Text and video by Bin Liu, pics by Samuel Liga
/Editor´s note: It´s been silence in the blog throughout summer, as we all had a lot of field and lab work (below there´s a glimpse of it). But we´re back now!/
Summer 2018 is definitely one of the hottest summers in the history of “cold” Estonia. Of course we wouldn’t miss this opportunity to do some cool things in the lab and in the field. Last year we completed some good work with galled oak leaves (Jiang et al. 2018). This time around, we moved to Cirsium arvense, which is one well-known plant species attracting varieties of gall-inducing parasites. In the field next to the forest, the blooming Cirsium arvense plants seemed all identical owing to their beautiful purple flowers. On coming close to them, it is fascinating to find out that some of them have big galls formed on their stems! Our purpose would be to measure the possible volatiles emitted from those galled plants. In the last three weeks, we have accomplished an intensive measurement and harvest campaign in our lab. During this period, nearly one hundred plants were collected in the field and sent to the lab for further analysis. An interesting part of it is that we named each working day and the respective plants collected with a team member’s name, e.g. Hasan_Plant_No. 1; Eve_Plant_No. 5; Sam_Plant_No. 8. At last, we have collected up to 100 fresh samples and 500 dry samples. All I can say here and now is, we expect exciting results!
Last but not the least thing, we give credits to all our team members: Samuel, Hassan, Chika, Eve, Sandra, Anna, Tiina, Ülo and other colleagues that are not mentioned here but in one way or the other contributed to the success of this round of experiment. Thanks a lot for the great effort you put in making this work a productive one.
Please, watch a self-made video of one of the harvest sessions we had in the lab. It is truly a hard work!