Rothamsted Research

where knowledge grows

benjami

Laurence Benjamin

Role(s):
Quality Assurance Manager
Operations HSBQ
Harpenden
Summary:

My early science career was in whole plant physiology, with particular interest in the source sink relations between leaves and storage organs.  I developed and used techniques in growth analysis, 14C isotope labelling of plants and carbohydrate determinations.

My PhD was at Leeds University and I then took up a post of technical officer at the University of Western Australia and followed by a Post Doctoral Fellowship at the University of Kentucky.  I was then appointed as a research leader at HRI, Wellesbourne for a team investigating the sources of plant-to-plant size variation in vegetable crops.  After holding this post for 21 years,  I took a post as Ecological Modeller at Rothamsted Research for three years. In this period my research interests were developing mathematical models to simulate inter-plant competition, and developing decision support software.

Over my entire career, I developed programming skills in FORTRAN, matlab, C++, php mysql, field experiments and statistical design and analysis. I was also site Fire Safety Manager at Wellesbourne for three years.

Since 2004, my role has been to advise research staff on how to meet the requirements of the Joint Code of Practice and to plan and conduct audits of science projects and services that support science. I have also tried to provide support tools for quality assurance, principally web-based databases for handling information. 

In April 2008, my role changed from Quality Assurance Advisor to Quality Assurance Manager.  I am responsible for the programme of internal audits agains the Joint Code of Practice for Research.  I served as Technical Secretary on the Rothamsted Research Environmental Committee and now serve on the Health Safety and Environment Committee.  To meet the requirements of ISO 14001 certification, I am responsible for a programme of internal audits of the environmental management system.

I am also the GEP officer in relation to those projects conducted under the Rothamsted Site Official Recognition Licence to conduct experimental work for pesticide and semiochemical product approval and authorisation.

Phone:
+44 (0) 1582 763 133 ext: +44 1582 938518
Location:
Rothamsted Research, West Common, Harpenden, Hertfordshire, AL5 2JQ

 

PUBLICATION LIST - L R BENJAMIN

Refereed:-

  1. Benjamin, L. R. & Wren, M. J. (1978). Root development and source–sink relations in carrot Daucus carota L. Journal of experimental Botany 29, 425–33.
  2. Benjamin, L. R. & Greenway, H. (1979). Effects of a range of 02 concentrations on porosity of barley roots and on their sugar and protein concentrations. Annals of Botany 43, 383–91.
  3. Benjamin, L. R. & Wren, M. J. (1980). Root development and source–sink relations in carrot Daucus carota L. II. Effects of root pruning on carbon assimilation and the partitioning of assimilates. Journal of experimental Botany 31, 1139–46.
  4. Benjamin, L. R. , Egli, D. B. & Leggett, J. E. (1981). Effect of leaf age and shading on the movement of 14C through a soybean leaf. Canadian Journal of Plant Science 61, 205–12.
  5. Benjamin, L. R. (1982). Some effects of differing times of seedling emergence, population density and seed size on root–size variation in carrot populations. Journal of agricultural Science, Cambridge 98, 537–45.
  6. Benjamin, L. R. (1982). A model to predict the effects of complex row spacings on the yields of root crops. Journal of agricultural Science, Cambridge 98, 131–9.
  7. Benjamin, L. R. (1982). The influence of foliage habit on competition between carrot plants. Annals of Botany 50, 117–25.
  8. Benjamin, L. R. (1984). The relative importance of some sources of root–weight variation in a carrot crop. Journal of agricultural Science, Cambridge 102, 69–77.
  9. Benjamin, L. R. (1984). The relative importance of some different sources of plant–weight variation in drilled and transplanted leeks. Journal of agricultural Science, Cambridge 103, 527–37.
  10. Benjamin, L. R. (1984). Role of foliage habit in the competition between differently sized plants in carrot crops. Annals of Botany 53, 549–57.
  11. Benjamin, L. R. , Sutherland, R. A. & Senior, D. (1985). The influence of sowing rate and row spacing on the plant density and yield of red beet. Journal of agricultural Science, Cambridge 104, 615–24.
  12. Benjamin, L. R. & Bell, N. (1985). The influence of seed type and plant density on variation in plant size of red beet (Beta vulgaris L.) crops. Journal of agricultural Science, Cambridge 105, 563–71.
  13. Benjamin, L. R. & Hardwick, R. C. (1986). Sources of variation and measures of variability in even–aged stands of plants. Annals of Botany 58, 757–778.
  14. Benjamin, L. R. (1987). The relative importance of cluster size, sowing depth, time of seedling emergence and between–plant spacing on variation in plant size in red beet (Beta vulgaris L.) crops. Journal of agricultural Science, Cambridge 108, 221–30.
  15. Sutherland, R. A. & Benjamin, L. R. (1987). A new model relating crop yield and plant arrangement. Annals of Botany 59, 399–411.
  16. Benjamin, L. R. (1988). A single equation to quantify the hierarchy in plant size induced by competition within monocultures. Annals of Botany 62, 199–214.
  17. Benjamin, L. R. , Sutherland, R. A. (1989). Storage root weight, diameter and length relationships in carrots (Daucus carota L.) and red beet (Beta vulgaris L.). Journal of agricultural Science, Cambridge 113, 73–80.
  18. Benjamin, L. R. (1990). Variation in time of seedling emergence within populations: a feature which determines individual growth and development. Advances in Agronomy 44, 1-25.
  19. Shanmuganathan, V. & Benjamin, L. R. (1992). The influence of sowing depth and seed size on seedling emergence time and relative growth rate in spring cabbage (Brassica oleracea var. capitata L). Annals of Botany 69, 273-276.
  20. Benjamin, L. R. & Sutherland, R. A. (1992). Control of mean root weight in carrots (Daucus carota L.) by varying within- and between-row spacing. Journal of agricultural Science, Cambridge 119, 59-70.
  21. Benjamin, L. R. & Sutherland, R. A. (1992). A comparison of models to simulate the competitive interactions between plants in even-aged monocultures. In Individual-Based Approaches in Ecology (ed D. deAngelis, pub Chapman & Hall). Chapt 20. 455-471.
  22. Sutherland, R. A. & Benjamin, L. R. (1993). The influence of the arrangement of neighbours on the spatial component of resource capture by an individual plant in even-aged monocultures. Annals of Botany 71, 131-134.
  23. Benjamin, L. R. (1993). Experimental discrimination between contrasting models of neighbourhood competition. Journal of Ecology 81, 417-423.
  24. Shanmuganathan, V. & Benjamin, L. R. (1993). The effect of time of seedling emergence and density on the marketable yield of spring cabbage. Journal of Horticultural Science 68, 947-954.
  25. Aikman, D. P. & Benjamin, L. R. (1994). A model for plant and crop growth, allowing for competition for light by the use of potential and restricted projected crown zone areas. Annals of Botany 73, 185-194.
  26. Benjamin, L. R. & Aikman, D. P. (1995). Predicting growth in stands of mixed species from that in individual species. Annals of Botany 76, 31-42.
  27. Aikman, D. P., Benjamin, L. R. & Scaife, A. (1995). A competition model to predict growth in intercrops from monocrop data. 1. Model derivation. in Ecophysiology of Tropical Intercropping eds H. Sinoquet and P. Cruz, Institut National de la Recherche Agrononmique, Paris, pp. 369-377.
  28. Benjamin, L. R. & Aikman, D. P. (1995). A competition model to predict growth in intercrops from monocrop data. 2. Model Validation. in Ecophysiology of Tropical Intercropping eds H. Sinoquet and P. Cruz, Institut National de la Recherche Agrononmique, Paris, pp. 379-386.
  29. Benjamin, L. R. , McGarry, A & Gray, D. (1996) The root vegetables: Beet, carrot parsnips and turnip in The Physiology of Vegetable Crops (ed H. C. Wien), CAB International, Wallingford, Oxon, UK
  30. Benjamin, L. R. , Peach, L., vanWoerden I. C., & A. Oppelaar (1996). A technique to estimate the radial extent of active mineral absorption by individual plants in carrot stands. Journal of experimental Botany 47, 687-692
  31. Benjamin, L. R. (1996). Spatial Components of Plant Competition. Aspects of Applied Biology 46, Eds E. M. White, L. R. Benjamin, P. Brain, P. J. C. Hamer, M. A. Mugglestone, G. Russell & C. F. E. Topp, pubs, Association of Applied Biologists, Warwick, UK. pp 103-110.
  32. Benjamin, L. R . (1999). A comparison of different rules of partitioning of crop growth between individual plants. Ecological Modelling 115, 111-118.
  33. Benjamin, L. R. , and Reader R. J. (1998). A dynamic model for simulating edge effects in carrot crops. Journal of Horticultural Science & Biotechnology 73, 737-742
  34. Benjamin, L. R. , Hembry, J. K., Bowtell, J., Phelps, K. and Gray, D. (1999). Predicting the frequency distributions in carrot and red beet crops. Journal of Horticultural Science & Biotechnology 74, 259-264.
  35. Langton, F. A., Benjamin, L. R. and Edmondson, R. N. (1999) The effects of crop density on plant growth and variability in cut-flower chrysanthemum (Chrysanthemum morifolium Ramat.) Journal of Horticultural Science & Biotechnology 74, 493-501.
  36. Peach, L., Benjamin, L. R., & A. Mead (2000). Effects on the growth of carrots (Daucus carota L.), cabbage (Brassica oleracea var capitata L,) and onion (Allium cepa L.) of restricting the ability of the plants to intercept resources. Journal of experimental Botany 51, 605-615.
  37. Park S. E, Aikman, D. P., Watkinson, AR, Benjamin, L. R. (2001). Predicting the growth interactions between plants in mixed species stands using a simple mechanistic model. Annals of Botany 87, 523-36
  38. Park S. E, Benjamin, L. R., Watkinson, AR, (2002). Comparing biological productivity in cropping systems: a competition approach . Journal of applied Ecology. 39, 416-426.
  39. Benjamin, L. R. (2003) Plant Growth and Development, Plant Growth Analysis Crops: In Encyclopedia of Applied Plant Science (eds Thomas, B; Murphy, D and Murray, B) Elsevier Science Ltd, Oxford. pp 588-595.
  40. Deen, W.,Cousens, R., Warringa, J., Bastiaans, L., Carberry, P., Rebel, K., Riha, H., Murphy, C., Benjamin, L. R., Cloughley, C., Cussans, J., Forcella, F., Hunt, T., Jamieson, P. D., Lindquist, J. L. and Wang, E. (2003) An evaluation of four crop : weed competition models using a common data set. Weed Research 43 116-129.
  41. Park S. E, Benjamin, L. R., Watkinson, A. R. (2003). The theory and application of plant competition models: an agronomic perspective. Annals of Botany 92, 741-748.
  42. Koivisto J. M., Benjamin L. R., Lane, G. P. F., and Davies W. P. (2003). Forage potential of semi-leafless grain peas.  Grass and Forage Science 58, 220-223.
  43.  Benjamin L. R. and J. W. Cussans (2003). Impact of spring germinating weed seedlings in autumn-sown crops on weed seed bank dynamics. Aspects of Applied Biology 69 269-276.
  44. Grundy, A.C., Onyang, C. M., Phelps, K., Reader, J. A., Marchant, J., Benjamin, L. R. and Mead, A. (2005) Using a competition model to quantify the optimal trade-off between machine vision capability and weed removal effectiveness. Weed Resesarch 45 388-405.
  45. Benjamin L. R . and Park S. E. (2007). The Conductance model of plant growth and competition in monocrop and species mixtures: a review. Weed Research 47 284-298.
  46. Parsons, D.J, Benjamin L. R., Clarke J., Ginsburg D., Mayes A., Milne A. E. and Wilkinson D. J. (2009). Weed Manager - a model based decision support system for weed management in arable crops. Computers and Electronics in Agriculture 65, 155-167.
  47. Benjamin, L. R., Milne, A. E., Parsons, D. J., Cussans, L. and Lutman P. J. W. (2009) Using stochastic dynamic programming to support weed management decisions over a rotation. Weed Research 49, 207-216.
  48. Benjamin, L. R., Milne, A. E., Parsons, D. J. and Lutman P. J. W. (2010) A model to simulate yield losses in winter wheat caused by weeds, for use in a weed management decision support system.  Crop Protection 29, 1264-1273.
  49. Both, A. J., Benjamin, L. R., Franklin, J., Holroyd, G., Incoll, L. D., Lefsrud, M. G. and Pitkin, G. (2015)  Gudilelines for measuring and reporting environmental parameters for experiments in greenhouses.  Plant Methods 11:43 1-18.

 

Non-Refereed

  1. Tyler, F. T. & Benjamin, L. R. (1982). Spacing red beet for high returns. Grower 97, 19–23.
  2. Benjamin, L. R. , (1987). Variation in plant size and the timing of carrot production. Acta Horticulturae 198, 297–304.
  3. Benjamin, L. R. (1987). Small carrot production. Confidential Technical Report for commercial sponsors.
  4. Benjamin, L. R. (1988). Variation in plant size: a commercial and academic problem. Professional Horticulture 2, 90–94.
  5. Benjamin, L. R. (1988). Sugar and dry matter content of carrots. Confidential Technical Report for commercial sponsors.
  6. Benjamin, L. R. (1988). Baby carrot production. Confidential Technical Report for commercial sponsors.
  7. Benjamin, L. R. (1989). Baby parsnip production. Confidential Technical Report for commercial sponsor.
  8. Benjamin, L. R. (1989). Sugar and dry matter content of baby carrots. Confidential Technical Report for commercial sponsors.
  9. Benjamin, L. R. (1989). Sizing up plant variation. Grower 111, 20–22.
  10. Benjamin, L. R. (1990). Simulating competition between plants using mathematical models and the prospect of predicting marketable yield. Acta Horticulturae 267 395-400.
  11. Benjamin, L. R. & Sutherland, R. A. (1990). A comparison of models to simulate the competitive interactions between plants in even-aged monocultures. Symposium/Workshop: Knoxville, Tennessee, May 16-19 1990.
  12. Sutherland, R. A. & Benjamin, L. R. (1990). Modelling the responses of mean root weight in carrots to change in spatial arrangement and duration of growth. Proceedings of the 24th meeting of the AFRC modellers' Group. Journal of agricultural Science, Cambridge 115, 145.
  13. Benjamin, L. R. & Shanmuganathan, V. (1991). Vegetable variations. Grower 115, 12-13.
  14. Gray, D. & Benjamin, L. R. (1991). Reducing the 'grade-out' pile. Grower 116, 26-28.
  15. Benjamin, L. R. & Sutherland, R. A. (1991). Matching the model to the problem. In The art and Craft of Modelling in Applied Biology Aspects of Applied Biology 26, 227-231.
  16. Aikman, D. P., Benjamin, L. R. & Scaife, A. (1993). A model for plant growth under environmental variation and competition for light. Proceedings of the 23rd meeting of the AFRC modellers' Group. Journal of agricultural Science, Cambridge 121, 285.
  17. Benjamin, L. R. (1994). A simple and general model for plant competition. Proceedings of the 24th meeting of the AFRC modellers' Group. Journal of agricultural Science, Cambridge 122, 162.
  18. Benjamin, L. R. (1994). Row spacing to improve uniformity of carrot crops. Horticulture Development Council Final Report.
  19. Benjamin, L. R. (1994). Spacing and the impact on plant growth. Grower 121 (26) 30-31/33.
  20. Benjamin, L. R. , and Reader R. J.(1994). Predicting seeding rates to maximize yield in target diameter grades in carrots. In Fifth International Congress for Computer Technology in Agriculture. Enabling technologies for land use and resource management. Royal Agricultural Society of England, Stoneleigh, UK.
  21. Gray, D. & Benjamin, L. R. (1995). Getting established. pub. Horticultural Development Council, Petersfield, UK.
  22. Benjamin, L. R. (1997). An improvement to a model for plant competition. Proceedings of the 29th meeting of the Agricultural Research Modellers' Group. Journal of agricultural Science, Cambridge 129, 117.
  23. Benjamin, L. R. (1997). Review of World Vegetables: Principles, Production and Nutritive Values, by V. E. Rubatzky and M. Yamaguchi (2nd Edition). Journal of agricultural Science, Cambridge 129, 496.
  24. Hanks, G., Wurr, D. C. E. and Benjamin, L. R. (1998). Models for daff management. Grower 129, (25) 10-11.
  25. Hanks, G., Wurr, D. C. E. and Benjamin, L. R. (1998). Crop management in daffs. Grower 129, ( 21) 25/27-28.
  26. Benjamin, L. R . (1998). Competitive interactions between individual plants in contrasting soil water regimes. Journal of Experimental Botany 49 (suppl), 38.
  27. Benjamin, L. R . (1998). A modification of the Aikman and Benjamin plant growth and competition model to allow for drought. Journal of Agricultural Science 131, 237-238.
  28. Bond, W., Grundy, A. C., Mead, A. and Benjamin, L. R., (1999) Choosing your moment, Optimum timing for weed control. Organic Farming 60, 22-23.
  29. Collings L. V., Ginsburg D., Clarke J. H., Milne A. E., Parsons, D. J., Wilkinson, D. J., Benjamin L. R., Mayes A., Lutman, P. J. W. and Davies D. H. K., (2003) WMSS: Improving the precision and prediction of weed management strategies in winter dominant rotations. The BCPC International Congress � Crop Science & Technology 2003 4B-3 pp329-342.

Conference Presentations

  1. Benjamin, L. R. (1989). Simulating competition between plants using mathematical models and the prospect of predicting marketable yield. Symposium on the timing of field production of vegetables, Wageningen, The Netherlands, 21-25 August 1989.
  2. Benjamin, L. R. (1989). Data for model fitting. AAB symposium on variability in plant monculutres � physiology, ecology and economic aspects, Warwickshire College of Agriculture, Moreton Morrell, 26-27 Octobert 1989.
  3. Benjamin, L. R. & Sutherland, R. A. (1991). Matching the model to the problem. AAB symposium on the art and craft of modelling in applied biology, Queens University Belfast, 3-5 July 1991.
  4. Gray. D. & Benjamin, L. R. (1992). Controlling the size of carrot: the roles of seed quality seed treatment and plant density. In: Abstracts - First International Workshop on Carrot, Caen, France, September 1992, Paris: Centre Technique Interprofessionnel des Fruits et Legumes, pp 14-15.
  5. Benjamin, L. R. & Aikman, D. P. (1994). A competition model to predict growth in intercrops from monocrop data. First International Meeting on the Ecophysiology of Tropical Intercropping, Guadeloupe, 6-10 December 1994.
  6. Aikman, D. P. Benjamin, L. R. Bond, W. & Mead, A. (1995). Use of a simple mechanistic model to simulate weed and crop growth. Proceedings of the Brighton Crop Protection Conference 20-23 November 1995. 7C-9, 901-906.
  7. Peach, L. & Benjamin, L. R. (1995). An investigation into the causes of edge effects in carrots. Poster presented at the British Ecological Society Winter Meeting, 19-21 December 1995.
  8. Benjamin, L. R. (1996). Effects of spatial arrangement on individual plant growth in crop plants. Symposium Individual-based approach to ecology, Mikolajki, Poland, 27-31 May 1996.
  9. Benjamin, L. R. (1996). Spatial Components of Plant Competition. AAB symposium on Spatial aspects of Applied Biology, Brunel University, Uxbridge, 25-27 June 1996
  10. Mead, A., Bond, W., Benjamin, L. R. & Aikman, D. P. (1996).Use of a competition model to predict the optimum time for weed removal in field vegetables. Association of Applied Biologists / Institute of Horticulture residential meeting at the University of Warwick, 12-13 September 1996.
  11. Benjamin, L. R . (1998). Competitive interactions between individual plants in contrasting soil water regimes. Society of Experimental Biology York Meeting.
  12. Benjamin, L. R. (1999). Prediction of wheat and ryegrass growth using the Conductance Model. GCTE workshop on crop - weed competition model comparison, University of Melbourne, 23-25 November 1999.
  13. Hinde, C. J., Reader, R. J., Phelps, K., Benjamin, L. R., Parker, C. G. (1999) HIPPO: Flexible Software for building simulation models. BBSRC mathematical modelling, simulation and prediction workshop, Ferndown, 17-18 November 1999
  14. Collings L. V., Ginsburg D., Clarke J. H., Milne A. E., Parsons D. J., Wilkinson D. J., Benjamin L. R., Mayes A., Lutman, P. J. W. and Davies D. H. K. (2003) WMSS: Improving the precision and prediction of weed management strategies in winter wheat dominated rotations Proceedings of the British Crop Protection Conference, Glasgow November 2003
  15. Davies D. H. K., Collings L. V., Ginsburg D., Clarke J. H., Milne A. E., Benjamin L. R., Mayes A., Lutman, P. J. W. and (2003) Providing a framework for improved management of weeds in arable systems � WMSS Proceedings Crop Protection in Northern Britain 2004
  16. Collings L. V., Ginsburg D., Clarke J. H., Milne A. E., Parsons, D. J., Wilkinson, D. J., Benjamin L. R., Mayes A., Lutman, P. J. W. and Davies D. H. K., (2003) WMSS: Improving the precision and prediction of weed management strategies in winter dominant rotations. The BCPC International Congress  Crop Science & Technology 2003 4B-3 pp329-342.
  17. Benjamin L. R. and J. W. Cussans. (2003). Impact of spring germinating weed seedlings in autumn-sown crops on weed seed bank dynamics. At Seedbanks: Determination, dynamics and management. Association of Applied Biologists and European Weed Research Society Conference, University of Reading 17-18 September 2003.
  18. Benjamin, L. R. (2006). Quality assurance from the auditor's point of view. UK Controlled Environment Users Group Meeting 2006 Science Meeting http://www.ceug.ac.uk/documents/Proceedings-06-acro.pdf.
  19. Benjamin, L. R. (2008). Quality standards in CE: Implications for the user. 2008 International Meeting on Controlled Environment Agriculture, Cocoa Beach Florida 8-12 March 2008.
  20. Benjamin, L. R. (2008). The Conductance Model.  Endure Winter Workshop, Rothamsted Research  24-25 November 2008 .

Qualifications

1976:

PhD in Whole Plant Physiology (University of Leeds)

1973:

BSc in Agricultural Science (Plants) Leeds (University of Leeds)

Measures of esteem

2012

  • Web Master for UK Controlled Environment Users Group
  • Member UK Controlled Environment Users Group Executive Committee

2010

  • Member of the International Committee for Controlled Environment Guidelines Greenhouse sub-committee: Particular input to provide Quality Assurance section on guidelines document for reporting environmental variables in greenhouse experiments.

2007

  • Quality Assurance Advisor to the UK Controlled Environment Users Group

2006

  • QA from the Controlled Environment Auditor's Point of View: Invited to give presentation by organisers of the UK Controlled Environment Users Group meeting 12-13 September 2006

2005

  • External examiner for Ph D: Competition and complementarity between intercrops - the role of plant available nutrients

2003

  • Subject Editor for Weed Research: April 2003 to December 2010