Tropical Ginger
Specht in Greenhouse with Students


Welcome to the Specht Lab!

Tropical Ginger

The Specht Lab focuses on studies in Plant form and function. 
We use traditional morphological and developmental techniques combined with molecular genetics, comparative genomics and evolutionary biology to study the natural diversity of plants and to help better understand the forces creating and sustaining this diversity.  Our research incorporates elements of systematics, developmental genetics and molecular evolution to study the patterns and processes associated with plant speciation and diversification.  We are part of the Berkeley Natural History Museums (including the UC/Jepson Herbaria and the UC Botanical Garden) and take advantage of living and preserved collections to advance our research in plant systematics, biogeography, and developmental evolution.

Costus phylogeny publication voted best paper in Systematic Botany this past year!!

Former Specht Lab member Shayla Salzman receives the 2016 Grady L. Webster Award in publication from the American Society of Plant Taxonomists for her paper "Spiraling into history: a molecular phylogeny and investigation of biogeographic origins and floral evolution for the genus Costus."

PhD Student Joyce awarded an ASPT Graduate Student Grant !

PhD Student Joyce awarded an American Society of Plant Taxonomist Graduate Student Grant to support her work on vascular cambial variants in Paullinieae (Sapindaceae)

Specht Lab undergraduates represent at campus-wide Honor's symposia

Undergraduate Researcher Michelle Liu presents her work at the MCB Honors Symposium; Christian Cabuslay and Lynn Ly present at the CNR Honor's Symposium

PhD Student Joyce awarded an NSF GRIP grant for her work on vascular cambial variants in Paullinieae (Sapindaceae)

PhD Student Joyce awarded an NSF Graduate Research Internship grant for her proposal to collect plant material in Panama for her work on the evolution of vascular cambial variants in Paullinieae (Sapindaceae)

PhD Student Carrie wins Tinker Research Grant !

PhD Student Carrie wins a Tinker Research Grant for her research on secondary metabolites in Colombian Bomarea species.

Heliconia Cookies served up!! Thanks Carrie !

PhD student Carrie baked Heliconia shaped cookies for lab meeting :)


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