Evenari, Michael

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EVENARI, MICHAEL (originally Walter Schwarz ; 1904–1989), Israel botanist. Born in France, Evenari went to Ereẓ Israel in 1933, having carried out plant research in universities in France, Czechoslovakia, and Germany. He joined the Hebrew University in 1934. During World War ii he served in the Jewish Brigade and after returning to civilian life, lectured at several U.S. and South American universities. From 1952 to 1957 Evenari was dean of the faculty of science at the Hebrew University and headed the botany department as professor of plant physiology. He served as vice president of the Hebrew University from 1953 to 1959. Evenari's main fields of research were the study of the influence of red and infra-red light on the germination of seeds, and the determination of the food value of algae for livestock and their large-scale cultivation. With a grant from the Rockefeller Foundation, Evenari carried out research on the methods used by *Nabateans, Romans, and Byzantines to maintain a thriving agricultural existence in the northern Negev in spite of the low annual rainfall of the area. He set up experimental farms at *Shivta and *Avedat based on archaeological findings in the area. Evenari served on several unesco bodies, dealing with arid zone development.