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Cornell ‘Scent’ Expert welcomes spring at Canada Blooms


March 12, 2009
By CNW Group Ltd.

robertragusoMarch 12, 2009 – Dr. Robert Raguso, scent expert from Cornell University, will welcome
spring with his presentation "Wake Up and Smell the Roses: Floral Scent
and its Impact on Pollinators and People" at Canada Blooms on March 20.

robertragusoDr. Robert Raguso, scent expert from Cornell University, will welcome
spring with his presentation "Wake Up and Smell the Roses: Floral Scent
and its Impact on Pollinators and People" at Canada Blooms on March 20.
The inaugural speaker in Vineland research and Innovation Centre's new
speaker series, Dr. Raguso has spent his life in passionate pursuit of
floral scent. His presentation will examine the intriguing secrets
flowers hold within the folds of their perfumed petals.

Who: Dr. Robert Raguso, Associate Professor, Department of Neurobiology and Behavior, Cornell University

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What: Dr. Raguso will be available for interviews the morning of
March 20. Join Vineland Research and Innovation Centre at the launch of
their Annual Speaker Series with Dr. Robert Raguso as he lectures on:
"Wake Up and Smell the Roses: Floral Scent and its Impact on
Pollinators and People"

Where: Canada Blooms Main Stage, 800 Level, Metro Toronto Convention Centre, South Building, 222 Bremner Blvd., Toronto, ON

When: March 20, 2009 at 7:00 p.m. (First Day of Spring)

Dr. Raguso describes how flowering plants and their animal pollinators
inadvertently stock our tables with food, our medicine chests with
drugs, and inspire our art, literature and popular culture with their
beauty. He notes that collectively, the ecological dance between
flowers and pollinators represent one of the great expressions of
biological diversity on planet Earth. In deserts, grasslands,
rainforests and alpine meadows across the world, they are the glue that
binds together entire ecosystems. Without figs and fig wasps, there are
no toucans, hornbills, fruit bats or any of the thousands of rainforest
insects that survive on the bounty of ripe fruit, or the hundreds of
migrating birds who raise their young on such insects.


Fast Facts
:

Who would guess that the clove and ginger scented Bulbophyllum
orchids of Malaysia are code-breakers, whose odors mimic the sex
pheromone of Asian fruit flies? These flowers provide the potential to
trap thousands of agricultural pests without pesticides, a strategy
known in Integrated Pest Management as "mating disruption".

Likewise, who would imagine that the basic principle behind the
repellence of insects by marigold odors would suggest an
environmentally friendly way to repel pests by "pushing" them towards
"throw-away" plants situated alongside crops?

Who would guess that commercial roses don't smell as sweet, because
domestic breeding for color compromises the biochemical pathways that
make fragrances?

Or that ancient cycads would embody the axiom "the dose makes the
poison" by turning up the scent – and the heat – on their pollinators
to ensure that they carry pollen to a female cycad cone and complete
the cycle of fertilization?

Find out more by joining Vineland Research and Innovation Centre at the Canada Blooms' Main Stage March 20 at 7:00 p.m.


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