Dispatch from the TGI Consortium: Teamwork Takes Flight at New Field Research Site

Photo collage of 2023 TGI Fellows.

by Kristina DeYong, Communications Specialist at the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center

New Ground for Growth

It has been just over a year since the Danforth Center acquired the 140-acre farm that became the home of the new Danforth Center Field Research Site. Located in St. Charles, this historic farm is being used as a space for scientists to develop field-based experiments to understand how crops interact with their environment.

Smiling folks on a farm.

Farm Manager & Field Research Operations Coordinator Terry Beeler and Senior Research Scientist Molly Hanlon on the Field Research Site in 2023. 

In addition to space for field experiments, the Field Research Site is home to several barns and a historic home built in 1883. While some renovations are necessary to make the farm a functional home base for field research, many of the historic elements of the space will be maintained. For example, the historic farmhouse will eventually be restored as a home base for on-site offices, and care will be taken to retain its charming features.

“The scale of field work necessitates a lot more space for everything, from growing to storage,” says Senior Research Scientist Molly Hanlon. “We’ve worked to design something that will meet those needs. It’s going to be a huge undertaking, but it will be worth it.”