Alternative crops for dryland farming systems

Crop-growing regions experience increasingly dryer and warmer climates, and more lands are becoming hostile to any crop currently cultivated.

While most cultivated crops, including major crops such as wheat, are not able to physiologically adapt to very harsh environments, other species such as succulent plants are already well adapted to hostile environments with low rainfall and high temperature. Adopting these species as alternative crops in dry areas can help growers maintain stable productivity in a changing climate. In this project, the student will assess the value of succulent plants to Australian dryland farming system. This will involve growing plants in vitro and conducting phytochemical analyses to evaluate the nutritional value of succulents in comparison with other crops.


  • Dr Abdeljalil El Habti is a postdoctoral research fellow with the School of Agriculture, Food and Wine at the University of Adelaide. His research focuses on the mechanisms involved in plants’ ability to use water and convert it to food in dry environments. In particular, he investigates optimum stomatal traits for plant adaptation to drought.

Further information

This project may be eligible for a $5000 student scholarship. Please contact the project supervisor for details and to express your interest.

Tagged in Honours projects - Agricultural science, Honours projects - Plant science