Project at a Glance

Title: A demonstration of the effects of smog on ornamental and home garden plants

Principal Investigator / Author(s): Ching, Francis

Contractor: California Arboretum Association

Contract Number: a933-188

Research Program Area: Ecosystem & Multimedia Effects

Topic Areas: Ecosystem Impacts, Impacts


The Air Pollution Greenhouse display was operated during the 1992 Smog Season and is currently open for the 1993 Smog Season. 1993 marks the seventh year of the display. This report summarizes the scope of the work, methods used and results of the operation of the display from April 1992 to May 1993.

During the months of April 1992 through October 1992, approximately 17,000 people visited the display. The response of the visitors to the display was overwhelmingly positive. Outreach programs during the year included lectures, tours of the greenhouse, and media coverage. information about the results of the effects of smog on ornamental and home garden plants was disseminated to various organizations and individuals. 65 different species of plants were grown in the 1992 Smog Season. Of the 65 species, 44 had indeterminate smog sensitivities. 30 out of the group of 44 developed symptoms. 12 of these plants had medium to high levels of damage.

During the 1993 season a selection of native California plants are being grown. Native California plants were requested by visitors and also represent a category of plant, that has not been widely studied for air pollution sensitivities. 60 different species are being grown and although it is too early to determine results, three of the California plants have developed high levels of injury symptoms. The educational and outreach programs in 1993 are being developed like during 1992. An Independent Student Projects Program has been initiated with Arcadia High School and 12 students are currently doing research on various air pollution issues from the effects of air pollution on plants, to making educational posters and developing solutions to local air pollution problems.

For questions regarding this research project, including available data and progress status, contact: Research Division staff at (916) 445-0753

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