RHS and Cranfield University recruit UK's first garden water scientist

Friday 20 July 2018

With this summer set to be one of the driest on record, the RHS has announced it is collaborating with Cranfield University to recruit and train the UK’s first garden water scientist.

This new role responds to climactic changes that are resulting in more extreme weather events and aims to better prepare the country’s 27million gardeners for periods of drought and flood which put pressure on plants, people and wildlife.

The water scientist will explore ways to improve water provision in gardens by adopting new technologies, developing management strategies and encouraging behavioural change among gardeners.

Director of Science and Collections at the RHS, Prof. Alistair Griffiths said: “Climate change is resulting in more frequent hot and dry spells and are projected to increase in the coming years. This could lead to less water being freely available in the growing season to support optimum growth so it’s important we look at how we can maintain our gardens, and the wildlife they support, for the future.”

Head of Cranfield Water Science Institute, Prof. Paul Jeffrey said: “As water resources come under additional strain both farmers and gardeners will need to change their behaviours and make better use of new scientific understandings and innovations. Cranfield is working with the RHS to generate new insights into water efficient practices and is supporting the implementation of a suite innovative, cost effective, impactful water management technologies and methodologies.”

The water scientist will be based at RHS Garden Wisley where a new Centre for Horticultural Science and Learning will open in 2020. More information about the role is available here. Applications are open until midnight on 31st July 2018.
 

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Notes to editors

About the RHS: The Royal Horticultural Society was founded in 1804 by Sir Joseph Banks and John Wedgwood to inspire passion and excellence in the science, art and practice of horticulture. Our vision is to enrich everyone’s life through plants, and make the UK a greener and more beautiful place. We believe everyone in every village, town and city should benefit from growing plants to enhance lives, build stronger, healthier, happier communities and create better places to live.

We held our first flower shows in 1820, were granted a Royal Charter in 1861 and acquired RHS Garden Wisley, our flagship garden, in 1903. From our first meetings in a small room off London’s Piccadilly, we have grown to become the world’s largest gardening charity. At our gardens and shows and through our scientific research, publications, libraries and our education and community programmes we inspire a passion for gardening and growing plants, promote the value of gardens, demonstrate how gardening is good for us and explain the vital roles that plants undertake.

The RHS is committed to bring the joy of gardening to millions more people, inspire the next generation of gardeners and invest in the future to safeguard a £15 billion industry employing more than 300,000 people. We are entirely funded by our members, visitors and supporters. RHS membership is for anyone with an interest in gardening. Support the RHS and help us secure a healthy future for gardening. For more information call: 020 3176 5820, or visit www.rhs.org.uk/join

RHS Registered Charity No. 222879/SC038262

For more information please contact Laura Scruby in the RHS press office: laurascruby@rhs.org.uk / 0207 821 3060

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About the RHS

The RHS believes that gardening improves the quality of life and that everyone should have access to great garden experiences. As a charity we help to bring gardening into people's lives and support gardeners of all levels and abilities; whether they are expert horticulturists or children who are planting seeds for the very first time.

RHS membership is for anyone with an interest in gardening. Support the RHS and secure a healthy future for gardening. For more information call: 0845 130 4646, or visit www.rhs.org.uk

RHS Registered Charity No. 222879/SC038262