I haven’t been to any offline international conferences since 2020. I attended Mathematical Models in Ecology and Evolution conference (MMEE) and a further 2 days of LEMONTREE project meetings during heatwave in UK. This time I couldn’t be more excited to meet all these scientists in person and discuss interesting questions with them!
I felt really energetic and enthusiastic at the conference despite the torturing heatwave. Not only I had the chance to present my work, but meet and discuss with these familiar faces I’ve seen only via Zoom for 2 years! This in-person interaction really brought everyone together and created a chance for us to know each other more.
At MMEE conference, I presented my recent work on “Environmental controls of leaf carbon and nitrogen stoichiometry”. This work explored the variations of leaf C, N and C:N ratio along environmental gradient. We extended optimality model for leaf nitrogen from area basis to mass basis with a step forward by incorporating the theory of leaf mass per area. Then our optimality model can well predict the variation of leaf C:N ratio, which provides a new route for improving leaf C:N ratio presentation in vegetation model. After presentation, I received some questions about prediction and timescale. And we continued the discussion during lunch on the grass.
Previously I didn’t plan to attend LEMONTREE project meetings, but Sandy convinced me to stay and present Tsinghua group. I was glad to stay and learnt more about what other groups are doing from LEMONTREE project. Sungchang from Seoul introduced their remote sensing toolkit, Catherine from Imperial College talked about VOCs and photosynthesis, Maoya from UC Berkeley shared her research on plant water use strategies. We also had really productive discussion session to talk about the current knowledge and challenges in land surface models (see more detailed discussion content: https://research.reading.ac.uk/lemontree/lemontree-optimality-meeting-21st-to-22nd-july/).
Of course, a proper supper will not be missed (thanks Sandy, Colin and Rhona for organizing this)! While we enjoyed this amazing meal, everyone chats about funny things and laughed. What a wonderful day!