Phys-Fest 2

Holden Forests & Gardens conducts nationally recognized research in plant and environmental sciences while fostering the next generation of scientists. In accordance with our mission, our Holden Arboretum campus in Kirtland, Ohio hosted Phys-Fest 2 on July 15 – 19, 2018.

The Arboretum was chosen as the location for this plant eco-physiologist training program because of its 3,000 acres of diverse natural forested areas, as well as the unique opportunities the Murch Canopy Walk and Kalberer Emergent Tower structures offer.

More than 50 scientists from universities across the country spent five days at the Holden Arboretum, learning new data collection and communication skills. The program had three goals:


Light and heat energy from the sun fuel plant growth. Phys-Fest research teams will conduct experiments to ask: how do canopy energy gradients impact the speed and efficiency of plant growth at different levels within the canopy?


Veteran researchers will train teams of students in basic measurement techniques for plant water use, photosynthesis and environmental monitoring. Phoenix Experimental Designs will provide training in tree climbing and cable traverse techniques.


Training workshops will focus on professional communication skills and engagement with local stakeholders. Video, print and social media projects will allow the public to experience the excitement of canopy research and highlight the role of the canopy walk and emergent tower as working research tools.

We would like to thank our sponsors for helping to make this program possible.