Texas A&M University-Commerce and fellow Texas A&M University System member institution Tarleton State University jointly received nearly $300,000 in research funds from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food & Agriculture. The funds will go toward research into Plant Drought Response and Insect Pollinator Studies, also known as Plant DRIPS. A&M-Commerce is the prime recipient of funds, being awarded $159,124, while Tarleton will receive $140,743. A&M-Commerce Professor of Horticulture Dr. Derald Harp says that the project will evaluate perennials commonly used in ornamental landscapes in the area and study their performance under low-input conditions, specifically looking at three different irrigation programs all related to water loss from evapotranspiration, and looking at flower production, along with nectar quality and quantity. Harp adds that one of the main goals of the project is to generate information about the relationship between plants and pollinators, especially during periods of drought stress, and identify ways landscapes can be designed and managed to benefit pollinators. The project will run until August 31, 2024. Read an NIFA press release regarding the award.