Dr Kai-Uwe Schwarz
Dr Kai-Uwe Schwarz is a pioneer of the development of miscanthus having worked on the agronomy and physiology of miscanthus crops for over 20 years. Substantial knowledge and expertise in the fields of perennial grasses and short rotation crops (SRC) has been built up over 20 years and form the basis of his work today. His work is focused on solving problems of the establishment of field stands of Miscanthus and the investigation of ‘best practice’ techniques play a dominant role. The first commercial project was the establishment, control and monitoring of M. giganteus field trials at 20 locations throughout Germany, beginning in 1990 to estimate biomass yield potential. Later studies on M. sacchariflorus with thick and long bamboo-like stems examined properties for structural uses.
Dr Kai Schwarz is very familiar with the commercial development of Miscanthus, particularly the propagation of commercial plant material. In WATBIO he is involved in the propagation of Miscanthus germplasm using in-vitro (in-vitro tillering) and vegetative (stem and rhizome propagules) techniques. This involves surface sterilization of stem or rhizome buds to establish non-contaminated disease free plant material to start the process of plant multiplication. Plant rooting is enhanced through optimization of hormone treatment before transplanting to soil medium in order to minimize plant losses.