Welcome to our lab at the University of Alberta. We study the form and function of plants and their interactions with the environment. Our focus is on plant-water relations. 

We aim to get a more complete understanding of how water moves from roots to leaves, and how transport relates to a plant's environment.

We are an international group. Lab members have different research backgrounds and share their knowledge and expertise. More...


Recent Projects

Xylem development, structure and function. We explored wood development and how it is influenced by genes and environment. To do this, we grew hybrid poplar plants under different levels of water, light, and nitrogen.
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Climate change effects on forest health. We are studying drought-induced dieback in aspen and other tree species in western Canada.

Aquaporins. Water channel proteins are found in many tissues and cell types. Plants have more aquaporin genes than other organisms, which raises the question what the function of individual aquaporin genes is. We have used a wide range of methods (including confocal microscopy, in situ hybridization, and qRT-PCR) to study these fascinating membrane channels.

Hydraulic traits of plantation trees. How does vessel diameter vary across sites? Can we link tree growth at boreal planting sites with vessel diameter or other xylem traits? Do hybrid poplar clones differ in their frost tolerance and leaf phenology?
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U.H. acknowledges support from:

The Canada Research Chair Program. // Canada Research Chairs

NSERC. // Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada

CFI. // Canada Foundation for Innovation

Government of Alberta - Small Equipment Grants


Dr. Hacke is a participant in the Land Reclamation International Graduate School (LRIGS) program sponsored by NSERC CREATE.


  • Phone:
    (780) 492 8511
  • Email:
    uwe.hacke at ualberta.ca
  • Address:
    442 Earth Sciences Building
  • Department of Renewable Resources
    Edmonton, AB T6G 2E3, Canada