11th International Symposium on Leaf Surface Microbiology
Davis, California, USA, 12-16 July 2020

To get on the Phyllosphere 2020 mailing list, click here.

And click here to meet some Fans of the Phyllosphere!

2020 is the International Year of Plant Health!

Phyllosphere 2020

The ‘phyllosphere meeting’ is a quinquennial event that brings together experts from around the world with a scientific interest in leaves (and other above-ground parts of plants and trees, including flowers, fruit, buds, petioles, stems, twigs, branches, and trunks) as a habitat for microorganisms.

First held in 1970, the meeting serves as an international platform to share and learn about the latest discoveries in phyllosphere microbiology and as an incubator for new ideas and new collaborations in a field that recognizes how the many essential ecosystem services that plant foliage provides are influenced by the microscopic organisms that can be found on and in leaves (i.e. bacteria, fungi, yeasts, protists, viruses, insects).

As a discipline that became established in the 1950s, phyllosphere microbiology is now recognized as having contributed in significant ways to the study of host-microbe and microbe-microbe interactions using the leaf as an experimentally and conceptually useful model microbiome.

Phyllosphere meetings are truly multi- and inter-disciplinary. With backgrounds in such wide-ranging areas as plant pathology, food safety, microbial ecology, phytochemistry, and vegetation science, participants discuss phyllosphere microbiology in terms of problems such as foliar diseases and contamination of leafy greens with enteropathogenic bacteria, and in terms of solutions such as microbes, proteins and chemicals with plant-growth promoting activities or other commercially viable applications, and bioremediation of atmospheric pollutants.

The theme of this year’s meeting is ‘Understanding the rules of phyllospheric life’, with central questions such as these: What unique challenges and opportunities does the leaf surface present to leaf-dwelling organisms? What adaptive strategies are most successful in the phyllosphere? To what extent do these strategies benefit or disadvantage the plant host or the organisms (including humans) that depend on the health of those plants? How might answers to these questions help us grow healthier and more productive plants and trees in the face of a growing human population and uncertainties of climate change?

2020: International Year of Plant Health

The United Nations General Assembly declared 2020 as the International Year of Plant Health. The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) is “calling on people from all over the world to submit photos that illustrate their idea of healthy or unhealthy plants”. This is a unique opportunity to share with the world your healthy or unhealthy phyllosphere pictures. Details of the photo contest can be found here. The deadline for entries is 15 June 2020; winners (two per category) will be announced in July 2020. Good luck!

Fans of the Phyllosphere

Nadav Kashtan
The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel

“As a newcomer who recently joined the phyllosphere research community –  I’m truly excited to participate in this one of a kind meeting! See you there.”

Britt Koskella
University of California, Berkeley

“As a relative newcomer into the Phyllosphere field in 2015, I was thrilled to hear about the diverse array of research being done on this important but understudied environment. The community was incredibly welcoming, and the science presented ranged from really exciting fundamental research to novel application within agriculture and beyond. I would highly recommend the meeting to newbies and long-standing phyllosphere researchers alike.”

Mitja Remus-Emsermann
University of Canterbury, New Zealand

“In 2007, I started my PhD in Phyllosphere microbial ecology. 12 years later I do not regret this decision one bit. Our community is warm, welcoming and supportive and our science is cutting edge. Both Phyllosphere symposia I have attended so far were among the best scientific meetings I have been at. I am looking forward join the symposium in the beautiful and laid-back Davis, California.”

Are you a Fan of the Phyllosphere? Is this your first Phyllosphere meeting, or have you attended one (or more) before? Let us know!