Phenotyping of flora of Svalbard

  • Svalbard Adventfjorden
    Boris Zimmermann

Phenotyping of flora of Svalbard by vibrational spectroscopy of pollen and seeds

Svalbard is an isolated archipelago characterized by an arctic climate, permafrost and scarce vegetation adapted to extreme conditions. The islands have rather rich flora in relation to its high latitude, dominated by mosses, forbs, graminoids and prostrate shrubs. The growing season in the Arctic is very short, so the anticipated rising temperatures and an extended growth season could have large consequence on the domestic species. Changes in plant genotype, phenotype and phenology are expected as response to the selection pressure of climate change. 

Phenotyping of flora of Svalbard

Svalbard Science Forum - Arctic Field Grant

RiS No: 10113
Project No: 246125/E10
Period covered - start date: 16/02/2015
Period covered - end date: 30/10/2015
Project Administrator: Boris Zimmermann
UNIS assistant: Pernille Bronken Eidesen
NMBU assistant: Siri Fjellheim
Field assistant: Martin Paliocha

Due to unique habitat, plant populations of Svalbard present a perfect experimental pool for investigation of reproduction fitness and strategies in the extreme environment. The fieldwork in Svalbard has covered two separate periods: 1) sampling of pollen belonging to plant (predominantly Poales) populations in the Isfjorden area in mid-July, and 2) sampling of seeds, from the same plant populations in early September. Biochemical composition of pollen and seeds will be determined by vibrational spectroscopy in order to assess acclimation and adaptive reproductive traits of Svalbard’s plant populations.


Sampling locations: Endalen (upper left) and Colesdalen (upper right) in July 2015; Adventdalen (lower left) and Platåberget (lower right) in September 2015.

Published 26. November 2015 - 17:39 - Updated 5. May 2017 - 14:48