Facility Information | Plant and Pollinator Center

Facility Information

Building

The PPC is located in the east wing of Mehl Hall at Gateway Research Park- North Campus (Browns Summit, NC), approximately 20 minutes north of UNCG main campus. 

 

Indoor Facilities

Field lab: The field lab space is designed as the entry point where faculty and students can process samples (e.g. plants, soil, insects) without tracking dirt or contaminants into the molecular space. The space contains two humidity, temperature, and light controlled incubators, a large walk-in humidity, temperature, and light controlled incubator, a walk in cold room,  drying ovens, large sinks, storage, and bench space. This is an excellent lab for students and faculty to work together to sort, measure and analyze field samples.

 

Molecular Research Lab: The molecular lab space allows real-time analysis of data at the PPC. Most of the research and teaching performed at the PPC involves a molecular component (i.e. characterization of genetic and other cellular aspects of microbes, plants and animals). This lab provides a sterile work environment for analyzing and characterizing field samples at a molecular level. The lab is used for day-to-day molecular research at the PPC. In addition to research, this space can be used for undergraduate and graduate courses in biology when there is a field component and molecular techniques are needed for demonstration and teaching.

 

Community Engagement Room: This classroom is the meeting room for all collaborative, teaching, and outreach activities for the PPC. This classroom can be used for teaching, including core courses in the biology curriculum as well as undergraduate and graduate level research courses. Faculty working at the PPC have their research group meetings in this room. In addition, this is the room where the community will be invited for workshops and outreach events. Potential community organizations who will use this room will be county beekeepers, farmers, audubon groups, master gardener groups, and local K-12 schools and organizations, both locally and nationally. In addition, the community engagement room can be used for meetings and conferences with collaborating scientists and industry employees that utilize the facilities and/or collaborate on research projects.

Outdoor Facilities

Apiary: Currently around 30 honey bee hives are located on campus. As the the PPC develops we plan to maintain a larger number of hives for research, teaching, and outreach.

Garden plots: A football and baseball field are available for creating pollinator gardens and research field plots (see Future Vision section below).

Greenhouse: The foundation and resources for a research greenhouse are available on campus. However, the greenhouse is not usable in its current state (see Future Vision section below).

Future Vision for the PPC

With the help of donors in addition to future grant funding we have a grand vision for the PPC to be a state of the art facility for plant and pollinator research. To reach this goal we need to focus on the following 5 initiatives:

  • Purchase state-of-the art molecular equipment for the molecular laboratory
  • Install observation hives in the field lab and community engagement room for research and outreach purposes
  • Restore and updated the existing greenhouse so that it is usable as a research facility
  • Prepare and convert the football and baseball fields into pollinator gardens and plant research plots
  • Make accessible pathways for researchers and visitors to move from the field sites to the indoor research facility