genetic changes underlie complex differences in morphology such as flower symmetry and leaf shape. Other variations in structure and function have more complex genetic bases, and these can be traced through evolutionary time by studying the changes in key genes and gene groups that regulate the development of plant organs. One such gene group, AP1/FUL, regulates key aspects of flower and fruit formation including, among others, floral identity and fruit structure. Our work has provided evidence that increases in gene number and shifts in sequence and expression in this gene lineage have played important roles in the diversification of flower structure in the core eudicots and the shift from dry to fleshy fruit development in the nightshade family (Solanaceae).
Cashews, Mangoes and Poison Ivy, Oh My!
Sunday March 1, 2015 – 4 pm @ The New York Botanical Garden
Presented by Dr. Susan Pell, Science and Public Programs Manager, U.S. Botanic Garden, and outgoing President of the Torrey Botanical Society
Once Upon a Time: Wily Nightshades and the Rebranding of Botany
Tuesday April 7, 2015 @ 6:30 pm - The Central Park Arsenal
Presented by Dr. Chris Martine, David Burpee Professor in Plant Genetics & Research and Director of the Manning Herbarium at Bucknell University
Abstract: The Australian bush tomatoes of the genus Solanum have been described as “gender-bending” plants with a penchant for manipulating bee visitors. Putting this system into an ecology and evolution framework has resulted in novel understandings of plant reproductive biology and led to the discovery of new species. It has also helped to generate the sort of dynamic stories that the teaching of botany often requires – including the use of new/social media to enhance the storytelling. At a time when botanical education and interest in plants each appear to be in decline, finding good stories and embracing new ways of sharing them are critical steps in the “rebranding” of Botany.
Tuesday May 5, 2015 @ 6:30 pm - The Central Park Arsenal
Presented by Dr. Eric Schuettpelz , Research Botanist & Assistant Curator, National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution, Department of Botany
The December & March lecture will be presented at:
Arthur and Janet Ross Lecture Hall
The New York Botanical Garden
200th Street and Kazimiroff Blvd, Bronx, NY 10458
Get directions »
MetroNorth Harlem line trains stop at Botanical Garden Station. Subway D and 4 trains have stops on Bedford Park Blvd., and the connecting bus 26 stops just outside the Botanical Garden’s Mosholu entrance.
All other lectures will be presented at:
In extremely inclement weather, you can email the Program Coordinator, Uli Lorimer at firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line “Torrey Lecture Cancelation Inquiry” to inquire about lecture changes.