Dr. Nathan Eylands joins the University of Minnesota this spring as the Department of Horticultural Science's newest faculty member.
Dr. Eylands received his Ph.D. from Cornell University where his dissertation explored anatomical, physiological, and photomorphogenic responses of lettuce and basil to far-red radiation under sole-source lighting. He worked on a transdisciplinary team funded by the USDA called Project LAMP (Lighting Approaches to Maximize Profits). The goal of this project is to help controlled environment agriculture (CEA) growers get more value from their lighting systems by adopting high-efficacy LED lights and implementing lighting strategies that reduce power consumption.
Prior to starting graduate school, Dr. Eylands spent several years as an operations manager for a hydroponic leafy greens facility. His industry experience gives him understanding of the plights facing CEA growers, large and small. He believes that bridging gaps between research and commerce is increasingly important in order to avert food scarcity and hidden hunger issues worldwide. Dr. Eylands hopes to uphold the vision and values of CFANS by creating tangible results that consumers can see and taste for themselves.
In his new role, Dr. Eylands will be responsible for utilizing controlled-environments to develop sustainable and economically viable production systems that support the selection, culture, and marketing of specialty plants. His research will focus on managing the light environment to optimize plant photochemistry, reducing resource consumption (i.e., energy, water, fertilizer), labor efficiency, and new crop development.
Additionally, Dr. Eylands has a teaching appointment that will begin during the 2024 spring semester. He will be taking on Plant Propagation (HORT 1001) and Scheduling Crops for Protected Environments (HORT 4141W). Here Dr. Eylands will be able to apply his practical skill set with his theoretical knowledge to help students understand important concepts at the core of Horticultural Science.
We are thrilled to have Dr. Eylands join the Department of Horticultural Science. Please join us in giving him a warm welcome!