Donald James Batten, B.Sc.Agr. (Hons 1), Ph.D. Don Batten on Google+

Creationist Agricultural Scientist (Australia)
CEO, CMI-Australia


I was born and raised in a rural area of Australia at a time of great family stability and security—at a time when locks were not necessary and divorce was rare. Almost everyone had two parents caring for them. I have seen the development of the rampant social decay which now afflicts Australia—where it is no longer safe to walk the streets at night or leave your house unlocked and where many children struggle with only one parent to raise them. This social decay accelerated with the introduction of systematic evolutionary indoctrination into school curricula in the 1960s—indoctrination which I received also.

I was converted as a result of a street preacher from the Open Air Campaigners at the young age of 10 years (before the evolutionary indoctrination). As a young Christian in boarding high school I naively thought that ‘science was facts’ and tried to believe in evolution and the Bible by accepting the notion that ‘God used evolution’, days-are-ages, ‘progressive creation’, etc. I could never see how the gap theory solved anything, or that it had any basis in the Bible. However, I really chose not to think about ‘science’ and the Bible because I guess I knew that evolution did not go with the Bible at all. I arrived at University with this attitude.

As an off-the-cuff remark a Professor of Zoology said in a lecture ‘Some of you are worried about this evolution stuff. Don’t worry too much about it, I don’t know whether I believe it myself.’ Something ‘clicked’ with me when he said this—I came to see, after considerable prayer and study, that evolution is really a belief system parading as science. It is an alternative religion designed to banish the creator God to the realm of abstract philosophy only (contrary to Romans 1:20). In the end I came to see the importance of the written Word of God. I had an unforgettable experience of being confronted with the challenge, almost like an audible voice from Heaven, ‘Are you going to believe My Word, or the words of men?’ In tears, on my knees, I confessed my unbelief and asked for forgiveness. My life has never been the same since. It was like being born again—again!

Since then I have endeavoured to understand the Bible and to defend it from all who would attack it. I have seen many lives turned around, friends converted, and Christians on fire for the Lord, through the creation message. That is why I am now working to spread the Gospel-creation message with my colleagues and friends at CMI.

I am happily married to Lesley and blessed with three grown children who love the Lord.

Research fields

Plant physiology. Environmental adaptation of tropical / subtropical fruit species such as mango, lychee and custard apple (Annona spp.); floral biology, floral induction; breeding; environmental physiology (especially water requirements, effects of water deficits), plant taxonomy (especially at the sub-species level), and mineral nutrition. Dr Batten’s research in floral induction of lychee and mango has resulted in a complete overturning of previously accepted thought on this (see Batten and McConchie, 1995), which was a big impediment to scientific progress in the field as well as a cause for economic loss caused by erratic flowering due to inappropriate management of these crops.

Research Projects Funded by External Agencies

  1. Study tour of India and Taiwan on lychees and mangoes, 1980 (CESG)
  2. Provision of controlled-temperature glasshouse for propagation of tropical/subtropical fruit 1983–84 (RCDF).
  3. Control of fruit set and retention in lychee, 1987–91 (RIRDC)—with C.A. McConchie, CSIRO Div. Horticulture, Brisbane.
  4. Overcoming problems related to poor root health in custard apple and lychee, 1990–92 (RIRDC)
  5. Regulation of cropping in lychee, 1991–1994 (RIRDC)—with C.A. McConchie, CSIRO Div. of Horticulture, Brisbane.


  • 1969–72: B.Sc.Agr.(First Class Honours)—University of Sydney
  • 1973–76: Ph.D.—University of Sydney, Department of Agronomy and Horticultural Science. Thesis: Induction of adventitious root formation in mung bean (Vigna radiata (L.) Wilczek)


  • 1976–90: Research Horticulturist, NSW Agriculture, Tropical Fruit Research Station, Alstonville.
  • 1991–1994: Senior Research Horticulturist, NSW Agriculture, Tropical Fruit Research Station, Alstonville (resigned January 1994).
  • 1994–: Creation Ministries International, Brisbane, Australia + private horticultural consultant.


Scientific Journals for which papers have been refereed

  • Annals of Botany, Australian Journal of Experimental Agriculture
  • Australian Journal of Agricultural Research
  • New Zealand Journal of Crop Science
  • Scientia Horticulturae
  • Tree Physiology (Canada)
  • Advances in Horticultural Science
  • Indonesian Journal of Crop Science.

Refereed papers published in science journals

  1. Batten, D.J. and Mullins, M.G. (1978). Ethylene and adventitious root formation in hypocotyl segments of etiolated mung-bean (Vigna radiata (L.) Wilczek) seedlings. Planta 138(3):193–8. (doi:10.1007/BF00386810)
  2. Batten, D.J. and Goodwin, P.B. (1981). Auxin transport inhibitors and the rooting of hypocotyl cuttings from etiolated mung-bean (Vigna radiata (L.) Wilczek) seedlings. Annals of Botany 47(4):497–505. (Abstract)
  3. Peak, C.M., Fitzell, R.D., Hannah, R.S. and Batten, D.J. (1986). Development of a microprocessor-based data recording system for predicting plant disease based on studies on mango anthracnose. Computers and Electronics in Agriculture 1(3):251–62. (doi:10.1016/0168-1699(86)90012-8)
  4. Batten, D.J. (1989). Maturity criteria for litchis (lychees). Food Quality and Preference 1(4/5):149–55. (doi:10.1016/0950-3293(89)90002-5)
  5. Batten, D.J. (1990). Effect of temperature on ripening and post-harvest life of fruit of atemoya (Annona cherimola Mill. x A. Squamosa L.) cv. ‘African Pride’. Scientia Horticulturae 45(1-2):129–36. (doi:10.1016/0304-4238(90)90075-P)
  6. McConchie, C.A. and Batten, D.J. (1991). Fruit set in lychee (Litchi chinensis Sonn). Variation between flowers, panicles and trees. Australian Journal of Agricultural Research 42(7):1163–72. (doi:10.1071/AR9911163)
  7. Batten, D.J., Lloyd, J. and McConchie, C.A. (1992). Cultivar differences in stomatal responses in lychee (Litchi chinensis Sonn.). Australian Journal of Plant Physiology19(3):317–29. (doi:10.1071/PP9920317)
  8. McConchie, C.A., Batten, D.J. and Vithanage, V. (1994). Intergeneric hybridisation between litchi (Litchi chinensis Sonn.) and longan (Dimocarpus longan Lour.). Annals of Botany 74(2):111–118. (doi:10.1006/anbo.1994.1100)
  9. Batten, D.J., McConchie, C.A. and Lloyd, J. (1994). Effect of soil water deficit on gas exchange characteristics and water relations of orchard lychee (Litchi chinensis Sonn.) trees. Tree Physiology 14(10):117–1189. (PDF of paper)
  10. Batten, D.J. and Lahav, E. (1994). Base temperatures for growth processes of lychee, a recurrently flushing tree, are similar but optima differ. Australian Journal of Plant Physiology21(5):589–602. (doi:10.1071/PP9940589)
  11. Fitzell, R.D., Batten, D.J. and Vimpany, I. (1994). Investigation into the cause of poor root health in custard apple. Plant Protection Quarterly9(1):2–5.
  12. Batten, D.J. and McConchie, C.A. (1995). Floral induction in growing buds of lychee (Litchi chinensis Sonn.) and mango (Mangifera indica L.) Australian Journal of Plant Physiology22(5):783–791. (doi:10.1071/PP9950783)
  13. Duret, P., Waechter, A.-I., Hocquemiller, R., Cavé, A. and Batten, D. (1996). Annotemoyin-1 and -2: two novel mono-tetrahydrofuranic-lactone acetogenins from the seeds of Annona atemoya. Natural Product Letters8:89–95.

Postgraduate Theses, Books and Book Chapters

  1. Batten, D.J. (1976). Induction of adventitious root formation in mung bean (Vigna radiata (L.) Wilczek). Ph.D. thesis, University of Sydney.
  2. Batten, D.J. and Goodwin, P.B. (1978). Phytohormones and the induction of adventitious roots. In Letham, D.B., Goodwin, P.B. and Higgins, T.J.V. (eds.). Phytohormones and Related Compounds—A Comprehensive Treatise Vol. II pp 137–145. (Elsevier/North-Holland Biomedical Press).
  3. Batten, D.J. (1982). Litchi. Crop No.550 in Hackett, C. and Carolane, J. (Eds). Edible Horticultural Crops—a Compendium of Information on Fruit, Vegetable, Spice and Nut Species 3 Vols. Academic Press, Sydney
  4. Batten, D.J. (1984). Fruit Crops. In J.R. Cook (Ed.). Jojoba, Guayule or What? New Crops—Factors for Survival Aust. Inst. Agric. Science Occasional Publication No.16.
  5. Batten, D.J. (1984). Myrtaceae–guava (Psidium guajava L.). In Tropical Tree Fruits for Australia pp. 113–20. Queensland Department of Primary Industries, Brisbane.
  6. Batten, D.J. (1984). Myrtaceae—feijoa (Pineapple guava) Feijoa sellowiana O. Bert. In Tropical Tree Fruits for Australia pp. 121–24. Queensland Department of Primary Industries, Brisbane.
  7. Batten, D.J. (1984). Rutaceae—white sapote (Casimiroa edulis Llave). In Tropical Tree Fruits for Australia pp. 171–4. Queensland Department of Primary Industries, Brisbane
  8. Batten, D.J. and McConchie, C.A. (1991). Is lychee particularly drought sensitive? In Smith, M.M (ed.) Australian Lychee Yearbook Vol. 1 pp. 108–110. (Australian Lychee Growers Association, Brisbane).
  9. McConchie, C.A., Batten, D.J. and Vivian-Smith, A. (1991). Pollination in lychee. In Smith, M.M (ed.) Australian Lychee Yearbook Vol. 1 pp. 93–96. (Australian Lychee Growers Association, Brisbane).

Proceedings of Society Meetings and Other Technical Conferences

  1. Batten, D.J. (1977). Rootstock improvement. Proc. Aust. Avocado Research Workshop, Binna Burra, Oct. 1977, pp.46–48.
  2. Batten, D.J. (1980). Tropical/subtropical fruit and nuts. Proc. Conf. on the Development of Coffs Harbour Botanic Gardens, Coffs Harbour Technical College, May 1980. (University of New England Press). (Invited paper)
  3. Moncur, M.W., Rattigan, K., Batten, D.J., and Watson, B.J. (1984). Mangoes in Australia—where? Proceedings of the First Australian Mango Research Workshop, Cairns, Nov. 26–30, 1984 pp.71–76.
  4. Batten,D.J. (1986). Towards an understanding of reproductive failure in lychee (Litchi chinensis Sonn.). Acta Horticulturae175:79–83.
  5. Batten, D.J. (1986). Lychee Harvesting. In The Potential of Lychee in Australia (Proc. 1st National Lychee Seminar, Nambour, February 14–15th, 1986). pp. 73–76 (Invited paper).
  6. Batten, D.J. and Firth, D.J. (1987). Effective chilling temperatures. Proc. First National Low-Chill Stonefruit Conf., Lismore pp. 30–38 (Invited paper).
  7. Batten, D.J. (1988). Custard apples. Australian Special Rural Research Council Workshop “The Development of Exotic Fruit Export Industries”, Kooralbyn Valley, Qld, Nov 20–22, 1988 (Invited paper)
  8. Batten, D.J. (1989). The effect of tree age on chilling requirements of low-chill stonefruit. Proc. Australasian Conference on Tree and Nut Crops, Lismore, August 14–20, 1988 (ACOTANC88) pp. 274–6
  9. Batten, D.J. (1989). Custard apple splitting. Proc. ACOTANC88 pp. 116–20
  10. Price, G.H., Menzel, C.M., and Batten, D.J. (1989). Leaf and soil nutrient levels in lychee orchards. Proc. ACOTANC88 pp. 137–41
  11. Batten D.J. and Lloyd, J. (1989). Effect of possible increases in global temperature on distribution of deciduous crops in Australia. Australian Society of Plant Physiologists National Symposium and IGBP Workshop on Global Climate Change, July, 1989, Brisbane Abstract #155
  12. McConchie, C.A. and Batten, D.J. (1989). Variation in the fruit set of lychee flowers, panicles and trees. Australian Society of Plant Physiologists Horticulture Symposium, Brisbane, July 5, Abstract #72
  13. McConchie, C.A. and Batten, D.J. (1989). Floral biology and fruit set in lychee. Proc. 2nd National Lychee Seminar, Cairns, 21–23 Sept pp. 71–74
  14. Batten, D.J. (1989). Improving custard apple storage life. AIBC Custard Apple Workshop, Maleny, Qld, Oct 26,27
  15. Batten, D.J. and Vimpany, I. (1992). Woodiness defect in custard apple fruit. High Quality Horticulture—Australian Society of Horticultural Science Regional Technical Meeting, Brisbane, August 29, 1992. pp. 77–79.
  16. Batten, D.J. and McConchie, C.A. (1992). Pollination in lychee. Proc. Third National Lychee Seminar, Bundaberg, September 25–27. Australian Lychee Growers Association. pp.23–28.
  17. Batten, D.J. and McConchie, C.A. (1995). Floral induction in growing buds of lychee and mango. Australian Society of Plant Physiologists Conference, Broadbeach, Qld, September 27–30, Abstract #187.

Major Reports and Editing

  1. Winks, C.W., Batten, D.J. and Burt, J.R. (1984). Report on the subtropical horticulture mission to the People's Republic of China, August 6–21, 1983. Commonwealth Dept. of Primary Industries, Canberra.
  2. Batten, D.J. (Editor) (1988). Proceedings of the Fourth Australasian Conference on Tree and Nut Crops, Lismore, 15–19 August, 1988 (ACOTANC88) (488 pp.)
  3. Batten, D.J. (1993). Overcoming problems related to poor root health in custard apple and lychee. Final report to the Rural Industries Research and Development Corporation (RIRDC) for Project number DAN 54A (40 pp.)
  4. Batten, D.J. and McConchie, C.A. (1993). Fruit set, maturation and breeding in lychee—report on a visit to China under the Australia / China Agricultural Exchange Agreement (ACACA), 28 March to 18 April, 1993 (17 pp.)
  5. Batten, D.J. (Editor) (1995–97). Living Lychee, publication of the Australian Lychee Growers Association.


Selected Creation magazine articles

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