Plant growth research facilities

Plant growth facilities are the NRC's underpinning platform for live plant research and product development. Our facilities offer an array of specialized equipment and controlled environment options. The facilities' dedicated technical team can provide clients and collaborators with the growth space, supplies and services necessary for start-to-finish plant production and testing.

Our capabilities

We offer a diverse selection of scalable and customizable controlled-environment solutions. Our available infrastructure includes large and small automated greenhouse ranges, and one of the largest collections of plant growth chambers (Phytotron) in North America. The facilities have more than 10,000 square feet of plant growth area in combination of greenhouse, tissue culture, growth chambers and secure seed storage.

Why work with us

We have a history of supporting industry through many ground-breaking research initiatives. The plant growth facilities continue to grow; from the advent and development of the billion dollar Canola industry to more recent successes in biofuels and even anti-malarial compounds. Stakeholders routinely use our plant growth facilities and expertise for: cell technology and protocol development; plant breeding; precise abiotic and environmental testing and storage; as well as new crop, variety and technology development. Utilizing our plant growth facilities opens the door to additional NRC expertise and specialized assistance. Our clients often leverage other NRC analytical and research platforms such as hormone profiling and mass spectrometry, DNA services, cell technology and bioinformatics.


  • Phytotron: Centralized plant production lab containing 115 controlled environment chambers. Combined we can provide 4500 ft2 of lit growth chamber and tissue culture space.
    • Plant growth chambers: 3000 ft2 of plant growth space including single rooms from 8 ft2 to 72 ft2 as well as high‑density multi‑tier rooms. Our environmental capabilities include −5 °C to +40 °C, humidity control, dew formation and highlight applications in excess of 1000 uE.
    • Tissue culture: 1500 ft2 of dedicated tissue culture space available as large walk-ins or small incubator style reach-ins.
    • Seed storage: 400 ft2 of secure temperature- and humidity‑controlled space designed for optimal medium- to long‑term germ viability.
  • Transgenic plant centre greenhouse: 5000 ft2 fully automated facility allows for multiple‑line experiments and seed increases.
  • HVAC crop greenhouse: 1000 ft2 isolation greenhouse allowing precise temperature control while still utilizing supplemental and natural light spectrums.
  • Sunrooms: A unique hybrid of combined lab and growth space providing natural sunlight with supplemental light for overcast days and shorter winter daylight hours.
  • Other: We have a full complement of services, supporting equipment and plant production supplies to support your plant research from start to finish.
    • Hydroclave – large capacity disposal for transgenic and biohazardous waste
    • Seed cleaning equipment and plant threshing equipment
    • Automated track sprayer for controlled foliar applications
    • Light quantification and spectral analysis
    • Consumable propagation supplies
    • Integrated pest management services
    • Production expertise and guidance

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Contact us

Business inquiries

April Luong
Director, Business Development

Technical inquiries

Ivor Smith
Telephone: 306-975-6079


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