C103 Plant Sciences
My research goal is to increase our understanding of soil microbial communities and their activities, so that ultimately we can manage microbial communities for soil ecosystem services. Specifically, I am interested in identifying important ecosystem service providers within microbial communities, the abiotic and biotic factors that regulate their activities, and spatial and temporal scales over which these microbes and their activities occur.
Examples of current research efforts include the spatial and temporal analysis of atrazine-degrading bacteria and identifying soil and management factors that predict for accelerated atrazine degradation in soil; investigating the abundance, diversity and ecology of beneficial rhizobacteria that enhance crop tolerance to drought stress; and determining the influence of earthworm species on microbial community structure and nutrient cycling activities.
Courses I Teach:
I teach courses in soil microbiology, soil rhizosphere ecology and environmental soil science. My specific classes are:
- SOCR 341 Microbiology for Sustainable Agriculture (every even-year spring semester; 1 credit)
- SOCR 441 Soil Ecology (spring semesters; 3 credits; co-taught with Dr. Cotrufo)
- SOCR 455 Soil Microbiology (fall semesters; 3 credits)
- SOCR 456 Soil Microbiology Laboratory (fall semesters; 1 credit)
- SOCR 755 Advanced Soil Microbiology (every even-year spring semester; 3 credits)