Waterlogging is a major constraint to barley production and is expected to become a more significant problem as the frequency of flooding events is set to increase with climate change. Heritage barley lines have seen a renewed interest as brewers and distilleries search for unique selling points. Those maintaining heritage varieties at the Department of Agriculture Food and the Marine (DAFM) have noted that many have larger root systems than modern counterparts. As waterlogging is a stress primarily associated with roots, a larger root system may provide an advantage. This project aims to characterise the response of Irish Heritage Barley cultivars to waterlogging stress using image-based phenotyping in both field and controlled conditions.
I began working with waterlogging stress in Barley during my final year project in the Plant Biochemistry Lab in Maynooth University. I started working on this project during a taught MSc in plant biology and biotechnology at University College Dublin. I am now into my second year of my PhD at the Crop Stress Interactions lab in UCD.